Boosting The Odds: Steelers Need To Bring In Offensive Free Agents For Training Camp

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Dallas Clark TE, 34 years old

September 11, 2011; Houston, TX, USA; Indianapolis Colts tight end Dallas Clark (44) practices before a game against the Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

I promised myself that I wouldn’t be worried about Heath Miller and his recovery, but then I saw that Dallas Clark is still up for grabs.    The Steelers signed former Steeler Matt Speath in the offseason, but Speath is not the best guy with hands as a tight end.  He’s only caught the ball 49 times in his six year career (that’s an average of 8 touches per season for all you statisticians).  Sure, Spaeth is a great blocking tight end, but Miller was one of Ben’s favorite targets last season – and it wasn’t because he and Miller are the best of bros.  The TE position is out in the open field available for pass catching more often in Todd Haley’s offense, and it is something that the trio (Ben, Miller, Haley) took advantage of last season.

Dallas Clark is not only a consistent run blocker and pass protector, but he was also a favorite target for another future Hall of Famer in Peyton Manning.  In nine seasons with the Colts and Manning, Clark caught for almost 5,000 yards.  He had a decline while playing for the Bucs last season after the Colts let him go for money reasons, but  I’d say Josh Freeman is no Manning.  Clark would be a very good addition to this offense and would certainly give Spaeth a run for his money during camp.  Sure he’s getting long in the tooth, but if Clark can prove he still has those soft hands and can keep low at the line, then he certainly would have an opportunity to start while Miller continues towards a full recovery.  It would certainly put my mind at ease.