The Pittsburgh Steelers have a major set challenges facing them for the offseason of 2019 after they managed to miss the postseason for the first time in five years. The failure has been taken especially grievously because of the fact that the team was in position to control their own fate even for homefield advantage with six games remaining before dropping four games.
And so they find themselves getting the exit meeting process underway at least two weeks earlier than they have had to in years, since they have made it to at least the Divisional Round since 2015. Hopefully they used those extra two weeks with purpose.
While we might not know all the details about what goes on between Head Coach Mike Tomlin and his players during these exit meetings, we do know how we would conduct those meetings if they were let up to us. So here are the Depot’s exit meetings for the Steelers’ roster following the 2018 season.
Player: Stevan Ridley
Position: Running Back
Experience: 6 Years
Stevan Ridley is a running back with legitimate, tangible success at the NFL level in his past. So when he came in at the end of the 2017 season for a brief cameo and played well, it was a virtual no-brainer for the Steelers to re-sign him in 2018 for a low-value contract and give him an opportunity to compete.
It’s fair to wonder in hindsight if he would have even made the roster if Le’Veon Bell were here, however, as they also had James Conner and drafted Jaylen Samuels. Albeit a fifth-round pick, he was somebody whose skill set the team valued, as has shown over the course of the season as the rookie surpassed Ridley on the depth chart.
In all, Ridley carried the ball just 29 times during the year, gaining a whopping 80 yards. He did score one touchdown. He caught three passes for 18 yards as well. But his season was instead defined by his two fumbles, both of which the team lost.
The first of his fumbles came in the second game against the Cleveland Browns, but which fortunately did not prove to be costly. He did not carry the ball in that game. It instead came on a reception, the last he would have for the year.
In fact, he would only touch the ball in four of the final nine games, one of which only because Conner was being rested on a short week. The other three games were also while Conner was injured. And as is the theme, his last touch was a fumble.
That turned the Steelers’ season, coming against the New Orleans Saints in a critical spot, getting a carry on third and two in Saints territory, which helped new Orleans come back and take the win. It’s unlikely that Ridley will be brought back for a third season in Pittsburgh.