Is Santonio Holmes Returning to the Pittsburgh Steelers?


Yesterday ESPN’s Scott Brown answered questions via Twitter.  The first question for Brown was asking about the rumors that have Santonio Holmes returning to the Steel City assuming veteran Lance Moore is granted his request to be released.  Holmes turns 31 in March and he only caught eight passes for 67 yards last season while playing for the Chicago Bears.

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Last summer I wrote this post about bringing Yo Holmes back to Pittsburgh.  I wanted the Steelers to bring him back because I wasn’t sure about the Steelers wide receiving corps after Antonio Brown. I did not give the young Steelers wideouts enough credit.  Markus Wheaton had a decent second year catching 53 pass for over 600 yards.  Martavis Bryant stepped up and caught 8 touchdowns in his rookie season.  While the Steelers didn’t get much out of Moore and next to nothing from Darrius Heyward-Bey, who is currently a free agent, the Steelers offense did not need Santonio Holmes last year.

Here is Brown’s answer to the Twitter question:

"“I see half of the equation happening.  Lance Moore wants out of Pittsburgh and I think the Steelers will grant the veteran wide receiver his wish since he never really fit into the offense.  I don’t think Santonio Holmes will be brought back to provide depth at wide receiver considering he turns 31 in March and caught just eight passes in nine games last season before the Chicago Bears released him.  Moore was clearly frustrated with his role last season but did not complain about it.  Holmes, who has never been known as a team-first player, might not be so quiet about if the Steelers brought him back to play limited snaps.I understand that this time of year generates nostalgia for Holmes because his game-winning touchdown catch in Super Bowl XLIII is replayed over and over.  But it’s time for Steelers fans to move past Holmes.  I think the organization did that a long time ago.” – Brown on Holmes/Moore"

It’s hard to argue with Brown’s answer.  Lance Moore should be given his release obviously.  As for Santonio there is little reason to bring back a guy who is on the verge of turning 31, who has not caught for over 1,000 yards since 2009.  With Antonio Brown, Wheaton, and Bryant clearly leading the Steelers wide receiving corps, the fourth receiver the Steelers use will likely not see the field all that much.  It doesn’t seem likely that a person like Holmes would sign up for that role.

If the Steelers really do want a veteran free agent wide receiver to fill in for the loss of Moore and Heyward-Bey there are plenty of other options on the market.  Here is a list of all the free agents available this offseason.  The Steelers would be much better off bringing back another former Steelers wideout.  Nate Washington, who turns 32 in August, can still play and be a deep threat, as we all witnessed this season.  Holmes only played in nine games last year and hasn’t played 16 games since 2011.  Meanwhile, Washington hasn’t missed a game since 2006.

Brown was correct in saying that is just nostalgia that makes Steelers fans hope for a Holmes return.  But the truth is, he may not have the skills to even play in the NFL anymore and there are clearly better options out there for the Steelers, both on the field and also in the locker room.

What do you think Steelers Nation?  Bring back Santonio Holmes or is it finally time to forget about this idea?

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