The Pittsburgh Steelers are back in the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex earlier than they had anticipated, having been ousted from the postseason in the opening round, which unfortunately marks a slight improvement from the past two seasons, during which they did not even qualify for the playoffs altogether. They have now done four seasons without securing a victory beyond regular season play.
Yet again, they find themselves undergoing the exit meeting process earlier than anticipated, which means so are we.
They did manage to go 12-4 during the regular season, and secured their first AFC North title since 2017, posting a new franchise record by opening the season with 11 consecutive wins, but of course it all fell apart after that. Their only victory after that required a 17-point comeback.
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 2020 season.
Player: QB Joshua Dobbs
Experience: 4 Years
Nobody expects the Spanish inquisition, and they didn’t expect to see Joshua Dobbs back, either, but there he was, on the sidelines, always standing next to Ben Roethlisberger when the defense was on the field and chatting up Matt Canada and Randy Fitchner and Mason Rudolph.
Originally selected by the Steelers in the fourth round of the 2017 NFL Draft, Dobbs was their third-string quarterback as a rookie before winning the backup job a year later. After he lost the job to Rudolph in 2019, and they found Devlin Hodges as a rookie college free agent, he became more expendable, so when the Jacksonville Jaguars offered them a fifth-round pick for him in week two, they pulled the trigger on the trade.
And so he spent the 2019 season in Jacksonville, but he failed to make the roster this past season. With Hodges having beaten out Paxton Lynch for the number three job, the Steelers were open to other options. With Dobbs suddenly available again, they signed him to be the number three, and moved Hodges to the practice squad after he cleared waivers.
And then he would do as I described above for all but one game. The only time he dressed was for the regular season finale against the Cleveland Browns when Roethlisberger and some other starters were being rested, because they didn’t need the game to win the division, and they couldn’t hurt their playoff seeding.
In a move that was somewhat unusual for a Tomlin team, they actually played Dobbs, mixing him in with Rudolph to serve as a sort of read-option runner. He got about half a dozen snaps, handing the ball off the majority of the game, but adding a couple of effective scrambles.
Having signed Dwayne Haskins since the season ended, however, with Jobbs being a pending unrestricted free agent, it’s difficult to see an obvious path for him to come back, unless they simply want him around and to provide a bit of competition, assuming that he can be signed for the bare minimum allowed at his accrued experience.