Plaxico Burress hasn’t played in an NFL game since November of 2008 and will soon turn 34. He’s spent the majority of the past two years in prison. It’s virtually impossible to say what’s left in Burress’ tank, but Pittsburgh Post-Gazette columnist Ron Cook is making a case for the Steelers to sign him.
According to Cook, “it makes perfect sense” for the Steelers to give Plax another shot because he was “a great teammate” during his time in Pittsburgh and gave quarterback Ben Roethlisberger a big receiver with playmaking ability.
“I couldn’t say one negative thing about him,” said Steelers offensive coordinator Bruce Arians back in 2009. “He was a quality kid. He never gave me anything but great effort on the field and in the classroom.”
The Steelers let Burress depart in free agency six years ago because they couldn’t afford both him and Hines Ward. After a holdout in 2005, Ward received a four-year extension worth $25.83 million. Burress signed a six-year, $25 million deal with the Giants.
“I remember him crying at our meeting after the [AFC] championship game when he said goodbye because he knew it was his last meeting as a Steeler,” added Arians. “He wasn’t the only one crying because he was leaving.”
Ward remains a Steeler, and the team has developed youngsters Mike Wallace, Emmanuel Sanders, and Antonio Brown behind him.
Burress gets out of jail next Monday. An unrestricted free agent — the Giants released him before the prison term — Plax could add size and some veteran savvy to the Pittsburgh receiver corps if they’re willing to take a chance.