Steelers restricted free agent wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders signed an offer sheet from the Patriots worth $2.5 million on Wednesday. The Steelers have until Sunday to match the offer or settle for a third-round pick from the Patriots, according to Adam Schefter
Sanders was the Steelers' third-round pick out of Southern Methodist in the 2010 NFL Draft and over the last three seasons has caught 94 passes for 1,290 yards and five touchdowns. His best season was in 2012 when Sanders had 626 yards receiving and a touchdown.
Despite the fact the Patriots had the top-ranked offense in 2012, they could use some help at the wide receiver position. They lost Wes Welker, their leading receiver, in free agency and even though they signed Danny Amendola to replace him they don't have any reliable outside receiving threats. While this hasn't been a problem in the past, since teams haven't been able to figure out how to cover both Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez, the offense would be even more potent if they get Sanders.
The Steelers could also be hurting for wide receivers. They lost their top offensive threat in Mike Wallace in free agency and losing Sanders would leave them with Antonio Brown, Plaxico Burress and an aging Jerricho Cotchery.