Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, but there seems to be a disconnect between how the Pittsburgh Steelers view their immediate future and how a large (or at least vocal) portion of their fans want to see them approach it.
Basically, it comes down to a disagreement over what their championship aspirations look like. The team obviously still believes that they have a team, or can put together a team, that is capable of competing for a Super Bowl title in 2021. Many fans disagree, and instead would rather see them dump some aging veterans and their contracts and start a rebuild. That’s not on Art Rooney II’s mind, as he told reporters yesterday.
“We’ve got to look at the whole roster in the context of this year’s cap and make decisions on it, but I would just say that we’re going to try to build a championship team to go into next year”, he said when asked about the idea of entering a ‘rebuilding’ mode, via Jim Wexell of 247Sports.
“Whether we can do that or not, we’re not going to sit here and say we’re three years away”, Rooney continued. “We’re just not going to look at it that way. We’re going to put the best team on the field that we can next year and do our best to compete, number one, and win that division and move on”.
So there you have it. Anybody who was somehow holding on to some sort of hope that the Steelers would try to tank as much as they can next year and get the best possibly draft capital they can manage, or anything in that vein, is going to be sorely disappointed.
Rather than that, it will be business as usual. The Steelers will be doing the tight rope walk against the cap giving them every tool at their disposal to field as competitive a team as they can manage in 2021, as they do every other year.
One thing you cannot ever fault the Steelers for is not trying. They are always committed to trying to win a championship, and trying to win it every year. Maybe some will argue that that is not the best or most effective strategy, but it’s the one that they believe in.
For 2021, that strategy includes Ben Roethlisberger at quarterback for at least another year, much to the chagrin of a surprising number of fans who do not believe that the Steelers can win a Super Bowl with him under center. But they’ll watch him play all the same.