clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

2014 NFL Free Agency: Waiting to make treasure out of another team's trash

Why rush to spend on free agents who have been languishing on the market when a team can wait around and see if another team dumps a quality veteran?

Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports

Save or spend? It's the great American question.

The Steelers have a few bucks laying around after the contract of LaMarr Woodley came off the books. A few options are still on the market, but certainly none anyone is rushing to claim now.

The reality is, there's no sense spending today on what you could have afforded yesterday but chose not to. The real issue is you simply do not know what's going to happen among other teams. For that reason alone, it's worth holding off.

Take, for example, Kansas City, who is apparently looking to deal cornerback Brandon FlowersOr at least they were before the draft. Not to worry about the cornerback position, but he's a good one, and if the space is there to pick him up, should the Chiefs choose to release him, it'd be tempting.

We know Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson more or less wants out of Houston. The Steelers wouldn't mind having Andre Johnson lining up opposite Antonio Brown. If he wouldn't mind an incentive-laden deal, he could definitely be a huge component to the Steelers making a big push this year.

It's already happened this year, in fact. The Eagles dumped Desean Jackson, much to the Redskins' pleasure. The contract fiasco with Elvis Dumervil in 2013 scored the Ravens a pass rusher they needed.

The key to remember, too, is the reason these players are let go are not necessarily associated with fatal wounds. If their contracts are terminated, odds are incredibly good they  won't make as much money as they did previously (see Jackson and Dumervil). Having the extra money stashed and not spent on an injury-prone receiver who's still one puff from a year-long suspension can put the Steelers in the running for a key player who may find himself at odds with his current team.

Titans left tackle Michael Roos is an excellent example. While it seems puzzling why the Titans would have kept Roos this long despite signing Michael Oher to a free agent deal and selecting Taylor Lewan with the 11th pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, it very well could be because they plan to release Roos if they can see enough from Lewan to think he can start at left tackle this year.

We needn't remind you under which coach Roos had a stellar career and still ranks as one of the best all-around left tackles in the game.

This isn't to suggest the Steelers will make any of these moves, but keeping space open in case the absolute perfect player comes available makes more sense, especially considering (barring injury) there isn't a player who's talent equals or exceeds the Steelers' need at any one position.

This is a 16-16 team, after all. No stone should be left unturned in an effort to imrpove.