Pittsburgh Steelers defensive end Brett Keisel is down at the Super Bowl in New Orleans again this year promoting the Head and Shoulders brand and he sat down for an interview with Mike Florio and Erik Kuselias on Tuesday’s edition of Pro Football Talk.
Keisel was asked by Florio if he thought that some rebuilding needed be done by the Steelers this offseason in order to get them back in contention next season after finishing 8-8 this past season.
“Yes, I definitely think that we need to do a little rebuilding,” Keisel said. “We need to get some guys in that are going to help us make that next step. When you lose some key guys like Aaron Smith, Hines Ward, James Farrior, these guys were amazing players and amazing leaders. And I feel like more people need to step us leaders and we need more guys to make plays when the plays are there. Younger guys need to start making big splash plays for us to win.”
Keisel was then asked if he thought that outside linebacker James Harrison, who is scheduled to count $10.035 million against the salary cap in 2013, will be back next season.
“I do, I do,” said Keisel. “I think they may need to negotiate a little bit, but I still feel like James can play.”
Keisel is right when he says that the teams need more leaders to emerge in 2013 as that has been evident for some time now. As far as Harrison goes, he most certainly is going to have to take one heck of a pay cut this offseason if he is going to avoid being a cap causality. I have long speculated that Harrison will need to drop his $6.57 million base salary that he is scheduled to earn in 2013 by at least $3 million as the Steelers will be strapped for cap room even after they restructure the contracts of a few other players. We should know that outcome by the middle of March as the Steelers will need to compliant with the Rule of 51 by then.
As far as the younger players that Keisel talks about needing to make more splash plays next season, it doesn\’t matter how young or old that player is as the Steelers failed to get many splash plays out of the entire team last season, especially on the defensive side of the ball where he plays.
Keisel was also asked during the interview about his thoughts on Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco and if he now ranks up there with the likes of Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, and Drew Brees.
“I don’t think he’s as good as those guys right now,” Keisel said about Flacco. “But I said earlier someone was asking about should he get paid. Sure man! We should all get paid.
“I think he’s a very good quarterback. I think he’s starting to play his best ball and obviously he’s led these guys right down here to the biggest game of all.”
Keisel also said during the interview that he thinks the Ravens will beat the San Francisco 49ers Sunday because of the extra motivation that they have to send linebacker Ray Lewis out a champion.
You can watch the full interview in the video below as Keisel also promotes his upcoming Shear the Beard Charity Event that will take place next week when he returns from New Orleans.