The journey toward the 2017 season is now in full swing with the Pittsburgh Steelers having reported to Latrobe for their annual training camp at Saint Vincent College, where they have held their camps for over half a century now.
This is surely the time more than any other in which we find ourselves full of questions that we are looking to get answered, and this also tends to be the best time to get answers to those questions that have been building up over the course of time since the 2016 season ended.
You can rest assured that we have the questions, and we will be monitoring the developments in the training camp and the preseason 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 are the odds that the Steelers would trust Joshua Dobbs in a game this season?
This is a question that I have been pondering on and off frankly since the Steelers used their fourth-round pick on quarterback Joshua Dobbs. If at some point this season the team found themselves down to their third quarterback, would they trust him to start a game?
I want to put this into context by talking about Landry Jones, whom the Steelers also drafted in the fourth round, back in 2013. Entering his third season in 2015, the team was not confident in his advancement. When Bruce Gradkowski was injured in the preseason, they did not turn to him to be their backup.
Instead, they signed Mike Vick and immediately installed him into the role of backup, and it turned out that they needed it. Despite the fact that he played quite poorly through two games and even battled injuries in the third game, it was only until his injury forced him to leave the game that they were willing to put in Jones.
But since they did so, he has held on to the backup quarterback position. Now, the Steelers obviously drafted Dobbs because they have ambitions of him becoming a better option than Jones, but one should not expect that transfer of power to occur during his rookie year.
Yet if the situation should arise, as it has in years past—more than two times—that the team would have to start a game with its third quarterback, would the Steelers trust Dobbs with the opportunity to start, or would they have a veteran on the rolodex to call up? This of course assumes that the veteran would have some semblance of time to prepare.
Alex Kozora has already spoken highly of the advancements that the rookie has made so far in his first training camp, but he still has a long way to go in his development. Will that development include the trust of meaningful playing time, should the situation arise?