POSTED 1:17 p.m. EDT, September 4, 2006 Profootballtalk.com ANOTHER STEELER GIVES A HOMETOWN DISCOUNT There's a new dynamic playing out in the Steel City. After an era in which plenty of guys parlayed Pittsburgh stardom into free-agent paydays elsewhere, some players are taking less than what they might have gotten on the open market to stick around with the Steelers. Last week, running back Willie Parker opted to cash in the chips from a breakout sophomore season with a deal far less valuable than what he would have seen on the open market, if he continued to play in 2006 and 2007 as he did in 2005. Now, cornerback Ike Taylor has traded in his one-year $1.573 million restricted free agent tender for a five-year, $22.5 million deal with a $6.4 million signing bonus. The last corners to sign long-term extensions with the Steelers were Chad Scott and Dewayne Washington, two of the first guys who got a taste of the new revenue streams flowing from the team's Heinz Field digs. Scott signed a six-year, $24 million deal with a $5.4 million signing bonus, and Washington signed a five-year, $19.8 million with a $5.2 million signing bonus. The difference is that the deals signed by Scott and Washington were closer in line with the then-existing market for high-level cornerbacks. In 2001, Ronde Barber re-signed with the Bucs on the brink of free agency; he got a six-year, $24 million contract with a $7 million signing bonus Five years later, Taylor's deal falls short of the six-year, $32 million contract and $10 million signing bonus paid to cornerback Brian Williams, who jumped from the Vikings to the Jaguars. For Taylor, who became a 15-game starter in 2005 and also brings that Lombardi Trophy experience for which some teams will overpay, he likely would have gotten something more in line with the Williams deal if Taylor had played out the 2006 season and become a free agent. Sure, the Steelers could have slapped the franchise tag on Taylor next year. But the organization rarely uses the thing; linebacker Jason Gildon is the last player on whom the restriction was used, back in 2002. Plus, with truly indispensable safety Troy Polamalu on deck to become a free agent in 2008, the Steelers might not have wanted to be in a position to use the tag two years in a row. We're not faulting Taylor for taking less now than he might have gotten later. He has traded in the 2006 injury risk for a big-money deal. But, just as we said last week regarding Parker, we don't want to hear Taylor or his agent crying about how he has "outperformed" his contract if, as the cap continues to climb into 2008, 2009, or 2010 guys of equal or lesser talent are making a lot more money than Taylor. Taylor has signed his name to a deal that arguably is more fair to the team than it is to the player, and Taylor needs to be prepared to honor it. Meanwhile, it remains to be seen whether other Steelers will follow suit in the future. Polamalu could blow out the market for safeties, if he chooses to do so. And in 2010, Ben Roethlisberger will be in line to hit the market, in his prime. For both players, use of the franchise tag is a no-brainer. But in order to keep these guys over the long haul, the Steelers likely will need them to be willing to take less than they might have seen elsewhere. Just like Parker and Taylor have done.