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Roethlisberger Contract Extension Unlikely To Happen Until Summer At The Earliest

If the Pittsburgh Steelers are going to give quarterback Ben Roethlisberger a contract extension this offseason, it likely won’t happen until later in the summer, according to general manager Kevin Colbert in a Thursday morning interview on DVE Radio.

“Ben has two years on his contract,” started Colbert. “We want him to finish his career here, he wants to finish his career here. So at a certain point in time we may deal with that, but we’re not at that point yet. The first order of business is to get in [salary cap] compliance. Guys that are future signings, we usually don’t deal with them until the summer.”

Roethlisberger is scheduled to earn a $12.1 million base salary in 2014 with a cap charge of $18.895 million. Come time that an extension is finally worked out, the new money figures to work out to a yearly average of more than $20.1 million, which would be more than Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco is currently averaging in the new deal that he received last offseason.

The Steelers can make a deal like that work and actually lower Roethlisberger’s 2014 cap charge by around $4 million in the process, but there is no guarantee it will get done this offseason, at least according to what team president Art Rooney II said after the 2013 season ended. In the past, the Steelers have extended Roethlisberger when he has had two years left on his current deal.

While the Steelers could certainly wait until next offseason to give Roethlisberger an extension, it would be wise to do it now if at all possible, as the expected number could go even higher depending on how 2014 plays out. Regardless, we will likely have to wait until training camp if it is to get done this offseason and the same goes for tight end Heath Miller, defensive end Cameron Heyward and cornerback Cortez Allen, as all of them could get contract extensions prior to the start of the 2014 season.

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About Dave Bryan

I am, I'm me. 40 something, retired and a life long Steelers fan.
  • Steve

    Ben may not last 2 more years and Miller is on the decline also. Know that it helps the present salary cap, but this is what got us into trouble in the 1st place. Heyward deserves a new contract and has not peaked, so sign him for a few more years.

  • Berlusconi

    Also I don’t think it is a good idea to extend him now, after a season where Ben played all snaps on offense. Unfortunately there is a good chance that Ben will get hurt at some point next season, like in many other seasons, which IMHO could lower his price-tag.

  • steeltown

    If they wait till next year they could be comparing his new deal to the newly extended fat contracts of Phillip Rivers, Eli Manning or Cam Newton who are all in same situation as Ben and due BIG contracts, which will drive up the yearly avg even higher then it already projects to be

  • Berlusconi

    Could be the case, I just don’t believe it

  • Richie

    They should resign Ben now/before season they could use the cap space

  • Richie

    That’s crazy,

  • Chad H

    We have to free up cap space now. If we can lower his cap hit by 4 million then get it done. I would also extend 43 2 more years spread out his money to lower the cap.

  • steeltown


  • NW86

    If you’re saying they need to feel the pressure to lower those two cap hits for 2014, by offering them big bonuses and pushing a bunch of dead money into future years, then it’s a bad idea. If they can work out something team-friendly for the future years, fine, but if not, they should not mortgage their future on these guys.

  • NW86

    Maybe, but there are already several players who just got $20M+ extensions. I don’t see those guys getting any more than that. I can’t really see the market getting driven up much higher in the next 12 months. Maybe in mid-2015, when guys like Luck and Wilson become candidates for extensions.

  • NW86

    I agree 100%. Ben is coming off a great, healthy season, and we’ve seen a lot of QB’s set a new high in the market over the past season. His price tag right now is probably as high as it will ever be. I would wait it out.

  • steeltown

    It will only get higher

  • steeltown

    So you don’t think franchise guys like Phillip Rivers who just had a stellar year and made the playoffs, Cam Newton who made the playoffs and SB winning Eli Manning are going to drive up the market and receive even higher deals than Flacco?? ..I respectfully disagree

  • Richie

    Looking forward to Landry Jones replacing Ben hahhahaha

  • NW86

    I honestly don’t think Rivers or Eli will. Eli is coming off a terrible year, and Rivers had 2 bad years before having a good 2013. They are both north of 30, and they still have 2 years left on their contracts. If they are looking for more than $20M right now, I don’t think their teams are in any hurry to give them that – they can hold off a year.
    Cam is a young, major talent and probably will get $20M+. But Carolina still has 1 more cheap year and then an option year on him, so I don’t think his extension will happen before next summer.

