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Steelers roster: Changes are coming, there is no doubt

The Steelers have two games left this year, but it's hard to separate the present from the future of this struggling franchise.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sport

PITTSBURGH -- There are going to be changes to the Pittsburgh Steelers roster next season. That much is certain.

After that, everything is up in the air. Sure, it's unlikely that Ryan Clark will be re-signed, as the veteran safety's play has diminished appreciably this year and he will turn 35 during the season. It's also unlikely that defensive end Brett Keisel will be re-signed. The bearded wonder will be 36 when next season begins, and he has played a full season just once (2012) since 2007.

There also are questions about outside linebacker LaMarr Woodley, wideout Emmanuel Sanders, defensive end Ziggy Hood, strong safety Troy Polamalu and cornerback Ike Taylor, among others, as age, salary considerations and level of play would create issues with each one.

Still, as tempting as it might be, the Steelers (6-8) aren't looking ahead. At least they said they aren't concerned about their roster situation going into the final two regular-season games at Green Bay Sunday and at home with Cleveland Dec. 29.

"We're just worried about these last two,'' Steelers defensive end Cam Heyward said. "We'll see what happens. I don't know what this team's going to look like next year, but I'm just going to take it for what it's worth, play out these last two games and then move forward from there.''

Taylor is among a group of Steelers who could remain with the team with altered contracts, as long as youth is served around him. The same could be said about Polamalu.

"You can't look around,'' Taylor said. "You've just got to play football. We've still got two games left, so we have to let the offseason and end of the season take care of itself. And we've just got to go out and produce in these final two games. We'll see what happens after that.

"Memories are created every day when you play football in this league. It's hard to explain, but when you're with the same guys in this locker room year in and year out, day in and day out and go through all the ups and downs with these guys, you can't do better than that. So, we've got memories for days.''

Wideout Antonio Brown wouldn't even speculate on how good the offense could be next season.

"I just try to focus on what's important, and that's trying to make plays to help this team win these last two games,'' Brown said. "I don't think anybody's looking ahead to next year. We're all concerned with these last two games and then seeing what happens after that.

"But, first, we have to try to make plays to win these last two football games. So, we're not focused on next year. We've got a great opponent coming up in the Green Bay Packers, so that's our focus right now.''

Heath Miller appeared to be reading from the company handbook.

"Our focus has to be maintained on our task at hand, and individually I just need to look at how I can help our offense move the ball, make first downs and get the ball into the end zone,'' Miller said. "And I think, collectively, that has to be the approach by all our guys.''