The Pittsburgh Steelers ended the 2019 season much as they did the 2018 season, by allowing their playoff fate slip out of their grasp. Slow starts and slow finishes permeated both campaigns, with strong runs in between. But while the results were the same missing the playoffs, the means were quite different.
Yet again, they find themselves undergoing the exit meeting process earlier than anticipated, which means so are we. But that they still managed to go 8-8 without Ben Roethlisberger, and with the general quality of play that they faced along the way, I suppose things could have been worse.
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: Chris Boswell
Experience: 5 Years
Kickers have had worse seasons than the one that Chris Boswell had in 2019, that’s for certain. Boswell knows this as well as anyone. His nearly 30-point improvement in field goal percentage from 2018 to this past season has got to be one of the most significant increases in NFL history among kickers with at least 20 attempts in each season.
Just a year after reaching the Pro Bowl, in 2017 setting franchise records for points scored and field goals made, successfully hitting on 35 of 38 field goal attempts, Boswell bottomed out, connecting on just 13 of 20 attempts. He had only missed 10 field goals in his first three season over 95 attempts, a field goal percentage of 89.5 percent, which at the time was tracking as the greatest in NFL history.
Not only did he miss seven of his 20 field goal attempts, he also missed five extra points. His 12 total misses were the most in the league, if I recall correctly. This past season, however, he tied for the fewest combined misses in the league, making 29 of 31 field goal attempts and all 28 of his extra points.
Of course, the fact that he only attempted 28 extra points is a big part of the Steelers’ story in 2019. It means that they were not scoring touchdowns. He even attempted 27 extra points in 2015, when he was only signed a quarter of the way into the season.
Either way, the point is that Boswell really returned to form in important and impressive fashion this past season. His only two misses consisted of one off a bad hold by Jordan Berry and one from 50-plus yards, which was in the 40-49-yard range. You really can’t ask for much more from your kicker, other than perhaps greater range (his career long is 53 yards).