During a week in which people had been fatuously trying to spark rumors that the Steelers would take a flyer on a volatile commodity like Michael Vick, the franchise again demonstrated what is a central theme in its continued success: consistency. And they did that by locking up the immensely valuable (though always seemingly underutilized) Heath Miller for six years, thus further making a 2010 offseason, which once seemed so fraught with potential upheaval, look pretty manageable now.
The extension will pay him $35.3 million over six years. With Hines, Max Starks and James Harrison getting extensions this offseason, the biggest priorities remaining are Ryan Clark, Casey Hampton, Deshea Townsend and Jeff Reed. I'm not exactly banking on Fast Willie returning, or even dreading his eventual departure, but one never knows. At his age, Townsend won't command a huge figure and even as one of the more dependable kickers in the league, Skippy shouldn't break the bank. Clark and Hampton are the two question marks, though with the franchise tag left unused, the team knows it will be able to retain at least one of them, if not both.
So after a messy week of civil suits and distractions, the Steelers quickly steer back to a state of normalcy. Hopefully one that will persist.