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: Benny Snell
Experience: 2 Years
Benny Snell Football was something less than remarkable in 2020. The second-year running back had the second-lowest yards per carry figure in the NFL among qualified players, just 3.3 yards per rush on 111 attempts, gaining only 354 yards, with four touchdowns. Only Joshua Kelly, a rookie with the Los Angeles Chargers, did worse, putting up 3.2 yards per carry on 111 attempts.
Both of them also fumbled two times, which is certainly not ideal.
This was in spite of the fact that he had arguably the best game of his young career in the season opener. After James Conner got nicked early in the game, eventually leaving with an ankle issue that would not cause him to miss further time, Snell stepped in for his first and so far only 100 yard game, putting up 113 on just 19 attempts and helping to close out a win against the New York Giants.
If only things could have stayed anything remotely like that. He only averaged four yards per carry or more in just three more games all season, and only had three total games of 20 or more rushing yards, including an 18-carry, 84-yard effort against the Cincinnati Bengals—in a game that they inexplicably lost.
While some of Snell’s inefficiency can be traced back to some of the work that he got as a short-yardage back, that only accounts for so much of the issue, and the truth is that he was merely average or even worse in converting in those short-yardage attempts.
There was some optimism about Snell coming out of his rookie season, but his encore performance was certainly a disappointment. Now with Conner set to leave in free agency, the Steelers need some type of answer in the backfield, with the draft being an increasingly attractive option.