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Steelers Franchise Starks

February 20, 2009


The Steelers have placed the franchise tag on Max Starks keeping him from entering free agency.

Last year before the season the Steelers put transition tag on Starks despite the fact that he had lost the starting job to Willie Colon (every Pittsburgher’s favorite colon). It was a puzzling decision as it meant the Steelers would pay $6 million to a back up. As we know now, it was a brilliant move because Marvel Smith missed most of this past season because of back injuries and Starks filled it adequately.

Starks will make $8.5 million next season unless the Steelers can work out a long-term deal. Franchising Starks could also mean the end of Smith’s career unless he wants to take a pay-cut because of his injury ridden last few seasons.

What I find most interesting about this, is that the Steelers chose not to put the tag on CB Bryant McFadden. He’ll be a free agent next week and is going to expect to ink a big contract with either the Steelers or another team. Dependingon the market, McFadden could easily end up else where.

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