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Old 02-22-2009, 09:15 AM   #1
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Default Numbered days for Steelers' Washington

http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt...s_612919.html#

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Numbered days for Steelers' Washington

By John Harris
TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Sunday, February 22, 2009

What Nate Washington wants isn't important right now.

It's only natural that Washington wants to remain with the Steelers, the team that nurtured him as an undrafted free agent from Division II Tiffin.

Washington has won two Super Bowls in his four seasons with the Steelers. He's close enough to his hometown of Toledo, Ohio, to schedule visits there during the season.

It's a good life.

A good life that should become even better with the beginning of unrestricted free agency Friday. With that in mind, Washington is preparing for life after the Steelers.

"Nate had a great run in Pittsburgh. If his final game has been played there, so be it,'' said Thomas Tafelski, who represents Washington.

Tafelski is resigned to the fact that Washington, considered one of the top free agent receivers, will be moving on.

"None," Tafelski said when asked about the status of Washington's negotiations with the Steelers.

"I would have thought they would have reached out. We spoke briefly at the Super Bowl."

If the Steelers don't sign Washington before Friday, he won't be back.

If Washington is smart, he won't look back. Why should he? He's a marketable commodity in a year when the talent pool for free-agent receivers is shallow, and teams such as Tennessee are looking for playmakers with the ability to go deep.

Ironically, the very thing that worked in Washington's favor during his tenure with the Steelers cheap labor will work against him entering free agency.

Washington wasn't drafted, so he didn't cost as much to develop. Among the players ahead of him on the depth chart, veteran Hines Ward is on the books for $5.8 million next season. The Steelers also made a significant investment in Limas Sweed, last year's second-round draft pick.

Washington produced his best pro season in 2008 with career highs in receptions (40) and yards (631). His 15.8-yard average led the team.

Twenty-six of Washington's catches resulted in first downs. Nine of those receptions were on third down.

"Nate's going to appeal to teams looking for vertical speed and big-play ability. There's not that many guys like that out there," said former NFL team executive Michael Lombardi of NationalFootballPost.com

"It's economics and timing. It's going to be who wants him and who's willing to compete for him." Lombardi said. "Nate's talent matches what Tennessee is looking for. They're looking for a guy on the outside who can make big plays. He's got the speed to create problems."

And the ability to get paid with or without the Steelers.

John Harris can be reached at jharris@tribweb.com or 412-481-5432.
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Old 02-22-2009, 10:35 AM   #2
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Default Re: Numbered days for Steelers' Washington

That says it all, it is all about money who can pay the most.
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Old 02-22-2009, 10:59 AM   #3
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Default Re: Numbered days for Steelers' Washington

He is wanting to cash in and honestly who can blame him?? Sad thing is he will probably turn into Yancey Thigpen and never be heard of again.
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Old 02-22-2009, 11:01 AM   #4
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Default Re: Numbered days for Steelers' Washington

How many more Nate threads do we need?

Until last year - nobody liked him.

Poor Stone Hands finally found a fanclub, now he's gonna leave?

Our great #3 WR tradition carries on....

Cedric Wilson
Nate the great

Dallas Baker - come on down!
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Old 02-22-2009, 11:09 AM   #5
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Default Re: Numbered days for Steelers' Washington

haha.. the titans can throw all the money they want at him.. but u know he is good for a good amount of dropped passes
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Old 02-22-2009, 11:45 AM   #6
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Default Re: Numbered days for Steelers' Washington

Be honest with yourself if you where ihn the NFL geting paid minimum or little above. you have been inthe legue for 4 years and have won 2 super bowls what else is there to get out of your career but money? I hate yo see him go as i hate to see any steeler leave, but you cant blame him!
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Old 02-22-2009, 12:04 PM   #7
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Default Re: Numbered days for Steelers' Washington

SWEEEEED
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Old 02-22-2009, 01:04 PM   #8
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Default Re: Numbered days for Steelers' Washington

if washington does go... i think sweed will be a good number 3 for us next yr.. and we can always pick up a wr via the draft or FA to be number 4...
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Old 02-22-2009, 01:18 PM   #9
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Default Re: Numbered days for Steelers' Washington

He's got the rings.......now he needs to focus on putting away enough money to be comfortable for the rest of his life after football. Can't blame the guy one bit......
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Old 02-22-2009, 01:19 PM   #10
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Default Re: Numbered days for Steelers' Washington

Well, have fun on the Raiders. They always overpay so-so receivers. Especially if they won a Super Bowl, much less two. We shouldn't miss a beat as long as Sweed gets over his jitters.
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