I really don't think it it ridiculous that Hartline would be asking for $5-6M.
If you look at the top free agent receivers from last year and what they signed for you will see his agent is right in line with the previous trends
Here is the list of top free agents receivers from last year and what they signed for. (minus Mike Wallace, tagged)
Vincent Jackson-5 yrs, $55.5M, $26M guaranteed
Reggie Wayne- 3 yrs, $17.5M, $7.5M guaranteed
Marques Colston- 5 yrs, $36.3M, $17.7 guaranteed
Brandon Lloyd- 3 yrs, $12M, $3M guaranteed
Robert Meachem- 4 yrs, $25.9M, $14M guaranteed
Mario Manningham- 2 yrs, $7.375M, $3.2M guaranteed
Laurent Robinson- 5 yrs, $32.5M, $13.8M guaranteed.
Top Contract -$11.1M per year
Bottom Contract-$3.7M per year
Average contract of top 7 2012 free agents receivers- 3.8yrs, $26.7M, $12.2M guaranteed, Average $6.9M per year.
Hartline out perfromed 2 or 3 on that list with his past season
Now if we look at the top free agents receivers for 2013 Hartline is in that top seven
Now maybe he ends up being the 6th or 7th best and has to settle for contracts like Manningham or Lloyd at $4M per year.
But nothing wrong with trying. This could be Hartline's only big payday of his career.
Not cheap to sign a top free agent receiver as we all know with Brandon Marshall signing and it doesn't always work out. (see manningham and Robinson from last year)
So does anyone really think we are going to sign 2 of the top 7 free agents receivers? (Jennings/hartline) (Jennings/wallace) (Wallace/Hartline)
I doubt it very much. You have to be able to find some playmaking receivers in the draft to be successful and keep your payroll in check.
I assume we sign one and then draft some more recievers.