Steelers may have an interest in Sharper

The Steelers hosted cornerback Ty Law at their practice facility Thursday, but it is another veteran defensive back who was released by his team on the same day could draw their interest.

Green Bay free safety Darren Sharper release by the Packers on Thursday wasn't a surprise to anyone, since he was to have received a $2.6 million roster bonus this weekend.

The Steelers wouldn't want to pay Sharper, one of the NFL's top free safeties over the past five or six years, that kind of money. But they could be a nice partner for the 29-year-old Sharper to land should he like a shot at a Super Bowl.

Some have compared Sharper's situation to that of New England's Rodney Harrison, who was released by San Diego two years ago and signed with New England. Harrison was the glue that held the New England secondary together in 2004 when Law suffered a season-ending Lis Franc injury in a game at Pittsburgh.

An eight-year veteran, the 6-2, 210-pound Sharper has 36 career interceptions, including four in 2004. Though he's not considered a big-hitter like Harrison, he's a solid tackler and recorded 70 total tackles last season, when he earned his third trip to the Pro Bowl.

Current Steelers' free safety Chris Hope is coming off his first season as a starter, but recorded just one interception. Hope did do a fine job in run support, but there are some in the organization who feel the Steelers need more of a playmaker at free safety to team with Pro Bowl strong safety Troy Polalmalu.

Hope is a restricted free agent, though the Steelers have offered him a one-year tender.

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