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: Which quarterbacks in this draft class would you draft 20th overall?
So, this is, I think, the ultimate distillation of the biggest question surrounding the Steelers for the upcoming draft. We know (at least, we think), that the team wants to draft a quarterback. We don’t know how willing they would be to aggressively move up for any of them.
If they didn’t have to move, and just sat at their 20th overall pick and had their choice of all available quarterbacks, which of them would be worth that selection relative to what else might be available at that time?
Opinions among fans vary a good bit when it comes to this draft class. There are some who actually like a few of them and see franchise potential in them. Others simply believe the Steelers should completely bypass the position this year and wait until next year.
I think there has developed a loose consensus around Malik Willis being the quarterback with the most upside in this class, and perhaps even the one who is most likely to be drafted first. I would imagine that the most popular answer to this question will be found right here.
And that’s not to say that there isn’t some polarity out there on Willis. In fact, he might invite the most extreme responses. But I still think he’ll be the most popular answer. I would imagine that Kenny Pickett and Sam Howell would follow. Still, I’m interested in seeing how many people would take any of these quarterbacks over other alternatives if it were their decision. Are any of them at least the 20th-best overall prospect in this class?