Buy Or Sell: Steelers Would Be Better Served With First-Round WR Over QB

With the 2022 new league year, the questions will be plenty for quite a while, even as the Pittsburgh Steelers spend cash and cap space and use draft picks in an effort to find answers. We don’t know who the quarterback is going to be yet—even if we have a good idea. How will the offensive line be formulated? How will the secondary develop amid changes, including to the coaching staff? What does Teryl Austin bring to the table—and Brian Flores? What will Matt Canada’s offense look like absent Ben Roethlisberger?

These sorts of uncertainties are what I will look to address in our Buy or Sell series. In each installment, I will introduce a topic statement and weigh some of the arguments for either buying it (meaning that you agree with it or expect it to be true) or selling it (meaning you disagree with it or expect it to be false).

Topic Statement: The Steelers would be better served drafting a first-round wide receiver than quarterback.

Explanation: Technically, this topic could probably apply to just about any position in juxtaposition to the quarterback position, because its premise rests on the notion that none of the quarterbacks in this draft class are franchise-caliber. But this year, the Steelers certainly have a genuine need at wide receiver.


Let’s be honest with ourselves. There isn’t a quarterback in this draft class who would take the Steelers to the Super Bowl. Not in 2022, not in 2032. And if your first-round quarterback isn’t going to take you to Super Bowls, then he’s not worth spending a first-round pick on, plain and simple. That’s a done deal. Almost any other position would be more worth addressing.

And the Steelers have a crying need a wide receiver with Diontae Johnson entering the final year of his contract, Chase Claypool at a bit of a crossroads heading into year three, and no significant depth behind them. At least if they draft a wide receiver in the first round, they would control him for five years instead of four.


When you don’t have a quarterback, you don’t have a Super Bowl roster, plain and simple. The Steelers currently do not have a quarterback, or at least one that could lead them to a championship. And when you’re in that position, you have to keep trying, and not be paralyzed by the fear of failure.

And so you take the swings when you can. Like, say, when you have a first-round pick and there are four or five potential first-round quarterbacks. Yes, most first-round quarterbacks don’t actually work out. But some of the ones about whom there was more doubt can work out.

The thing is, if you believe in a guy and believe in your ability to develop him and you surround him with talent, good things can happen. Anybody they draft this year will still have talent around him with Johnson, Claypool, Najee Harris, and Pat Freiermuth.

And this is yet another good draft for wide receivers, which they could easily add in the second, third, or fourth rounds. You’re more likely to land a Pro Bowl wide receiver after the first round than you are a quarterback.

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