Now, let's take a look at that same list with estimated contract values for each of the players and a brief explanation for those figures.
Restricted Free Agents
FS Ryan Mundy ($1 million)
Mundy is a backup that does see some significant time, especially considering how rough starters Troy Polamalu and Ryan Clark can be on their bodies. That said, he isn't worth a ton of money.
RB Isaac Redman ($2 million)
Redman is still a largely unknown commodity. He's been great in his spots, but he doesn't have a large enough sample size to merit a big contract. They could try to get him on a two-year deal for about $1.5 million a year until they're sure he'll be their starter.
TE David Johnson ($1.5 million)
Johnson's contributions aren't found on his own statistics, they are found in the blocking he's done and the clutch work he's done as fullback and tight end. He won't likely be expensive, but they do need to fairly compensate him.
OG Ramon Foster ($1.5 million)
Here's another guy who, like Redman, has a small sample size but great results. He still doesn't seem to be a team favorite, but he will likely be the starter going into the season at right guard unless something changes.
CB Keenan Lewis ($975,000)
This may seem low, but Lewis doesn't have many snaps yet for a career that's several years old. He's a slow bloomer. That doesn't help his case. The Steelers also can opt not to resign him if another team gives him an offer and then take the draft pick.
DT Steve McLendon ($975,000)
McLendon is a role-playing backup. The team can't afford to pay two nose tackles big money and McLendon isn't likely to draw major interest on the market. He can be given a minimum tender and be asked to come back for another season.
WR Mike Wallace ($5.25 million)
Wallace deserves a new deal and could average more than $5 or 6 million a year. The Santonio Holmes contract could be a blueprint, but the figures are a little high for the Steelers, who would prefer a longer deal with less annual hit.
OT Jamon Meredith, WR Derrick Williams, OG Dorian Brooks (league minimum)
Meredith isn't a part of the team's plans. If they plan to bring him back at all, they will only offer him the bare minimum tender. More likely, he won't be tendered by the Steelers (more on that later). The same goes for Williams and Brooks, who aren't major pieces even as future plans go.
Unrestricted Free Agents
OT Trai Essex ($1 million)
Essex had been let go but was brought back when the line struggled. He played sparingly and his main value at this point in his career comes from being a versatile backup. That's worth $1 to 1.5 million a year.
QB Charlie Batch (Veteran Minimum)
At his age and with his injury history, Batch's value now is as an extra coach on the field. He can also step in for a game or part of a game if necessary. I can't see him being more than a league minimum backup.
WR Jerricho Cotchery ($2 million)
Cotchery has experience as a starter and could spin that into a bigger gig somewhere other than Pittsburgh. Even if he returns, he's going to want more money than he got in 2011 to be a role player. $2 million is a fair number.
CB William Gay ($2 million)
Gay had a breakout season of sorts after unseating Bryant McFadden as the team's starter. He may have earned himself a multi-year deal. If so, I would say a $2 million per year salary over a two or three-year period is perfect.
P Daniel Sepulveda ($975,000)
Sepulveda is a punter who has a bad injury history. He'll get a minimum offer somewhere because of his excellent leg strength as long as he's healthy. He will have to be in competition wherever he goes because of the injury, however.
DE Aaron Smith ($1 million)
Smith will likely retire, but if he is to come back as a backup, I can't see him getting an offer of more than one year at $1 million or maybe $1.5 million. He hasn't been healthy for a full season in a long time and his age is a major issue.
T Max Starks ($2.5 million)
This number represents his worth if healthy. Starks injured his ACL at the end of the year and may not be ready for the season. He seems to already be done in Pittsburgh, but he had a great year and made a big difference in the pass protection, so he can definitely earn a couple million for somebody.
QB Byron Leftwich ($1.5 million)
Leftwich has a big arm but is rarely healthy. He's still in the prime of his career and he has a lot of experience. He can be a nice backup for a team or can step in for extended periods and be effective behind a good line.
OL Doug Legursky ($1.5 million)
Legursky will likely slot in as the team's left guard next season. He will have to have an incentive-laden deal, however, because he has an injury history. He's worth more than most unproven linemen because he has the ability to play many spots.
QB Dennis Dixon ($1 million)
Dixon is young and has athletic ability that many envy, but he has never harnessed it very well. He's worth a $1 million deal for a team that wants to see if they can get him converted into either a competent starter or backup quarterback.
RB Mewelde Moore ($2 million)
Moore is a good contributor as a third down back and he might end up somewhere with an expanded role. He's aging and doesn't have the best speed or injury history. He does, however, have great ability to be a receiver in the flat, something a lot of teams are looking for these days.