Welcome to Tuesday Steeler fans.
Eric Weddle had made it known heading into free agency that he wanted to play for a contender. As it turns out he wanted to get paid too. He accepted a four year deal worth $29 million with Baltimore which was far higher than I anticipated. Weddle is a solid veteran safety but with just one interception in the last two years his price was way too high and I think the Steelers did the right thing in not trying to match that.
Free agent offensive tackle Russell Okung met with Steelers’ Offensive Line Coach Mike Munchak down in Houston on Monday. Later in the day, Kelvin Beachum returned to Pittsburgh after being courted by Jacksonville. The Steelers have to be careful here; they can’t make plays on both only to end up seeing both go elsewhere. If that happens then they are back to square one.
What the decision to bring in Okung and (Ryan Harris later this week) means is that I don’t think we can take offensive tackle off the table in the first round. If the Steelers can’t get Beachum, Okung or Harris to sign then perhaps Ohio State’s Taylor Decker or Michigan State’s Jack Conklin become options at number 25. The grand conclusion in all of this is that the Steelers clearly aren’t on board with starting the season with Al Villanueva at left tackle.
Tweet of the Day… Couldn’t agree more with ESPN’s Trey Wingo.
If we're really having a 3rd Super Tuesday….how Super were the 1st 2?
— trey wingo (@wingoz) March 15, 2016
People have asked me the last couple of days if I think the Steelers should part ways with Martavis Bryant. I made the case at the beginning of the season that I wouldn’t have blamed them had they cut him after the four-game suspension and I feel the same way for this reason… After issues at Clemson and issues already in his young NFL career why should I think he can finally make smart choices now? The Steelers will keep him because he’s cheap. They get back his $600,000 salary while he’s suspended which isn’t much. Here is GM Kevin Colbert’s statement on Bryant.
“We are very disappointed that Martavis Bryant has put himself in this current situation of being suspended by the League. He is at a crossroads of his professional life, and he needs to understand significant changes need to occur in his personal life if he wants to regain his career as a Pittsburgh Steeler. We are hopeful that Martavis will take the necessary steps to develop the discipline in his personal life to become a successful player and a good teammate.” Quote courtesy steelers.com
The likely scenario for replacing Bryant is to go with Darrius Heyward-Bey but ideally Sammie Coates would grab the baton. If the Steelers draft a wide receiver early in the and draft then I’d read that as “not a good thing for Coates.”
With Steve McLendon off to visit the New York Jets I think he’s still an option for the Steelers but less of one now. Look for at least one or two defensive linemen to be added in free agency.
Have a great Tuesday Steeler Nation!
Photo courtesy tennessean.com