Steelers That Are Candidates To Have Their Contracts Extended

Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert mentioned that contract extensions for a few players might be in the works as part of the process to getting the team salary cap compliant by March 12, the start of the new league year. We will now have a look at a few players that the organization may or may not be considering to extend.

Ben Roethlisberger – Roethlisberger is the name you will hear the most when talking about extensions. It should be noted, however, that he is under contract through the 2015 season and he and his agent are more than likely wanting to wait and watch what Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco gets this offseason before signing up for a few more years. Restructuring the contract of Roethlisberger will likely end up being the end result as that accomplishes the primary goal, which is to lower his 2013 salary cap charge. With all of the above said, I think that next offseason is when an extension will ultimately get done.

Heath Miller – Miller is set to earn a $5.162 million base salary in 2013 but is coming off of a knee injury that will have him very iffy for the start of the season. He is currently under contract through the 2014 season, but will turn 31 years of age in October. Had Miller not suffered the knee injury I would be more comfortable in telling you that I thought extending him right now would likely be an option, but when the dust clears I don\’t think that he will be extended.

Brett Keisel – Extending Keisel by one year would only be done to clear less than a million in cap space for 2013. Doing this, however, would create a little less than a million in potential dead money in 2014. I don\’t figure that the Steelers need that little bit of cap space in 2013 to do this.

Ziggy Hood – Hood is entering the final year of his rookie contract and if the Steelers feel that he is worth extending a few years, now would be the time to do it, and they likely could do it in a way that it would lower his 2013 cap hit. It all depends on the signing bonus and how the non guaranteed roster bonuses might be worked into the contract. Don\’t hold your breath that this happens, but it is possible.

Maurkice Pouncey – While you would think Pouncey would be a prime candidate for an extension right now, next offseason, when he is scheduled to earn 3.7 million in bonuses might be the better time to do it. The Steelers would be hard pressed to greatly lower his 2013 cap number of $2.528 million by extending him right now.

Jason Worilds – Worilds is entering the final year of his rookie contract and is currently only scheduled to count $985,000 against the 2013 salary cap. Extending him now would mean that his cap number would more than likely go up. 2013 figures to be a season that Worilds could potentially be a starter depending on what happens with James Harrison. If he plays well, and looks to be a long-term keeper, then the Steelers would use the franchise tag on him next offseason and try to work out a long-term deal after that.

Emmanuel Sanders – Sanders is a restricted free agent that will be tendered at an original round level of $1.323 million in a matter of weeks. I smell an extension coming for him at some point during this offseason, but wonder if it will get done prior to March 12 or not.

Steve McLendon – McLendon, like Sanders, is a restricted free agent this offseason and due a tender likely in the amount of $1.323 million. This right of first refusal tender only gives the Steelers the ability to match an offer sheet that McLendon would get from another team as he was originally signed as an undrafted free agent. That means if the Steelers didn\’t match an offer that they wouldn\’t get any compensation from the team signing him away. If the Steelers think that McLendon can start at nose tackle the next few years they could likely work out a three year deal with him that would have a first year cap charge somewhere close to what the tender would be. This means roughly a signing bonus of around $2.5 million or so on a three year deal.

Jonathan Dwyer – I guess it is possible, but I would be suroperised. He will be tendered at $1.323 million, but I think that it ends there.

If any extensions are done over the course of the next few weeks I don\’t expect there to be but a few of them and I would be surprised if a player outside of the ones listed above were to get one.

  • SteelersDepot

    No I have not forgotten about Keenan Lewis. He is an UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENT that will reportedly be allowed to test free agency first. This list consist only of players under contract or that will be tendered RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS.

  • keep up the good work sir. Hope they do sign keenan.

  • Kevin Gobleck

    Hope we restructure the majority of these players

  • Nolrog

    Extending some contracts may be more about clearing cap room next year than it is for this year. Steelers likely will have issues for the next few years.

    What about Harrison? What would giving him an extra year do to his cap number this year and next year? Would that be a viable option to cutting him?

  • Intropy

    Thinking ahead, would extending Pouncey now be a strategy for lowing his 2014 hit? More importantly I think they want to be able to plan on what their line will look like in upcoming seasons and not have to deal with him as a free agent.

    After 2013 will Worilds be restricted or unrestricted?

