I have over the course of the past several seasons turned to a series of articles around this time of year in which I looked to explore the issues and questions facing the Pittsburgh Steelers during the upcoming season and trying to identify the range of possibilities in which any given scenario can end.
I started out with a dual series called The Optimist’s/Pessimist’s Take and switched last season to the Devil’s Advocate series. In an attempt to find a more streamlined solution with a title more suited to the actual endeavor, we are introducing a simple Buy Or Sell segment exploring whether the position statement is likely to be worth investing in as an idea.
The range of topics will be wide, from the specific to the general, exploring broad long-term possibilities to the immediate future of particular players. I will make an argument for why a concept should be bought into as well as one that can be sold, and you can share your thoughts on which is the more compelling case while offering your own.
Topic Statement: More than one quarterback will go to an AFC North team in the first round.
This is a tough one, because every in the division other than the Cincinnati Bengals has been heavily linked to the possibility of drafting a quarterback early in the draft. The Cleveland Browns are assured to take a quarterback, and possibly even two. The Baltimore Ravens have hinted at the possibility as well, and the Steelers’ interest in Mason Rudolph is clear.
And the truth is that you can’t really rule out the Bengals either. They’re drafting high enough where if a quarterback falls they could make the decision to pull the trigger. Cincinnati has missed the playoffs the past two years with Andy Dalton and never won a playoff game with him either.
The Ravens has done their due diligence on Lamar Jackson, a player who reminds of another quarterback they drafted in Tyrod Taylor. Frustration with Joe Flacco is growing, and he is coming off of a back injury.
Pittsburgh could definitely draft Rudolph if he falls that far and we’ve discussed why ample times. Add all of it up and odds are pretty reasonable that more than one quarterback makes it to the AFC North.
Still, the idea of taking two quarterbacks in the first round is pretty far-fetched even for Cleveland, and frankly the Browns have been far more likely to wait on the quarterback than to double down. The Steelers and Ravens have bigger needs than quarterback for their immediate future, and the same thing could be said for Cincinnati as well.
It would have to take the right quarterback falling to the right team, I think, in order to see two quarterbacks in the division from the first round. It’s possible, but so many other teams will also be looking at these quarterbacks as well, and I don’t think any of the AFC North teams would make a move up to grab one because they all have a guy, or will with the first-overall pick.