Before the season started, everyone laughed at the Seahawks for bringing in Terrell Owens, along with almost every other available receiver who had been notable in the NFL five years ago, to help with their limited depth at receiver. The only conceivable over-the-hill wideout they didn’t call up was Plaxico Burress and that was only because his asking price was too high.
So now it’s time for pointing and laughing at the Steelers. Not just because they’ll be forced to start Charlie Batch this week at quarterback against the Browns. Also because they might be reunited with their old friend, Plax, who the team drafted back in 2000. Before winning a Super Bowl, achieving greater notoriety and shooting himself in the leg as a member of the Giants, Plaxico had a few pretty good years with the Steelers. In fact, Ben Roethlisberger has spent almost all of his pro career pining for another tall receiver after he experienced the joy of lobbing jump balls to Plax in THE BEN’s rookie season of 2004.
Even though the Steelers had looked at bringing Plax back before he signed with the Jets for a year in 2011, the news caught everyone off-guard because it was assumed that Pittsburgh was only really banged up at quarterback. Don’t worry, they’re bringing in lesser options at that position, too. Former backups Mike Kafka and Brian Hoyer will be getting a tryout. As bad as that is for the Steelers, it also has to hurt to be the guy only considered good enough to back up Charlie Batch.
Also, searching for old stories about Plaxico being unhappy in the Steelers offense, I stumbled across this Redskins fan forum discussion from 2005 in which ‘Skins fans express disinterest in the idea of their team going after Burress in free agency because they didn’t think Plax was any better than Rod Gardner. Sorry, I know. It’s time for laughing at the Steelers. I shouldn’t be trying to pass the schadenfreude around.