Let me preface this piece by saying the Pittsburgh Steelers do not overreact to any situation. They will not make a decision because of ‘fan-sentiment’ or because it worked on Madden 25 (yes I’ve had this suggested).
Lastly, they rarely make trades during the season let alone at all so for those of you who have already realized that Mike Tomlin, Todd Haley, Kevin Colbert and Dick LeBeau will be around for the remainder of the season then enjoy this piece for what it is.
For those of you who believe there is still time to make moves of the personnel and coaching variety in an effort to quickly fix what ails this team, then by all means enjoy the possibilities that I throw out here. Some are realistic and some are far-fetched but I don’t know that any are or would be impossible.
First things first, get Emmanuel Sanders on the trading block. It was and will continue to be my opinion that the Steelers should have let him go to New England when he signed their offer sheet as a restricted free agent. Hindsight being 20-20, it’s far easier to suggest this now because who could have known the team would start 0-4?
That said, did anyone of you think this team was Super Bowl bound regardless? Sanders has some skills but I have found his blocking to get lazier as the season has played out and his consistent whining when he doesn’t catch a ball has already gotten old. Get something for him while you can. There is any number of teams who could use Sanders as a number three receiver so get on the phone Kevin Colbert.
Secondly, I would put a few lines out for guys like Brett Keisel and Ziggy Hood. Both guys are going to be free agents at the close of the season and while speculation is that Keisel will retire, why not see if you can get a seventh rounder for him? There is always a need for defensive linemen in the NFL so why not? Obviously this is a long, long-shot at best but why not consider it?
In regards to Hood, he has failed to live up to his first round draft status and even occasional flashes of decent play isn’t enough to make anyone think he is the future at defensive end. He falls under the same file as Sanders does in terms of getting something for him while you can. Again, this is an extreme case of thinking outside the box but isn’t that what we are left with when we are 0-4?
Speaking of “thinking outside the box,” I’m going outside the box factory on this one. It has the same chances that you or I will be struck be Optimus Prime falling out of the sky but you’re reading this because you want to know how to re-build this team right?
Therefore I suggest if you’re Kevin Colbert that you put in a few calls to teams who are desperate for quarterback help and see if any are interested in Ben Roethlisberger.
No, I’m not nuts. Well, maybe a little but that’s beside the point. First of all, there are few teams who could handle his salary so let’s not even bother going forward. Ok, let’s do it for laughs and giggles… If I’m the Houston Texans and my QB has been less than standard through four games why wouldn’t I listen?
Think I’m crazy? Texans’ message boards have already been discussing this possibility as early as two weeks ago. The 2014 NFL Draft looks like it will be loaded with quarterback talent too so don’t delay Mr. Colbert.
What any or all of these moves would do is give the Steelers more draft picks. Considering their recent drafting history, that doesn’t create much confidence but the more picks you have the more chances you have of getting one or two right. The Steelers are lacking talent in a number of areas and they won’t all be addressed over the course of one draft and free agency period.
Again, only the Sanders move is one I can see happening but even that appears to be a one-in-a-million scenario anyway. The Steelers will ride with the group they have and that’s just what they do. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.
It’s always interesting to think about things like this and even if none of them happen you could always go play Madden.
Marc Uhlmann writes for and co-owns www.steelcityblitz.com. Follow him on Twitter @steeldad and follow the website at @SCBlitz. He can be heard Mondays on Trib-Live Radio at 630pm ET talking Steelers.