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: Paxton Lynch
Experience: 3 Years
By accrued seasons, Paxton Lynch should be heading into his fourth NFL seasons. However, because he did not dress for enough games last year, or in any of his years, he would remain eligible for the practice squad.
That is an important thing to note this year, I believe, because of the substantially increased possibility that the Steelers will buck the trend of choosing not to carry quarterbacks on their practice squad, while at the same time breaking virtually new ground by carrying four quarterbacks in total.
Last season, Lynch was the Steelers’ number three quarterback, initially on the practice squad, coming only after Ben Roethlisberger was lost for the season, placed on injured reserve. He was shortly after promoted to the 53-man roster, but as far as my recollection allows, he would only dress for the season finale after Mason Rudolph had also been placed on injured reserve (yet for some reason no site seems to register this).
A former first-round pick by the Denver Broncos in 2016, it goes without saying that he has fallen far short of his pedigree. It initially looked as though the Seattle Seahawks might keep him in 2019, but he was released shortly before the season started. He was not on a 53-man roster in 2018 after the Broncos let him go.
Still, Lynch will have the opportunity to compete, one would imagine, with Devlin Hodges to serve as the Steelers’ third quarterback. owner Art Rooney II has already said that they have no interest in signing a veteran free agent and that, essentially, they will go into training camp with the quarterbacks already on the roster.
With Lynch having come in during the regular season, he didn’t have the downtime to prepare for the Steelers’ system, though there were some compliments reserved for his growth. Now he will have a full offseason to get ready for his chance to compete and rebuild his profile in the NFL. Otherwise he may be playing in the XFL in 2021.