The 2016 season is unfortunately over, and the Pittsburgh Steelers are now embarking upon their latest offseason journey, heading back to the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex, formerly known and still referred to as the ‘South Side’ facility of Heinz Field. While the postseason is now behind us, there is plenty left to discuss.
And there are plenty of questions left unanswered as well. The offseason is just really the beginning phase of the answer-seeking process, which is lasts all the way through the Super Bowl for teams fortunate enough to reach that far.
You can rest assured that we have the questions, and we will be monitoring the developments in the offseason as they develop, and beyond, looking for the answers as we look to evaluate the makeup of the Steelers as they try to navigate their way back to the Super Bowl, after reaching the AFC Championship game last season for the first time in more than half a decade.
Question: What, if anything, can we read into the Steelers’ first selections for their pre-draft visitors?
Yesterday was the first day during which teams could host prospective draft candidates at their facilities for a pre-draft visit. The Steelers were among the teams to take immediate advantage of the opportunity, and they brought in no fewer than four players: two quarterbacks, and two wide receivers.
On paper, it wouldn’t really seem as though the team has needs at either position. They were returning every single player from both positions who spent any amount of time on the 53-man roster last year, and are even likely to get a wide receiver back. Okay—they did lose one receiver in free agency, but added another, and ultimately have a net gain at the group.
So why is their first day of visits filled with offensive prospects at positions that don’t seem like much of a need? Ben Roethlisberger has talked retirement in recent years, but Josh Dobbs isn’t exactly heir apparent material. Do they think Patrick Mahomes is? Perhaps.
As for the two wide receivers that they brought in, Josh Reynolds and Kenny Golladay, they bear some striking resemblances to one another in certain categories. Both are over 6’2”, although Golladay is more than 20 pounds heavier at almost 220. Their arm lengths and hand size are nearly a match, as were their 40-yard dash times at about 4.5 seconds.
The Steelers already seem to have a bunch of tall wide receivers with 4.5 speed or better, so why are they still looking for more? While Reynolds is considered the better prospect of the two, neither seem to be regarded as top-10 wide receivers in this draft with mid- to mid-late-round projections.