It was not long ago that the offseason for the Pittsburgh Steelers meant that we would be losing most if not all of our players that were no longer under contract. The Steelers normally draft a player two to three years prior to having to replace someone, that way, when said persons contract is up, the Steelers can wish him well as he walks out the door.
Those days are now gone, and the normal Steelers offseason includes keeping a player or two that can still help the team.
Now that the Steelers are in the offseason, here is what they will probably do now that, barring a shocking CBA agreement, that the off season rules are about to change.
For those of you that do not know, if a new Collective Bargaining Agreement is not reached between now and March 1, the NFL rules about free agents is going to drastically change.
Players will not be eligible for UFA (Unrestricted Free Agency) until after their sixth season (instead of fourth). Teams will no longer have one Franchise or Transition tag, they will have two. There will be no salary cap or salary floor.
And teams that make the Divisional Playoff game will not be permitted to sign players in free agency unless it is to replace someone they lose, and the limit on the money they spend is low enough to keep top tier players from joining already good teams (I think it is about $3 million per year).
That being said, here is what I believe the Steelers have in mind for their pending free agents.
Jeff Reed : There has been much speculation as to what the Steelers plan on doing with their troubled kicker. That question has pretty much been answered by every member of the Steelers that has a say in the situation, Mike Tomlin, Kevin Colbert and Art Rooney II. You can read more about that here . Suffice it to say, Reeds contract is expected to be signed shortly.
Casey Hampton : AOL Fanhouse has an article up about Casey Hampton, and his displeasure about the pending Franchise tag that is coming his way. Hampton stated in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review ,
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