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: ILB Vince Williams
Stock Value: Up
We have not highlighted Vince Williams in this column since before the draft—in fact, we haven’t talked about him in a couple of months—so it’s time to call attention to him again, and this time there’s a nice reason to talk about him, in ways that have nothing to do with football.
As I wrote about recently, Williams is looking for ways to give back. He sent out the word to media members that he wants to help support small businesses that have lost property or had their places damaged or destroyed amid the protests and riots over the past week.
Going into his eighth season, the man has been around the block, and while he never broke the bank, he’s made some money. He obviously feels like he’s in a position to use his financial good fortunes to give back while others find themselves in a time of need. I think that’s a story worth amplifying more than once, so here it is again. He’s asked people to send him GoFundMe pages for businesses in need of help. If you know of one, send a link his way.
When it comes to football matters, things have broken well for him. Obviously the release of Mark Barron was big in terms of him getting back on the field on defense for a significant amount of time. The team also bypassed the inside linebacker position during the draft as well, so there is really no imminent threat on the horizon, either.
They did draft a player they called ‘half a linebacker and half a safety’ in Antoine Brooks, but he has to first make the team, and then prove that he deserves to be on the field on defense, before anybody should be worrying about him eating into Williams’ snaps. Second-year linebacker Ulysees Gilbert III might, but that’s something we’ve known could be a possibility for a while.