Since he has arrived on scene, Pittsburgh Steelers safety Mike Mitchell has had but one goal, and one goal only: to win a championship. Or as many championships as possible, of course. But it starts with one. The 2014 free agent signing has consistently talked down minor personal and team accomplishments when asked, citing the ultimate goal of winning the Super Bowl.
Say what you will about him, and his play on the field, as he has no shortage of detractors, and I am sure they will be vocal in the comments section below, but one cannot deny that his head is in the right place when it comes to the ultimate purpose of why they are out there.
When Mike Prisuta asked him about escaping the annual absolute standard in Pittsburgh of winning it all, Mitchell admitted that “there really isn’t” any getting around it, but added that that is how it ought to be. “Why else would you do it?”, he asked.
“The whole goal is for us to be a world champion. I haven’t been coming in at 6 a.m. for four years consecutively, every day to not win it”, Mitchell told the reporter. “It would be a disappointment to win 13 games and not win a Super Bowl. It would be like, ‘damn, we did all of that for nothing’”.
Since he has been in Pittsburgh, this is the best that the Steelers have ever finished a season, going 13-3—their best record since 2004—and ending up with a bye week—their first since 2010. It has been a long time since they have played at home in the Divisional Round.
Not that Mitchell is impressed. He knows there is still plenty of work to do before he reaches his goal—the team’s goal, the organization’s goal, the city’s goal–, which is to hoist the Lombardi Trophy in honor of Dan Rooney in the first season since his passing.
“It’s always a good thing to know that you’re in the tournament but I’m not excited” he said when asked about getting a pass to the second round. “This is like more of an, ‘okay, got the first part done’; it’s more of a relief-type thing. And now it’s the more serious job of, we know we gotta win three, which is hopefully easier than winning four”.
It’s been a while since the Steelers last won three postseason games in one go. That will take you at least to the Super Bowl, if not win it. Pittsburgh had a bye when they got there and lost in 2010. They had a bye and won it all in 2008, the last time they’ve won three postseason games.
But they have been on the right path. They ended a playoff drought in Mitchell’s first season in 2014, going one-and-done. Then they won in the Wildcard Round and lost in the Divisional. Then they won their first two games and advanced to the AFC Championship game. Now they start in the Divisional Round with just two wins separating them from the Super Bowl again.