The Pittsburgh Steelers’ 2021 season is over, already eliminated from the postseason after suffering a 42-21 loss at the hands of Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs. They just barely made the postseason with a 9-7-1 record and a little help from their friends.
This is an offseason of major change, with the retirement of Ben Roethlisberger, the possible retirement of general manager Kevin Colbert, and the decisions about the futures of many important players to be made, such as Joe Haden, Stephon Tuitt, JuJu Smith-Schuster, and others.
Aside from exploring their options at the quarterback position, the top global priority, once again, figures to be addressing the offensive line, which they did not do quite adequately enough a year ago. Dan Moore Jr. looks like he may have a future as a full-time starter, but Kendrick Green was clearly not ready. Chukwuma Okorafor is heading into free agency, as is Trai Turner.
These are the sorts of topics among many others that we have been exploring on a daily basis and will continue to do so. Football has become a year-round pastime and there is always a question to be asked. There is rarely a concrete answer, but this is your venue for exploring the topics we present through all their uncertainty.
Question: Will the Steelers fall in love with any of this year’s quarterback prospects?
If there is one thing that there hasn’t been a shortage of this offseason, it has been mock drafts connecting quarterbacks to the Pittsburgh Steelers—even if that is the Steelers trading out of the first round to acquire an established veteran starter like Derek Carr.
While it’s certainly well, well, well within the realm of possibility that the Steelers would like to draft a quarterback in the first round, there are two questions that follow: Who might be available to them at 20 that they would be willing to draft there, and are there any quarterbacks they like so much that they would trade up to get them?
The quarterbacks most commonly connected to the team are Pitt’s Kenny Pickett and Malik Willis out of Liberty. But there are plenty of others, most of whom at some time or another have been included in mock drafts going to the Steelers, like Sam Howell, Matt Corral, and Desmond Ridder.
Ben Roethlisberger just retired and isn’t coming back—and shouldn’t. Nobody in the organization has given any indication that they think Mason Rudolph should be starting in 2023. Adding a player like Marcus Mariota in unrestricted free agency is also a temporary solution, even in their eyes.
And so the question is, do they love any of these guys enough to take a shot at one of them being their next franchise guy, even if they have to make a bold move to get them? Does Kevin Colbert stepping down from the GM chair increase the likelihood of their wanting to do that?
He himself has said that he would guard and advise against any panic impulses to make a trade up to grab a quarterback, but if it’s a guy you truly believe in and have properly scouted, is it really much of a panic? If he is who you think he is, nearly any price would be worth it.