Emmanuel Sanders, Steelers preparing to part ways?


In our Offseason Forecast series, Gregg Rosenthal predicted the Pittsburgh Steelers will allow free-agent wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders to sign with another team.

With the offseason underway, Around The League explores what's next for all 32 teams.

AFC East
» Bills | Dolphins | Jets | Patriots
AFC North
» Bengals | Browns | Ravens | Steelers
AFC South
» Colts | Jaguars | Texans | Titans
AFC West
» Broncos | Chargers | Chiefs | Raiders
NFC East
» Cowboys | Eagles | Giants | Redskins
NFC North
» Bears | Lions | Packers | Vikings
NFC South
» Buccaneers | Falcons | Panthers | Saints
NFC West
» Cardinals | 49ers | Rams | Seahawks

Around The League isn't alone in that sentiment.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's Ed Bouchette and Gerry Dulac each have professed the opinion that Sanders will leave "for a number of reasons."

Sanders has begun preparations for the open market, parting ways with agent Jordan Woy last week, per Liz Mullen of the Sports Business Journal.

Already reported to be on the Jets' radar, Sanders could also draw interest from the Patriots for a second-consecutive offseason if Julian Edelman flies the coop.

Although Sanders set career-highs across the board, he failed to meet expectations as Mike Wallace's replacement opposite Antonio Brown. The Steelers have reason to believe 2013 third-round draft pick Markus Wheaton is not only better suited for the role, but also offers more playmaking ability.

Sanders' loss will still leave a lack of depth at the position. In addition to trying to bring back veteran Jerricho Cotchery, the Steelers have indicated to Ben Roethlisberger that they intend to find a tall receiver early in the NFL Draft, per Dulac.

It seems that Roethlisberger has been publicly campaigning for that big, physical red-zone threat since Plaxico Burress absconded to New York in 2005.

Among the 2014 prospects that fit Pittsburgh's requirements are Texas A&M's Mike Evans, Florida State's Kelvin Benjamin and Penn State's Allen Robinson.

On the latest edition of the "Around The League Podcast," the guys debate Joe Philbin's future in Miami before playing another round of "Win Wess' Toaster."