  • Jefferson_St_Joe

    Hood, McClendon, Sanders, Worlids, and Dwyer all have been around long enough that the Steelers should know their value and whether or not they want to move forward with them. I don’t really like the idea of giving them another year to prove themselves because if they do well, then they are unrestricted next year and the Steelers are likely to still be in a bad cap position where they can’t compete on the open market. With the exception of Dwyer who I probably wouldn’t even tender, I’d be looking to do extensions with these guys that utilize moderate signing bonuses for reasonable contracts in years 2 and 3. Unlike Wallace last year, none of these guys are super prospects who should have any reasonable expectation of big money waiting for them in free agency.

  • LucasY59

    I think most of the RFA’s would be great candidates to give extensions (the 1.323 mil for each of them if they sign their tender is not very cap friendly) some are not even worth the 1.323 (Sylvester if they can get him to sign for 1 mil or less a year then maybe they keep him otherwise let him walk) I would think they want to keep Mclendon around for more than just one more year so why not give him a longer contract? Dwyer or Redman (choose between the two and give one a contract the other should only be bought back for less than the tender amount) and Sanders could also be around a few more years if at the very least for depth so they could also be given extensions instead of tenders. If they want to keep Sanders it might be less expensive to sign him this year instead of next when he is a UFA (same with Worilds, but it looks like resigning him would only hurt this years cap situation) Hood doesn’t look to be a big expense to resign as a UFA so unless it helps this years cap I dont think they should give him a contract this year. I agree with Dave that Ben, Pouncey and Miller would be better to extend next year.

  • LucasY59

    One more thought on this years RFA’s it will also tell which of the players are just in it for the $ because none will be willing to sign an extension this year if they think they will be able to make more $ as a UFA. I dont think any of them will take it to the level that Wallace did this season (hopefully they are more like A.Brown) I hope some will extend, otherwise it will be like this year where there is a good chance that Lewis, Foster and Legursky could all leave because the Steelers can’t afford to resign them especially when Lewis (and Foster to some degree) are now more expensive to sign than they would’ve been last year.

  • SteelersDepot

    Worilds will be unrestricted after the 2013 season.

  • SteelersDepot

    Extending & restructuring him really are not options as it creates even more potential dead money in 2014. They have three choices in my opinion. Keep him at his current number, ask him to take a $3 million or so pay cut, or release him.

  • LucasY59

    I’ve seen a comment about trading Colon and I agree it is unlikely, what about Harrison? he should have more teams interested in him than Colon, with more teams switching to 3-4, a veteran that has been very successful in the scheme could be worth a 4th or 5th rd pick? dont know how or if a trade would help the cap situation. if it is the same as cutting him why not try and trade him instead?

  • HarryBackside

    I don’t think the Steelers would try to trade Harrison. He’s meant to much to the team to try and send him out that way. The Steelers were in the same situation with Joey Porter. Ultimately, they decided to release him instead of trying to trade him, so that he would have the opportunity to play out his career with a team he wanted to play for. They did that out of respect for what he meant to the team, and his part in helping the team win a Super Bowl.

  • steeltown

    Very interesting.. I would think Miller wouldve been the prime candidate for extension, but due to his injury they will be hesitant and will want to wait till after this season, see how his knee reacts

    As mentioned above, I think Bens extension will come after this season, same with Pouncey

    The coaches seem to like Hood, as do I, he gets alot a grief for not being Aaron Smith, but no one is Aaron Smith. Hood is dependable, hardly ever hurt and a solid player. In the end our overall Defense has remained tops in the League since he was drafted and he shouldnt be too expensive, they’ll extend Hood and my guess it will happen soon.

    Redman and Dwyer are a toss up.. seems as if Dwyer’s the more explosive runner of the two, but Redman is better in the passing game than Dwyer. My guess they’ll be tendered and after 2013 one of them will be signed to a multi-year deal… May the battle for #2 begin!
    Sanders will be given an extension…and soon… Wallace is gone, Burress might not be back and Cotchery has one year left on his deal. Even with a high draft pick at the WR postition this year, we need depth
    McLendon is a no brainer, sign this guy to a 3year deal and maybe even save alittle on his 2013 cap hit
    Worilds wont be given an extension, his cap hit is low in 2013, no reason to except the fact that he could have a break out season if he starts (like Lewis) and in turn cost more money after this season as an unrestricted FA

  • Superdriller316

    The first thing Tomlin did when he got to town was get rid of Joey. Why? He was to old and cost to much. No team would trade for him.