Thankfully, Steelers’ training camp is underway, meaning real football is upon us (hopefully).
As we creep closer and closer to the Sept. 14 opener in New York against the Giants, I move further along in my Ranking the Starters’ series.
Today, I take a crack at ranking the starters No. 21-19. Remember, we’re doing this in intervals of three.
Away we go.
2020 Ranking the Starters’ list to date:
No. 24 – Jordan Berry, P
No. 23 – Chukwuma Okorafor, RT
No. 22 – Terrell Edmunds, S
No. 21 – James Washington, WR
This is in no way, shape or form a diss towards James Washington, who had a pretty strong year last year, all things considered. I think this says more about how deep the Steelers are more than anything.
Washington came through in a big way last year, serving as the Steelers’ big-play threat down the field, tapping into that potential he’s flashed in the preseason. Washington averaged nearly 17 yards a catch last year and scored three times, giving the Steelers a real, legitimate threat as a No. 3 weapon moving forward.
Here’s hoping he takes another significant step forward in 2020.
No. 20 – Vince Williams, LB
For as much as Steelers fans try and run off Vince Williams, he continues to produce at a consistent level year after year.
Williams is one of the best blitzing off-ball linebackers the Steelers have ever had in their history (look it up; he’s in the top 5 all-time in sacks in franchise history for off-ball linebackers), plays the run very well and has really developed into a strong leader for the black and gold.
While he’s still a bit of a liability in coverage, Williams is a strong piece for a Steelers defense looking to replace Mark Barron in 2020.
No. 19 – Chris Boswell, K
Boswell was so, so good in 2019 that it made his disastrous 2018 season look like a downright fluke.
For as good as he was last season though, it’s hard to place too much emphasis on a kicker in this list, considering he doesn’t see the field much and shouldn’t be relied on that heavily if your offense is right.
Make no mistake: I love Boswell and what he brings to the table. I just have a hard time placing him any higher than this right now.
2019 Ranking the Starters 21-19:
No. 21 – Terrell Edmunds, S
No. 20 – Steven Nelson, CB
No. 19 – Matt Feiler, RT