Would The Steelers Delay Restructuring Ben Roethlisberger In Order To Stick It To The Ravens?

Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk has a very interesting scenario that relates to the Pittsburgh Steelers possibly wanting to wait until after March 4 to restructure the contract of quarterback Ben Roethlisberger to ensure that the Baltimore Ravens have a higher exclusive franchise tag number to carry on quarterback Joe Flacco until they get a new long-term deal worked out with him.

Florio explains that if the Steelers were to lower the cap number on Roethlisberger via a restructure prior to March 4 that it would ultimately lower the franchise tag amount that the Ravens have to carry on Flacco because of Roethlisberger currently being one of the quarterbacks with one of the five highest cap numbers in 2013.

Florio writes that the Ravens might also wait until right before the deadline to issue the exclusive franchise tag on Flacco, if that is indeed the tag that they plan on using, for this very reason as it would free up a little bit of offseason cap space to work with until a new deal is finalized with their Super Bowl MVP.

A little salary cap game of cat and mouse? Do the Steelers really care about such a thing?

Florio also explains in his post that Matthew Stafford, Peyton Manning and Eli Manning, who are currently three of the other top five quarterbacks with the highest scheduled 2013 cap charges, are all represented by CAA, who also represent Ravens wide receiver Anquan Boldin, who could become a salary cap casualty should Baltimore become pinched for salary cap space.

All three of those quarterbacks are candidates to have their 2013 cap charges lowered via either an extension, in the case of Stafford, or restructures, in the case of the Manning brothers. Those three teams, however, as Florio points out, have no incentive to get those deals put to bed by a certain date in order to help the Ravens.

While the post by Florio certainly makes one sit back and think, I think that with so many variables involved that the Steelers could care less about when they get Roethlisberger to sign off on a restructure. Maybe I am wrong. All we can do at this point is wait and see when the word of the Roethlisberger restructure finally leaks out. If it winds up being after March 4 then maybe the Steelers were indeed watching this whole scenario very closely and trying to stick it to the Ravens.

  • steeltown


  • WilliamSekinger

    Very interesting indeed. Although, Denver would have to be off their rocker to restructure Peyton with his history.

  • Nolrog

    When do we need to be under the cap number? It’s very difficult to get there without Ben’s restructure.

    The Steelers should do what’s best for the Steelers and not worry about the impact on anyone else. Besides, I read just the other day, that the franchise tag is a lot more complicated as a result of the new contract (it’s no longer just a matter of the average of the top 5 players. So I’m not sure how much of an issue this would be anyway.)

  • Intropy

    Why on Earth would the Ravens put an exclusive rights franchise tag on Flacco? If they put the non-exclusive tag on him, and some other team is dumb enough to sign him away, the Ravens would get get to pocket two first round picks out of the deal from a team bad enough to hope to be saved by Joe Flacco. I think they’d happily take that.

  • Kevin Gobleck

    I would love to piss off the ravens like that, to be quite honest!

  • LucasY59

    If I remember correctly they would have until March 12th to restructure and have the team under the cap. that should be plenty of time to get the deal done especially if they are working on it now and just wait to finalize the contract until after the 4th. I agree the Steelers should be worrying more about the Steelers than finding ways to try and screw with other teams (It is business and anything that can give you an advantage over your opponents is beneficial as long as it does not break rules or make the team look poorly) however I think the franchise tag with Flacco is just a time extension for Baltimore to negotiate and give him a 5+ year 20 or so mil per/yr contract before next season starts anyway (which will make it hard for the ratbirds to resign some of their other FA’s and stay under the cap) the only way Bens contract will have any effect on Baltimore is that they may have to cut someone in order to be under the cap on the 12th with Flacco’s franchise tag.