We’re only at the quarter mark of this season and I remain optimistic that there is a late season hot streak in this team like we have seen before. Not comparing teams across time here, just holding onto hope. This post involves the dead horses we have been beating, but with some other questions and considerations I have had lately.
- What kind of trade value could we get for Rashard Mendenhall? He is young and good, potentially very good, but there are reasons it could make sense to trade him. The biggest point here is the cost of re-signing him. If he stays put at a reasonable price, then none of this matters and we keep him. The problem is he might require elite RB pay and I am not a fan of expensive RBs. It’s too dangerous of a position to tie up a lot of money in one guy. There is also the matter of him being not real well-liked among the players or the fans. He is not hated by any means, but certainly not among the favorites. Lastly, the way he frequently holds the ball out in his palm just makes me nervous. Mendy is signed through 2012 so per tradition, the extension happens this coming offseason. But what if we could get Mike Pouncey (I’m still stuck on pairing up the twins) and a draft pick right before Rashard gets pricey? Miami has Reggie Bush, but he is not a feature back. If not Miami, there could be other trade partners. I think I’d be comfortable with a backfield of Redman, Dwyer, and Batch especially if the line is dramatically improved. Redman has been productive and his running style is more beautiful to us in the Burgh than any other town. Then we just need a fullback and Mike Mularkey calling plays. Sorry, that’s the dead horse that Bruce Arians was riding.
- If a player retires midseason, what is the immediate effect on the salary cap? Or can a player agree to reduce their pay during a season? I don’t expect either to happen, it’s more curiosity. Obviously, this has to do with Smith and Farrior. As much as we all love these two, it’s getting clear that they are packing their bags for their journey up to Steeler Heaven. Both appear to have lost a good deal of physicality. It would be entirely up to them, but if they can’t get it back in these next few weeks, maybe some of their cash can go to an addition on the O-line. Here’s the dead horse Flozell was riding. And since it takes two horses to carry that man, what is the real story with him? We’ve heard different accounts on that, but I really hope it’s not true that the team turned him down. (Apparently, Max Starks has been signed since I started writing this. Great news!) I wonder what Alan Faneca is up to these days…
- We’ll be seeing a lot of roster turnover in the next couple seasons. By Fall 2013, it would be a surprise if any of Smith, Farrior, Ward, Hampton, and Hoke remained. Several others will be nearing the end of the line at that point. I like a lot of the youth we have in line for the next wave. We look good for the future at multiple positions. In the next couple drafts, everyone knows we have to be looking OL, OL, OL, and NT. I think a playmaking free safety is important soon as well. Also, Thaddeus Gibson, Keith Williams, Sunny Harris, and Doug Worthington may be available in the offseason, though Keith and Doug are currently on other practice squads. Each of them had supposedly showed promise in their time here. Maybe some lost prospects will return to fight for a spot. Gibson is the most interesting to me. I’ll also keep an eye on Crezdon Butler, who has been IR’d out in West Pittsburgh. Whatever happens, this will be almost entirely Tomlin’s team in a few years. The Bill Cowher era roster is fading and we’ll see what type of team Tomlin builds. Lucky for him, Colbert stuck around and has helped this team draft well as usual.
- Lastly, Mike Tomlin has the eyebrows of a seven foot tall man. It seems like they belong up there and he has to struggle to keep them down near his eyeballs. It’s so distracting. I can’t get over his constant eyebrow pumping. He must have the strongest forehead in the world.
For those of you versed in the Simpsons:
Principal Skinner- “Milhouse! Lower those eyebrows!”
(Milhouse lowers one)
Principal Skinner- “And the other one!”