A Look At What’s Potentially Next For The Steelers After A Very Busy Wednesday

We knew a day like Wednesday was forthcoming for the Pittsburgh Steelers, who made six moves in an effort to get compliant with the $133 million salary cap number by Tuesday. With the result of those six moves resulting in the team being right at the magic $133 million number, there’s still a little meat left on the salary cap bone for them to gnaw off before the start of the new league year.

While there are certainly no guarantees, it appears as though all of the contract terminations are done. Sure, there’s a possibility that cornerback Ike Taylor still could be released between now and Tuesday, but I have a feeling the Steelers were able to work something out with him as far as his contract goes. That something is most likely a reduction of some sorts to the $7 million base salary he is currently scheduled to earn in 2014.

In addition to trying to figure out what to do with Taylor, the Steelers will likely continue to try to hammer out some sort of extension with linebacker Jason Worilds after giving him the $9,754,000 transition tag on Monday, which he’s already agreed to accept. That extension could happen as soon as Thursday or talks very well could drag on throughout the summer. When and if the two sides come to terms, it will more than likely drop Worilds’ 2014 cap charge by as much as $6.5 million.

In addition to waiting to see what happens with Worilds and Taylor between now and Tuesday, I still fully expect the contract of wide receiver Antonio Brown to be restructured for a second straight year. The Steelers stand to gain 3,952,500 in cap space in 2014 by taking it to the full amounts allowed and personally, I’m a bit surprised that we haven’t heard about that happening by now.

As far as the contract of linebacker Lawrence Timmons goes, the Steelers can clear another $3.93 million of cap space by once again restructuring his contract to the fullest. Looking at their situation right now, I would say there’s a 50/50 chance that happens.

For those of you eagerly waiting to help linebacker LaMarr Woodley pack his bags, you might be waiting a while. As I pointed out this morning, the Steelers don’t stand to gain anything by releasing him now, outside of being called good Samaritans for letting him hit the free agent market before the start of the new league year. I’m not going to guarantee it, but don’t be surprised if we are still talking about the future status of Woodley for a few more months.

As far as a possible contract extension for quarterback Ben Roethlisberger goes, general manager Kevin Colbert recently made it sound like those talks might not heat up until later this summer. In addition, team president Art Rooney II said earlier in the offseason that there’s a possibility it doesn’t get done at all this offseason. I think it will at some point before the start of the 2014 season, but personally would be surprised if it happened between now and Tuesday.

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

    I think people forget the close personal relationship Ike has with Rooney. I think they will take care of him to fullest extent possible. He will not get released. I’m not saying he wont get a pay cut, but if he does, it will be done in a way that still favors the player.

  • WIINGY

    forget trying to improve an 8-8 team. Lets keep the stew line open.

  • george

    Why release Woodley? It wont clear much cap space this year and causes dead money in 2015. Maybe the Wordley signing motivates Woodley to fight for reps this year.

  • Jollyrob68

    Release Woodley after Worilds is signed long term or after the Draft.

  • Brian Tollini

    Haters will hate, but Ike Taylor at a reduced salary still has value to this team.

  • Shannon Stephenson

    that was funny.

  • Shannon Stephenson

    Woodley could still get restructured as well but it depends on where the Steelers see him in the future. If he isnt restructured I believe this maybe his last year here.

  • 243546

    I think a deal gets done with Worilds sooner rather than later. I can’t think of a reason why Worilds would have taken himself off the free agent market, if he didn’t feel confident that the Steelers were going to make him an offer in the ball park of what he was looking for.

  • Douglas Andrews

    Agreed

  • 243546

    No reason to make any decisions on Woodley right now. Worilds, Woodley, and Jones means having quality and depth at the OLB position. The only reason to release Woodley, would be to sign one or two starting caliber free agents, who would provide an upgrade to another position on the roster.

  • cp72

    Releasing Woodley before June 1 actually costs us 580 k of cap space but he is off the books and no dead money in future years. If you do it after that date it’s 8 million of dead money in 2015 and you add I think like 5 million to the 2014 cap.

    As stated before there is no reason to release him until after the draft, but that June 1st date looms large.

  • Jim McCarley

    I just love how many people are so good at running a sports team , even though they never have…..I put my faith in the Steelers’ organization, simply because I have little choice and they are the most successful NFL team since the 70’s. Even though I keep up with the team on a daily basis, I don’t get too distraught or happy until the smoke clears and we see what we have. Right now, there’s plenty of smoke left to clear….

  • NW86

    Well said.

  • steeltown

    No doubt

  • Alex Redfield

    I’ll disagree with you. While cutting him now doesn’t gain us anything in 2014, it helps immensely in 2015 and 2016. If we are planning on cutting the guy anyways, why not get the full 26 million dollars in cap relief over the next two years? 580k is basically nothing in terms of cap space. If we release him post June 1 we will still be on the hook for about 8.5 million in dead money next season, while only saving us about 5.5 this season. If we clear up enough space in 2015 and 2016 by cutting him we could sign a FA that would actually contribute to the team and be a piece that helps get us over the top and back into the top tier in the AFC.

  • cp72

    Uh…I think that’s what I said above. I said no reason to release him until after the draft. Which is in May and in case you don’t have a calendar handy come before June.

  • Thumper833

    You are talking past each other. You are saying they dont gain anything this year by cutting him now.He is saying to get the cap relief ie off the books in 15 and 16 he needs to be cut before Tuesday.,

  • cp72

    No he doesn’t he needs to be cut before June 1st to clear the books for 2015 2016. If its tomorrow or the end of May I doesn’t matter.

  • Thumper833

    I see. I thought differently. Could have sworn I read that waiting will drop his hit this year but push the balance to future years .

  • Will Hammer

    Ike will stay 1 more yr . Ike will take that pay cut and retire a Steeler .

  • cp72

    Well you’re not totally wrong your above statement is true but the date that happens is June 1st…so it’s all good.

  • Steeler Wheeler

    Woodley and Ike played several seasons at a huge discounts before signing the current player friendly deals…The Steelers haven’t forgotten that and will get them their money if they can.

  • Steeler Wheeler

    You’re definitely right, but it would be a lot more like church and a lot less like a Steeler blog if we all said “we trust the best run organizations in sports.” Wouldn’t be fun to read at all. no discussuion, no arguments, no what-ifs.

    What-if some well read fans like me got control of the Steelers…I know I could run some under-performers out of town, make rash coaching changes, perpetually terrible drafts…Hey, I think I just filled out my resume for the Cleveland Browns!