Now that the 2018 NFL Draft is in the books, and the roster heading into the offseason is close to finalized—though always fluid—it’s time to take stock of where the Pittsburgh Steelers stand. Specifically where Steelers players stand individually based on what we have seen happen over the course of the past few months.
A stock evaluation can take a couple of different approaches and I’ll try to make clear my reasonings. In some cases it will be based on more long-term trends, such as an accumulation of offseason activity. In other instances it will be a direct response to something that just happened. So we can see a player more than once over the course of the summer as we head toward training camp.
Player: Joshua Dobbs
Stock Value: Even
Evaluation Type: Minor, Moderate-Term
Reason: Performance, Competition
Let’s preface this by pointing out that this is not an overview of the entire offseason for Joshua Dobbs. Obviously the fact that the Steelers drafted Mason Rudolph was a gigantic blow for the second-year player and will make it tremendously difficult for him to make the team.
But we’ve already talked about that. This is about what has happened since then. And things have been good and bad for him, so it all works out to something that I would consider an even evaluation of his current stock.
Basically, he feels better and more confident in his own abilities, but at the same time, the Steelers are showing more confidence in Rudolph than they are in him. The rookie has taken a lot of second-team snaps and even got the chance to run a lot of practice during the final day of minicamp heading into the break.
Dobbs said that he doesn’t focus on things like that. He only looks at the opportunities he gets and how he can make the most of them, because that is the only thing that is under his control. He told reporters that he feels like he’s eight steps ahead of things this year from a mental standpoint.
I haven’t really read anything about Landry Jones this offseason, but I’m still going to go out on a limb and suggest that it’s pretty unlikely Dobbs will beat him out on the field. His most realistic hope might be if Jones is traded.
Dobbs will simply have to play at a really high level in order to make the roster, and he might struggle to even get the sort of reps that would allow him to show that. Rudolph, for one, is going to command quite a bit of the snaps during the preseason, and Jones will require time as well if he is to be the backup.