EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - NOVEMBER 16: (FILE PHOTO) Plaxico Burress #17 of the New York Giants in action against the Baltimore Ravens during their game on November 16, 2008 at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Plaxico Burress, a former New York Giants and Pittsburgh Steelers receiver, who is known for his winning touchdown in the 2008 Super Bowl, has reportedly agreed to sign with the New York Jets. The contract will be, reportedly, for one year. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Replace "Maurice Jones-Drew" with "Plaxico Burress," and "trade with "sign in free agency."
The former Steeler, former Giant, former Jet and former ward of the State of New York will not come back to Pittsburgh for anything other than more court appearances for failure to pay old debts, which appears to be a running problem for the formerly outstanding player.
What, exactly, is Burress expected to bring to the table? He was never all that fast to begin with, is Steelers' GM supposed to replace holdout speedster Mike Wallace with a 35-year-old who has the acceleration of a garbage truck?
What the Steelers have is depth at the position, even without Wallace. The abilities of Antonio Brown, Emmanuel Sanders and Jerricho Cotchery give the Steelers a formidable core group, and younger guys like Toney Clemons and Marquis Maze can compete for the 5WR position (4WR until Wallace shows up).
Plus, barring injury, the expanse of the offense this season will bring several other pass receivers into the limelight. Expect the catches of TE Heath Miller increase a bit, along with RB Isaac Redman and TE Weslye Saunders.
To top it all off, one rumor suggests Burress is too expensive.
Too expensive! He thinks he's worth more than the veteran minimum. If the Steelers do need a veteran receiver (something I'm not dismissing as a possibility), it isn't likely to be one who caught less than half his targets (45 catches, 97 targets) in 2011 yet wants more than what other aging receivers are begging for in free agency.
My thought is if it happens, I'd be very surprised, borderline shocked. Stranger things have happened, but even I can see there are plenty of talented receivers available in free agency who could help the team in the capacity most 5WRs do - on the practice field, in film study and occasionally, in games.
And you pay them less than half of what the aged Burress wants.