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An important history lesson for you TRUE Steelers fans!

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Old 01-16-2008, 04:10 AM   #1
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Default Big Ben on ... Alan Faneca, his contract and his wish list for 2008

Big Ben on ... Alan Faneca, his contract and his wish list for 2008
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger's wish list for 2008Ben Roethlisberger has three desires as he enters the offseason: A tall wide receiver, the return of guard Alan Faneca, and a new contract as soon as possible.

The contract most likely will be worked out, even if it does not occur as quickly as the Steelers quarterback might prefer. The other two are more problematic.

Faneca becomes an unrestricted free agent Feb. 29, and while the Steelers plan to talk to his agent before then, even director of football operations Kevin Colbert noted Monday that "the price most likely has gone up."

Still, Roethlisberger made his pitch to management that they try to keep his All-Pro guard, who has been a linchpin of the offensive line for a decade.

"I don't know what's going to happen," Roethlisberger said yesterday. "That's hard for me, there could be an outlying story, something here or there I don't know about. But they do know how I feel about it. They know how valuable he is."

He also knows that a similar plea he made to keep 6-5 receiver Plaxico Burress when he became an unrestricted free agent three years ago went unheeded.

Now Roethlisberger has made another appeal for the Steelers to acquire another tall wide receiver. His top three receivers are Hines Ward, listed as 6 feet, 5-11 Santonio Holmes and 6-1 Nate Washington.

"I'm always going to ask for a tall receiver," Roethlisberger said. "That's just me. Our receivers are unbelievable, but our tallest guy might be Hines? Or Santonio? Hines is going to say he's 6 foot, but he's 5-11, now."

The Steelers do have tall tight ends in 6-5 Heath Miller and 6-7 Matt Spaeth, but Roethlisberger would like to spot a taller target at wide receiver as well.

"It's nice to have a bailout guy, you know when you're in trouble and you just kind of throw it up. In the red zone its nice to have a guy like that. Obviously, we have a guy like Nate who can jump out of this world. He can jump so high. It's nice to have that.

"But to have a big guy who can create mismatches -- the same thing happened when Plax was here. So much presence went to Plax's side just because he's a big, good receiver, that Hines was always open or Antwaan [Randle El]. I just think it would open stuff up for us a lot more."

Part of it also has to do with the physics of the forward pass when he delivers it.

"I'm 6-5," Roethlisberger noted. "I throw down to a lot of these guys. You see so many times Hines reaching up and I'm getting him killed because he's reaching up for balls and I'm just throwing it on my plane. To have someone on the same plane as me would just make my job ... I wouldn't get Hines killed going across the middle all the time."

Roethlisberger said he has talked to the Steelers about it and that "we'll probably look for some guys in free agency, I would assume, look in there and see what we can find."

He also said that 6-3 Dallas Baker, a seventh-round draft pick from Florida who spent his rookie season on the Steelers' practice squad, might ultimately help in that regard.

"As soon as he gets out of that wide receiver funk of just running routes on a card, he has the potential to be pretty good," Roethlisberger said.

The quarterback has two years left on the contract he signed as a rookie in 2004, and both sides acknowledge that this is the year to extend it. He would prefer that to happen sooner rather than later.

"I'm eager, anxious because I want to get it done with, I want to say let's go, let's get it over with so the talks can stop, people can stop bugging me about it. Because I just want to play football. Let's get it over with, let's get it done so I can get right back into football and not think about it and not have people talking about it all the time."

His agent, Ryan Tollner, wanted to try to extend the deal a year ago, but the Steelers preferred to wait. No talks have yet been scheduled as far as Roethlisberger knows.

"My guys are waiting for that call," Roethlisberger said. "We don't want to push it. We are waiting to hear something from them.

"I don't know what to expect because you hear so many different stories from guys who have been here before and the media."

Might he take a Tom Brady-like stance where he does not demand as much as he might be able to get in order to save salary-cap room so the Steelers can sign others?

"You know what? I'm not even dealing with that right now," Roethlisberger said. "I'm always going to do what's best for this team."

