SL Discussion Thread for Week of Feb. 21

This is your thread to talk about … well, whatever you want.

* The NFL Combine starts later this week and Ted does the heavy lifting for you here.

* Sorta related: I started a “Put your mock draft links here” thread on the SL message board. If nothing else, we’ll have a repository for public opinion on who the Steelers should take. (And more importantly: it’ll make things easier for lazy among us — me.)

Alrighty, folks, have at it. More links to follow…

4:00 PM, Feb. 21: Deebo has back surgery [Post-Gazette]

– Despite reports, Tomlin says he hasn’t interviewed Chuck Cecil, in no hurry to fill the defensive backs coach’s job. [Tribune-Review]

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  • Anonymous

    James Walker has a good article here on how Champ Bailey’s new long-term contract with Denver helps Johnathan Joseph of the Bengals (and indirectly Ike Taylor) by establishing a high price for decent cornerbacks:

    http://espn.go.com/blog/afcnorth/post/_/id/24967/champ-bailey-helps-johnathan-joseph

    Denver just signed Bailey for $11 million/year. Does anyone here think that Ike is going to get that from the Steelers? Can the Steelers afford that? Can the Steelers NOT afford that?

    • Cols714

      Ike isn’t worth the same amount of money. He’s a good corner, especially in the Steelers’ system, but I doubt he gets a ton of offers on the open market.

      Good, not great corner. The Steelers won’t and I doubt anyone else will overpay him.

  • Anonymous

    James Walker has a good article here on how Champ Bailey’s new long-term contract with Denver helps Johnathan Joseph of the Bengals (and indirectly Ike Taylor) by establishing a high price for decent cornerbacks:

    http://espn.go.com/blog/afcnorth/post/_/id/24967/champ-bailey-helps-johnathan-joseph

    Denver just signed Bailey for $11 million/year. Does anyone here think that Ike is going to get that from the Steelers? Can the Steelers afford that? Can the Steelers NOT afford that?

  • GlennW

    What’s the story on Woodley accepting his franchise tag offer at this time (the only player in the league to do so, to date)? I figured that if the franchise tag is retained in a new CBA, he’d sign off on it then, and if it isn’t, he’d prefer to negotiate the matter as a UFA. Maybe just to lock in on the $10m, in case everything goes to hell? (I’m assuming that by signing off now, his 2011 contract is guaranteed if/when the season starts, as with any other existing contract.)

    • Anonymous

      I think the team management and Woodley have been very direct and open with respect to his contract situation. He was on a contract making well below market. He knew that and so did everyone else. The team acknowledged it but said that last year’s strange salary situation made them not want to extend a big contract. They also made it clear that Woodley would be taken care of. Woodley accepted that and went about his business of playing football without making the contract a public issue or distraction. Now management comes through and makes a big offer. I think Woodley is an honest-to-goodness team player. He was patient and open before, management was honest and did what they said they would. Both sides have been respectful and treated other right. Why not get the thing signed an move on to football?

      • Mike

        The biggest obstacle in Woody’s deal is the rule that limitis the team to extending Woody’s salary to 110% of what it was previously. That means they would have to give him a ton of money up front in a salary bonus, much like what happened with Deebo. It seems that both sides (player/agent and organization) are waiting to see if that goes away with a new CBA. If it does, then you can be sure that Woody gets paid (assuming that Kevin Colbert doesn’t want to pay Lawrence Timmons in two years and getting Jason Worilds ready, which would allow him to draft a, you guessed it, LB in the first round).

    • Lance_bull

      I think Woodley signed his franchise tag because if the CBA negotiations stretch into the late summer the NFL might want to restrict free agency to get the season moving. Restricting free agency to player with 5 or 6 years exp. like it did last year during the uncapped year. If that happens Woodley would be a restricted free agent and the Steelers would only need to tender him a much smaller amount to retain him for another year.

  • Lance_bull

    I think Woodley signed his franchise tag because if the CBA negotiations stretch into the late summer the NFL might want to restrict free agency to players with 5 or 6 year. Like it was 6 years last year during the uncapped year instead of 4. If that happens Woodley (with only 4 years exp.) would be a restricted free agent and the Steelers would only need to tender him a much smaller amount to retain him for another year.

    • GlennW

      Thanks. I think this is the correct answer to my question. I had neglected to realize that Woodley could have still ended up as an RFA at only four years of service. In fact, if anything it’s the Steelers who went out on a limb here in guaranteeing the $10m+. They probably believe that the free agency rules will revert back to something close to what they were before the uncapped year. Actually, this seems likely because as compared to the standoff around the shared revenue percentage, the service rules shouldn’t be difficult to come to terms on, with the terms unlikely to be onerous to the players.