Rashard Mendenhall Cardinals

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Mendenhall was drafted 23rd overall by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 2008 NFL Draft. Prior to his rookie season Mendenhall was ranked by ESPN as the 30th best running back in the league. On July 25, 2008, Mendenhall agreed to a five-year contract worth US$12. 55 million with the Steelers, of which $7. 125 million is guaranteed. He was expected to be a complement to Pro-Bowl running back Willie Parker, in addition to returning kicks. Mendenhall fumbled twice in Pittsburgh's third pre-season game against Minnesota; they were attributed to adjusting to the faster pace of the NFL. Days after the game, teammate Hines Ward placed a ball in Mendenhall's locker with a note stating, "Take Mendenhall's ball away and get $100 from him. " Mendenhall was required to carry the ball everywhere he went until the team's next game. Mendenhall fumbled once more in the Steelers final pre-season game, but worked with running backs coach Kirby Wilson to fix the problem.