Although Steelers Director of football operations Kevin Colbert claimed a month ago that the Steelers are not counting out Limas Sweed as a member of the 2010 Steelers receiver unit, the draft this past weekend points to anything but that. The Steelers drafted receivers Emmanuel Sanders and Antonio Brown this past weekend with hopes that both will help ease the offseason loss of Santonio Holmes. Going into the draft, Sweed looked like the #5 receiver on the depth chart, although some would argue he could of even been the #6 behind Tyler Grisham. The Steelers brought back Antwaan Randle El after a short vacation in Washington and signed Arnaz Battle to play the 2010 role of Shaun McDonald on the roster.
Sweed surely woke up this morning tired after tossing and turning all weekend. There is no way he could sleep knowing he is just months away from having his career being over in the NFL. That may be a little harsh, as there certainly will be a team wanting to see what Sweed does or doesn\’t have for themselves, but I think every opportunity has been given to him to stick in Pittsburgh.
It was quite curious to see Sweed release a statement upon the start of last weeks on field OTA session. Perhaps it is part of his recovery for his undisclosed illness. Sweed is rumored to suffer from severe depression and perhaps severe lack of confidence as well. The 3rd year is usually the year that receivers either jump forward or slide off into oblivion. The pressure is enormous on Sweed right now and you know he feels it. He was blown right past by Mike Wallace in 2009 and come the start of camp, both Sanders and Brown will be nipping at his heels. Sweed will have to truly make the rookies look like rookies in every practice if he is to make the final 53 man roster.
Sweed is in the third year of a four year contract and the Steelers would face no salary cap penalties going forward, if he is cut prior to week one of the season, because of 2010 being uncapped. They will give him every opportunity to make the team, but will also give him every opportunity to get cut. If I were placing a bet, I would bet on the latter of the two happening. I am not sure when exactly it happened or in this case didn\’t happen for Sweed. Could it have been the drop against the Ravens in the 2008 AFC Championship game? Hard to tell really, but it is safe to say that the Steelers are not sweet on Sweed anymore, regardless what Colbert would like you believe. Bust happen from time to time, even in Pittsburgh. Sweed, my dear Steeler Nation friends, is a bust.