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Old 07-14-2009, 07:48 AM   #1
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Default Heath Miller not to be salary cap casualty; source says team actively trying to work

Heath Miller not to be salary cap casualty; source says team actively trying to work out contract
July 14, 1:45 AM
http://www.examiner.com/x-2703-Pitts...g-out-contract

Matt Pawlikowski
Pittsburgh Sports Examiner


There has been a recent report that Heath Miller could become a victim of salary cap cuts. This is one of the most ridiculous things that I have heard this off-season and most of my media colleagues agree.

That would be similar to saying Darnell Stapelton will be competing with Santonio Holmes for the No. 1 receiver slot. Ahh, not going to happen.

Sources within the Steelers organization have confirmed that the team is indeed actively pursuing extending Millers contract. A call to his agent was not returned. Mike Bires of the Beaver County Times also reported this nearly a month ago.

Miller has a base salary of $800,000 heading into the 2009 season. Cutting him would be illogical now and while there are a number of key free agents heading into 2010, it may be an uncapped year - although that is still up in the air (Sean Crowe the New England Patriots Examiner wrote a nice article on this)

If that is the fact, a team could use its transition tag on two players instead of one, giving them the right to match any offer made by another club, meaning even if the team fails to work out a contract prior to the season, Miller should remain a Steeler past 2009.

Yes, the 6-foot-5, Miller is in the last year of a five year contract and deserves a higher salary. And the Steelers have a policy of not negotiating contracts once the regular season begins. But to release him during the regular season? Ludicrous.

Miller brings so much to the table as a tight end, and while he doesn't make the Pro Bowl or get the publicity that an Anthony Gonzalez or Antonio Gates get, he not only can catch the ball, but has tremendous blocking skills and adds an extra lineman to the picture for protection.

Just ask Steeler offensive coordinator Bruce Arians.

"Pro bowls have nothing to do with the best tight ends going to the Pro Bowl," Arians said in 2008. "It's the guy with the most catches who goes. Those are glorified wide receivers. I've said it every year, Heath's the best tight end in the AFC."

In college, Miller, was a consensus first-team All-American and won the prestigious Mackey Award as the nation's top tight end in '04 at Virginia. He caught 41 passes for 541 yards with five touchdowns. He also showed the type of toughness that epitomizes Steeler football - he played the entire year with a sports hernia.

Here is another reason why Miller will be re-signed by the team. Unlike a Willie Parker ( who is also in the last year of contract) Miller is irreplaceable.

Case in point.

The Steelers currently have four other tight ends on the roster ( Matt Spaeth, Sean McHugh, David Johnson and Dezmond Sherrod ) Not one of them brings the talent Miller does, to the table.

While there are those who feel Spaeth is a capable back-up, that is all he will ever be, and he may not even be that in 2009 as McHugh can also play fullback role and has much better hands than Spaeth. The interesting thing is that McHugh is due $620,000 in 2009 while Speath just $420,000.

If any tight end would be cut (which again is not going to happen, wouldn't it make sense to get rid of McHugh who makes just $180,000 less than Miller?)

As for the Steelers other two tight ends, well lets just say Arians loves the tight end, and leave it at that.

"There is no better place to play football then the city of Pittsburgh, and to be a part of two of the six championships is special." Miller told the Intelligencer-Journal.

'Nuff said.
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Old 07-14-2009, 09:00 AM   #2
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Default Re: Heath Miller not to be salary cap casualty; source says team actively trying to w

non issue, we sign him.... a no brainer.
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Old 07-14-2009, 09:08 AM   #3
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Default Re: Heath Miller not to be salary cap casualty; source says team actively trying to w

there is no way that we let him walk, that would be crazy
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Old 07-14-2009, 10:09 AM   #4
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Default Re: Heath Miller not to be salary cap casualty; source says team actively trying to w

I never had a doubt in my mind that we will get a deal done, Miller is one of the best TE's in the league and we gotta have him.
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Old 07-14-2009, 02:40 PM   #5
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Default Re: Heath Miller not to be salary cap casualty; source says team actively trying to w

This is some good news. You never know in the world of sports here one day gone the next. I am glad we are working to extend him for the future.
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Old 07-14-2009, 02:42 PM   #6
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Default Re: Heath Miller not to be salary cap casualty; source says team actively trying to w

Heath is to the Steelers like cheese is to a burger - ya just GOTTA have it. Get him extended FO.
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Old 07-14-2009, 04:01 PM   #7
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Default Re: Heath Miller not to be salary cap casualty; source says team actively trying to w

I needed some good news today!
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Old 07-14-2009, 04:04 PM   #8
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Default Re: Heath Miller not to be salary cap casualty; source says team actively trying to w

Can no let him go. Can no lose.
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Old 07-14-2009, 04:33 PM   #9
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Default Re: Heath Miller not to be salary cap casualty; source says team actively trying to w

I don't know why the sportswriters are even talking about something this idiotic. The issue is whether we can afford to give Miller a NEW deal worth $4-$5 million a year when his contract is up, not whether we'll cut him before this season while he's still playing for peanuts. Anyone can see that would be unbelievably stupid. My only guess is that someone at the paper misunderstood something or their brain malfunctioned.
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Old 07-14-2009, 04:48 PM   #10
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Default Re: Heath Miller not to be salary cap casualty; source says team actively trying to w

Quote:
Originally Posted by steelreserve View Post
I don't know why the sportswriters are even talking about something this idiotic. The issue is whether we can afford to give Miller a NEW deal worth $4-$5 million a year when his contract is up, not whether we'll cut him before this season while he's still playing for peanuts. Anyone can see that would be unbelievably stupid. My only guess is that someone at the paper misunderstood something or their brain malfunctioned.
Thank you. All I could think while I was reading this article was "wtf is this guy talking about, no one said he would be cut so we can keep someone else."

The question was if we could afford to extend him based on how small our available cap space is right now. I too think he is the highest priority right now, but I will remain nervous until the extension is announced.
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