  • blackandgoldBullion

    It’s a tricky business. If the cap does not go up much within the next couple of years, then your team is toast. $20 Million + on the QB and you won;t be able to afford the young promising players that just get into their 2nd contracts. Let’s say the worst happens and they have a terrible year with injuries and guys playing crappy, especially the old guard that get extensions. Then you are royally screwed for years to come, and have to blow it all up and start from scratch with years of misery ahead. At that point you may have to decide that there is no way to win with just Ben and a bunch of dead money and rookies.

    If you can put off these extensions, or new contracts, perhaps by releasing Woodley, then you can see how the year goes. You decide when you have more evidence that you are doing the right thing. If you think you are capable of competing for a Super Bowl in a couple of years, then you make the necessary moves.

    To sum up: Get compliant right now, then in the summer you can work on locking up someone like Heyward. If they want to politely ask Polamalu to take a bit of a cut while extending him, that would be a good risk.

    Really tough decisions.

  • steeltown

    Matt Ryan and Tony Romo got huge deals.. trust that Manning, Rivers and Newton will also and the extensions will happen soon, this offseason or next which is exactly the discussion for Ben.. IMO sooner the better (cheaper)

  • Jason White

    Especially after the “elite” 2013 season Mr. Moneybags Joe Flacco just had. Going off of his “spectacular” season I think Landry Jones should ask for a new contract averaging around 15 million a year for sitting on the bench. Lmao Well I think I splashed enough sarcasm in there for now.

  • NW86

    This is true, and these are all the points that Ben and his agent will be making in negotiations. I guess I’m just making some points that the Steelers should make. Matt Ryan played very will through 2012 and was still young. Tony Romo plays for Jerry Jones, that is not exactly a franchise I would model myself after.
    We all have our opinions, and we won’t know which is the right answer for about another 18 months. Personally, I’d love to see Ben get extended at around $18M/year, with about $35M guaranteed (only ~$11M new money) in 2014-2015. But if Ben is looking for top of the market, $22M/year with $50M guaranteed (~$26M new money), I’d rather see the team hold off. If Ben’s price somehow does go up even higher next year, then I’d rather see them hold off again. If it somehow goes up again, I’d rather see them franchise him and draft a new QB in 2016. I just don’t want to see the Steelers give anyone in their 30’s $50M guaranteed money and suffer the cap consequences for years to come.

  • Chad H

    I would look at deals like Tom Brady. Deals that work out for both sides. Not pushing money down the road.

  • Chad H

    It’s already been stated that releasing Woodley would not save money this year. That’s why I don’t mention it. Next year maybe but for now the Steelers are stuck in a tough position with him.

  • RedCarpetDefense

    Buy low/sell high. I agree lock him up now while it’s cheaper to do so. This team finished on the brink of a postseason return with the rookie and backup players gaining much game experience, new (better) coaches added this off season, the potential loss of veteran players which in turn frees up $$, possible FA acquisition(s?), injured players returning healthy and a smart draft, as I’ve said before the pendulum is definitely on the upswing.

    If the Steelers get to and go deep into the playoffs in 2014 Ben’s price will be higher. Now let’s say the Steelers get to and win the darn Super Bowl (no prediction) it’ll be astronomical.

  • steeltown

    Yep. That’s pretty much my sentiment.

  • JT

    People don’t see to want to understand that. They just want to hang Woodley for the failures of the entire defense.

  • Jefferson_St_Joe

    I agree with you 100%. Unless the cap goes up, the high end salary for QBs will be around $20M. Ben will be older, so his value is not likely to exceed that. The Steelers need to take advantage of these 2 years where they pay him a very team friendly salary instead of throwing more money at him. I think letting him play out the next 2 years and franchising him should be the way to go unless he comes in with a very team friendly proposal.

  • alex

    now that is the greatest contract signing the Steelers have ever had, in light of its timing and all our other underperforming contracts of this decade for us…

  • alex

    and guys like Flacco and Cutler setting the bar for a Ben signing…

    that just tastes bad all day…

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