• • •

NOTE -- DT Scott Paxson signed a contract with the Steelers. Undrafted from Penn State in 2006, he spent time on their practice squad the past two seasons.
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Old 01-16-2008, 04:49 AM   #2
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Default Re: Big Ben on ... Alan Faneca, his contract and his wish list for 2008

Big ben might get his wish in a tall wide reciever but I don't see him getting to keep faneca.
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Old 01-16-2008, 06:12 AM   #3
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Default Re: Big Ben on ... Alan Faneca, his contract and his wish list for 2008

I can see the Steelers current group of wide receivers being a little disturbed by Roethlisberger's wish for a taller receiver. Just my opinion of course.
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Old 01-16-2008, 06:37 AM   #4
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Default Re: Big Ben on ... Alan Faneca, his contract and his wish list for 2008

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I can see the Steelers current group of wide receivers being a little disturbed by Roethlisberger's wish for a taller receiver. Just my opinion of course.
I think they know how tall they are. (Well....somebody obviously needs to inform Hines )
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Old 01-16-2008, 06:42 AM   #5
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Default Re: Big Ben on ... Alan Faneca, his contract and his wish list for 2008

bryant johnson - 6'3 213
ernest wilford - 6'4 218
justin gage - 6'4 212
(RFA) malcolm floyd - 6'5 225

wouldnt mind seeing one of them be brought in.

i'd also keep an eye on andre davis, who is a decent deep threat and is a good return man. devery henderson, dj hackett, jerry porter and bernard berrian are the other guys to keep an eye on as well.

i think we will end up signing one of these guys.
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Old 01-16-2008, 06:59 AM   #6
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Default Re: Big Ben on ... Alan Faneca, his contract and his wish list for 2008

Here is a list of FA Wide Recievers ...by height.


6'05 Malcom Floyd RFA San Diego Chargers
6'04 Randy Moss, UFA, New England Patriots
6'04 Justin Gage UFA Tennessee Titans
6'04 Ernest Wilford UFA Jacksonville Jaquars
6'03 Bryant Johnson, UFA, Arizona Cardinals
6'03 Drew Carter, UFA, Carolina Panthers
6'03 Marcus Robinson UFA
6'02 Doug Gabriel UFA Oakland Raiders
6'02 D.J. Hackett UFA Seattle Seahawks
6'01 Andre’ Davis UFA Houston Texans
6'01 Bernard Berrian, UFA, Chicago Bears
6'01 Keary Colbert UFA Carolina Panthers
6'00 Terrance Copper UFA New Orleans Saints
6'00 Taylor Jacobs UFA Washington Redskins
5'11 Devery Henderson, UFA, New Orleans Saints
5'11 Jerome Mathis RFA Houston Texans
5'11 Samie Parker UFA Kansas City Chiefs
5'10 David Patten UFA New Orleans Saints
5'10 Az-Zahir Hakim UFA Miami Dolphins
5'08 Antonio Chatman UFA Cincinnati Bengals
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Old 01-16-2008, 07:02 AM   #7
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Default Re: Big Ben on ... Alan Faneca, his contract and his wish list for 2008

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Originally Posted by jjpro11 View Post
bryant johnson - 6'3 213
ernest wilford - 6'4 218
justin gage - 6'4 212
(RFA) malcolm floyd - 6'5 225

wouldnt mind seeing one of them be brought in.

i'd also keep an eye on andre davis, who is a decent deep threat and is a good return man. devery henderson, dj hackett, jerry porter and bernard berrian are the other guys to keep an eye on as well.

i think we will end up signing one of these guys.
I think we can "afford" Gage.... and he would be a good fit for us....But Bryant Johnson or DJ Hackett would be very hign on my wish list!!!
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Old 01-16-2008, 07:59 AM   #8
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Default Re: Big Ben on ... Alan Faneca, his contract and his wish list for 2008

I like Ernest Wilford....but that's my small opinion
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Old 01-16-2008, 08:31 AM   #9
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Default Re: Big Ben on ... Alan Faneca, his contract and his wish list for 2008

Ben asking for the Steelers to sign Faneca is throwing a bone to a teammate and nothing more - if the Rooneys wanted to call Ben's bluff & ask how serious he really is they could come back through the P-G and ask Ben how much of a haircut on his contract he is willing to take to keep Faneca (Ben slipped away from the question on whether he would take less to help the team)

I agree with Ben on the smurf receivers - unfortnately the last time the Steelers tried to draft a tall receiver they burned a 4th round pick on functional illiterate Fred Gibson

After the second round Colbert should just put lists of players on a wall and throw darts for as much success as he has had in the later rounds the last several years
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Old 01-16-2008, 08:38 AM   #10
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Default Re: Big Ben on ... Alan Faneca, his contract and his wish list for 2008

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I think we can "afford" Gage.... and he would be a good fit for us....But Bryant Johnson or DJ Hackett would be very hign on my wish list!!!
I dint know much about Gage, but I too would like to see us go after Bryant Johnson. I think he is a very good WR who was stuck in the shadows of Fitz and Boldin. He should be available at a reasonable price too
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