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Mike Wallace will top the list of free agents the Steelers wish to bring back.
The next Steeler to expect a big contract should be Mike Wallace. Performing at a high level, Wallace has deserved the raise, and the Steelers are reportedly interested in keeping him. After Wallace, the talent among the Steelers' free agents drops off.
Though there aren't any big-name guys after Wallace, there are still key players the Steelers should bring back. For instance, all three of Big Ben's backups are set to hit the free-agent market this offseason. Pittsburgh should let Batch and Dixon go and re-sign Leftwich, because he is the most suitable backup of the bunch.
With speculation that Hines Ward's days as a Steeler are over, re-signing Jerricho Cotchery would be a smart move that would give the Steelers an elite group of wide receivers.
On the opposite side of the ball, cornerback William Gay finally proved to be a legitimate starter after inconsistent play during the beginning of his career. If the Steelers don't plan on re-signing Gay, their secondary would take a big hit, and they would most likely need to sign a new starter opposite Ike Taylor.
Because of how injury-prone the offensive line has been, re-signing free agent Trai Essex would be wise. Though Essex is not elite at any position, he is able to and has played all positions along the line when called upon. Having a utility guy like Essex is like having a safety blanket for the offensive line, something for which the Steelers should strive.