Now that the 2020 offseason has begun, following a second consecutive season in which they failed to even reach the playoffs, 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 season, and with notice to anything that happens going forward.
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 move forward.
Player: S Marcus Allen
Stock Value: Up
At least for the time being, no news is good news for Marcus Allen, whose position so far to date has gone almost entirely unaddressed since the start of the new league year. The 2018 fifth-round draft pick went from the 53-man roster as a healthy scratch as a rookie to spending the vast majority of his sophomore season on the practice squad, losing out on an accrued season.
With the Steelers doing little to address the position other than to re-sign Jordan Dangerfield (also allowing Sean Davis to leave via free agency), however, at least for the time being he looks to stand a good chance of returning to the 53-man roster on a full-time basis in 2020.
Of course, it’s entirely possible, if not likely, that the team will address the safety position at some point during the 2020 NFL Draft. It might not come early on because they do have two starters in which they are comfortable in Minkah Fitzpatrick and Terrell Edmunds, but it is one of the thinner areas on the team.
Allen is a Penn State product that the Steelers were high on coming out of college. When he was available in the fifth round, they pounced on him after holding no picks in the fourth round, this despite the fact that they had already signed two safeties in free agency and used their first-round pick on Edmunds, while still having Davis and Dangerfield.
Even though he spent most of his rookie year on the bench, the team was optimistic about his future. In the early portions of the offseason in 2019, head coach Mike Tomlin even mentioned Allen by name when discussing the potential for internal growth on the roster, naming him as a player who could develop into a dimebacker role, which did not happen.
Of course, there’s always the possibility that that growth could happen this year. But if the team uses a relatively high pick on a safety, he may not even be given much of a chance to show it.