Cut players won’t be returning to the Steelers

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When the Steelers cut several veteran members of the team to get under the cap earlier this month, there wasn’t much said about the chances that any of them could return at lower salaries.

For wide receiver Hines Ward, who announced his retirement, and defensive end Aaron Smith, who hinted at it, that’s not much of a consideration. It isn’t much of one for linebacker James Farrior or guard Chris Kemoeatu either, judging by comments made by general manager Kevin Colbert at the owners meetings when asked if any of the players could return, something Farrior hinted at when he was released.

“No,” Colbert said via the team’s website. “When we terminated those players we felt that their time as a Steeler was over and it was time for everybody to move forward. I think when they all left they know that you can never say never. But they also know that was their last time as a Steeler.”

No real surprise there. While salary cap realities dictated the timing of the moves, the players let go by the Steelers were all performing at a lower level than they had at earlier points in their careers. Given their ages, there’s not much chance that a rebound is right around the corner and the Steelers cut cords that needed to be cut.

That’s not to say there isn’t something lost in the process. Colbert said that he was looking for new leaders to fill the shoes of the departed players and admitted that he doesn’t know if there are players capable of doing so.

12 responses to “Cut players won’t be returning to the Steelers

  1. “I think when they all left they know that you can never say never. But they also know that was their last time as a Steeler.”

    Well that’s a logical statement.

  2. Kemo-eat-u is only 29.

    They have a few injuries at guard during training camp and I bet they give him another look if the price is right.

  3. Trying to figure out where the news is here. Typically when a player is cut they are not brought back. Especially with the Steelers who don’t make emotional decisions regarding their personnel.

  4. At least Colbert handled the question with more class than that Tom Donahoe did. Colbert was even right.

    Donahoe was flat out wrong when he said of former Steelers on the free agent market, most notably future Hall of Famer Rod Woodson, “We’re not the Salvation Army. It’s not an open door and just everybody come on back in. We want guys who can make us better.”

    From 1998 to 2003, the starting safeties for the Steelers had a combined total of Pro Bowls and All Pro awards of (…wait for it…) zero.

    From 1998 to 2003, Rod Woodson made 4 Pro Bowls and was named 1st Team All Pro in 2002.

    Pittsburgh starting safeties from 1998 to 2003:
    Darren Perry (FS)
    Myron Bell (SS)
    Lee Flowers (SS)
    Travis Davis (FS)
    Brent Alexander (FS)
    Mike Logan (SS)

    Darren Perry was a terrific player but he would have looked even better at SS with Woodson at FS. Of course, then we would have missed out on Lee Flowers’ witty commentary each week.

    I’d rather have had Woodson.

  5. @lawboy2000 …

    Astute observation about Donahoe, the most overrated player personnel man in Steeler history.

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