At the conclusion of the 2013 season, former Pittsburgh Steelers safety Ryan Clark was quoted as saying that he didn’t see himself as a player willing to play for the veteran league minimum in 2014. Now that three months has passed since he made that statement, he must have had a change of heart. Sort of.
On Monday, Clark agreed to a one-year deal with the Washington Redskins and according to the NFLPA numbers, that contract was a veteran qualifying deal. That means that the longtime Steelers safety will earn a veteran minimum base salary of $955,000 in 2014 and $65,000 for signing. That contract also means that he will only have a $635,000 cap charge in 2014 as well.
On Thursday, former Steelers linebacker Larry Foote said in an interview on 93.7 The Fan that he has no intentions of playing for the veteran minimum in 2014, so we’ll have to see if his mind changes over the course of the next few months like Clark’s did.
In addition to Foote, Eric Metz, the agent of Steelers free agent defensive end Brett Keisel, was recently was quoted as saying that his client “would retire before taking a job that pays minimum wage.”
As far as we know right now, Keisel hasn’t made any free agent visits. He could, however, still be on the Steelers radar, but if so, he isn’t likely to be re-signed until after June 1st.
As far as Clark’s goes, he still could figure into the compensatory formula next offseason despite signing with the Redskins for the minimum. It all depends on the amount of playing time he receives and how well he plays.