View Full Version : Porter Angling to stay with the Steelers

01-02-2007, 12:40 AM

By John Harris
Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Bill Cowher and outside linebacker Joey Porter are closer than your typical coach and player.

When Porter addressed the possibility of holding out prior to the season because he wanted to renegotiate his contract, Cowher begged him to report to training camp because he needed his fiery leadership.

Against his better wishes, Porter complied because of his tremendous respect for Cowher.

In the opener against Miami, Porter kissed Cowher on the sideline after returning an interception for a touchdown.

Following Sunday's 23-17 overtime win over Cincinnati, Porter put his relationship with Cowher to the test when he asked Cowher in the locker room if he was leaving.

Even if Cowher leaves after 15 seasons, Porter, 29, insists he wants to finish his career with the team that drafted him. He said it's wrong to assume he doesn't want to remain with the Steelers if Cowher isn't around.

"No matter who the coach is, I play for the Steelers. I'm the type of player I want to start what I finish," Porter said immediately after the game. "I started here, I want to finish here. Give me the opportunity to be a lifelong Steeler."

Following Monday's exit interview with Cowher, Porter re-emphasized his loyalty to the Steelers. He said he doesn't know whether Cowher is coming back, but that Cowher's decision won't impact what he does.

Porter feels like he's done his part. His sack total dipped from 10 1/2 a year ago, when he led all NFL linebackers, to seven, which led the Steelers during a season in which they missed the playoffs after winning Super Bowl XL.

Porter recorded two more tackles this season (63-61) and continued his role as the team's emotional leader.

"At the end of the day, it's going to be up to the organization. I'm here," said Porter, who ranks fourth on the Steelers' all-time list with 60 career sacks. "At the beginning of the season, everyone wants to know, 'Oh, why does he have such a bad attitude?'

"I've never had an attitude toward the Steelers. This is home for me. I knew how it was going to be when I got back, I was going to resume my position as a leader and try to win football games."

Im sorry, but I just can't see this team without Joey. Whether the man has a lost a step or not is up for debate, but personally at a time when we need as much leadership as we can get, letting him go is just not the right thing to do. This team will be trying to regain it's identity, and Porter is one of those that can help do it, especially on defense. Whether he has to split time with another player or fight for his job like everyone else, I don't care. I just want him here.

K Train
01-02-2007, 12:43 AM
i dont really think hes lost a step....he gets doubled alot but i think hes a great OLB, let him get a full camp in a be 100%....i hope he stays

01-02-2007, 12:45 AM
I honestly wasnt sure he'd want to come back if Cowher wasn't here but it sounds like he's full bore ready to keep playing for us. The main thing will be the money and if he wants more than we think he's worth. Hopefully he'll be willing to negotiate enough to help make it happen when the time comes.

01-02-2007, 08:24 AM
What seems a bit unfair to me, is that Bill wanted JOEY to stay even though he was getting less than he felt he deserved, but apparently Bill isn't willing to do the same thing he asked of his player.

House of Steel
01-02-2007, 09:16 AM
Excellent Point, SteelerWoman, Oh so true. I want Joey to stay as a Steeler cause he does fit the mold of what a Steeler Defensive Linebacker is. Same goes for Cowher, I can see where your coming from. That is like contradicting and being a backstabber when you ask your player not to hold out, but yet, the Head Coach is doing exactly the same here in the offseason wanting more money or I am retiring. I hate this so much.

01-02-2007, 09:47 AM
Joey was seriously considering holding out and not playing at all, which would really put the team in a bind at OLB so Cowher convinced him to play this year knowing that he'd get a good shot at a new deal for more money.

BC was never considering holding out and putting the team in a bind in the sense that Joey was. Cowher was going to play this year and then decide what to do.

I can see where the 2 situations are similar, but they are different also.

01-02-2007, 10:47 AM
Also, Cowher is not leaving for money...he wants a life with his wife and kids. I don't think Joey wants to leave but it is a business. I can't imagine pregame without Joey walking around with his jersey over his pads and firing our team up. If he leaves, I will miss him, but I will also try to understan his point. I truely believe he wants to be a Steeler until he retires, and hopefully he is.

01-02-2007, 10:54 AM
IMO, Porter lost a couple steps this season! I still love the guy but his head wasn't in the game this year and his stats showed it. I know he missed a few games because of injuries but if you look at the games he played his stats are nothing to write home about. I don't think he can really go anywhere and make more money because he wasn't the Joey Porter we all have come to know him as this season. He does have that fiery attitude though but he would be one expensive cheerleader!

BlacknGold Bleeder
01-02-2007, 11:12 AM
Porter had a good year. I believe his sacks were down because the defense played things different this year,IMO. He was dropping into coverage alot more, it's hard to get sacks when your covering a TE or playing a zone.
To me the defense just wasn't playing as aggressive this year, I don't believe they blitzed as much. With Troy being hampered and Clark a newbie and Ike not playing like last year, I think Lebeau turned it back a few notches and tried to cover people instead of forcing the issue. How many times did we really send all the troops like in the past? We would overwhelm the offense with more people to block than you had blockers, ala Ratbirds this year.
Porter should be given a new contract with INCENTIVES, he either puts up or shuts up.

01-02-2007, 11:50 AM
The whole thing with Porter will come down to how much the Steelers are willing to pay him and how much he thinks he is worth. We'll see how much he really wants to stay a Steeler.
We have lost better LB's than Porter before who wanted more money so I don't think this will be any different.

01-02-2007, 11:57 AM
What seems a bit unfair to me, is that Bill wanted JOEY to stay even though he was getting less than he felt he deserved, but apparently Bill isn't willing to do the same thing he asked of his player.

I agree...I understand Bill's been with them for 15 years but why would he want to coach for anyone else once his year is up in 2007 that allows him to coach again in 2008...I'm glad to hear Joey is staying a Steeler but really wish Bill would stay a few more years!! It's just not the same without him....I just can't imagine anyone else out there!!!! :tt02:

dick rasile
01-02-2007, 12:04 PM
Yes we have lost better LB's than Porter, in fact we have very good players all over the league because of the stupid cap.

01-02-2007, 12:11 PM
Yes we have lost better LB's than Porter, in fact we have very good players all over the league because of the stupid cap.

Well if it wasn't for the cap the Steelers would probably end up in the same situation as the Pirates. We wouldn't be able to spend what some of the bigger market teams would spend. That and the Cowboys and Redskins would end up being the Yankees/Red Sox of the NFL.....lol

01-02-2007, 02:48 PM
You should be thankful for the cap.

01-02-2007, 02:52 PM
We should all be thankful that the NFL and NFLPA agreed on the CBA otherwise we might not be playing at all.

01-02-2007, 05:21 PM
I think porter will stay we just need to pay him i dont see him plaing anywhere else