Pittsburgh Steelers: Antwaan Randle El Signing Is Pointless

Chris MillerCorrespondent IMarch 8, 2010

SEATTLE - NOVEMBER 23:  Antwaan Randle El #82 of the Washington Redskins moves on the field before the game against the Seattle Seahawks on November 23, 2008 at Qwest Field in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers have agreed to a three-year contract with free agent Antwaan Randle El, former wide receiver of the Washington Redskins.

Great. Now Steeler Nation is going to be excited about this one.

Seriously, smile and celebrate now, because once the season starts, fans will realize the impact Randle El will have for the Steelers next season.


Anyone who has followed Randle El since his departure from Pittsburgh after the Steelers Super Bowl win in 2006 against the Seattle Seahawks will agree that the Steelers allowing Randle El to sign with the Redskins turned out to be a great decision.

Ironically, bringing him back to Pittsburgh is quite the opposite.

What will Randle El bring to the table for the organization?

Is he going to challenge Hines Ward, Santonio Holmes, or Mike Wallace on the depth chart?


Will he return to the team as its punt return specialist?

Indeed, I pray he doesn't.

Will he be a feature of a Wildcat formation?

Truthfully, aren't there other players already on the team who can effectively fill that role if Bruce Arians chooses to go that route?

And didn't the Steeler organization recently make a statement that they would recommit to a running style offense?

Honestly, what does signing Randle El do to improve an already talented pool of offensive playmakers?

Just about the only thing he might accomplish is finalizing the final farewell for Limas Sweed.

There is little Randle El can do to complement the Steelers offense. All that can be said is that, initially, Randle El is a stamp to be fourth on the wide receiver depth chart.

Too many receivers, and not enough footballs.

How many plays will the Steelers offense deploy four wide receivers next year?

Randle El is a talented athlete, but talent doesn't necessarily translate into production— especially when his role with the Steelers will most likely be minimal.

So now the task at hand is to wait and see. Of course, Randle El can prove to be beneficial to the team in the near future.

Randle El can be a quality replacement if a starting receiver should become injured.

Randle El could fill a gap if negotiations with Holmes fail to reach a deal, with Holmes in the final year of his contract.

Randle El can be used as quarterback should Ben Roethlisberger be sidelined because of legal troubles.

Admittedly, that last suggestion was a joke, although some uninformed fans might conjure up such a ridiculous belief.

Fact is, there is nothing to become overwhelmingly excited about this deal. Because the Steelers are so stocked offensively, Randle El's second tenure with the Steelers will be nothing more than a disappointment.

This is a bad contract signing by Randle El—and a pointless one to the Steelers.