File this one under idle speculation with a twist of fun. But it's also a Question of the Day, so take it weely, weely seriously.
Remember way back in the old days. Way back when. A long time ago. Roughly, five years ago to be exact. While the Bengals were thoroughly entertaining joyous fans with a circus-like offense, giving guys like Carson Palmer, Chad Johnson, Rudi Johnson, T.J. Houshmandzadeh, Chris Henry and even Kelley Washington tons of credit -- I have to resist the squirrel. Must. Resist. The. Squirrel -- the best unit on that offense was the team's offensive line. Willie Anderson was finally earning Pro Bowls and Levi Jones was named as an alternate, being one of the league's better left tackles. Hands down, the standard for centers in this city is Rich Braham. Bobbie Williams has received two contracts since then and Eric Steinbach was the most versatile offensive linemen, starting at left tackle, guard and even center, that we've seen in the past 20 years.
Fast forward. Our center Kyle Cook is good, if for anything, helping us ditch The Distraction, Eric Ghiaciuc. Williams is older. Andrew Whitworth, a rookie in 2006 starting 12 games, is the team's best offensive lineman. They rotate the left guard between two quality players in Nate Livings and Evan Mathis while right tackle hasn't been the same since Willie left for Baltimore.
Now, you have to keep in mind that I've know that this has come up each year for a few seasons now. But every year there's a hint of speculation from that team in Northern Ohio that Eric Steinbach could be on the outs, mostly for his contract. However, according to Marla Ridenour of the Akron Beacon Journal, the Browns could make a decision on Steinbach because of his contract.
Left guard Eric Steinbach's massive contract also looms, especially if the new front office decides his deal (which calls for base salaries of $5.75 million, $6.25 million, $6 million and $6.25 million in 2010-2013) is a luxury the team can't afford.
According to RotoWorld, Steinbach "graded out poorly across the board in '09 and was given a hint when the Browns worked him with the second team in OTAs. We haven't heard of Steinbach running as a backup in camp, but the team did add to the guard position this offseason."
Your Question of the Day: If Steinbach is released by Cleveland, would you sign him?
In the meantime, here's the Squirrel.