Now that the 2021 season is over, bringing yet another year of disappointment, a fifth consecutive season with no postseason victories, it’s time to take stock of where the Pittsburgh Steelers stand. Specifically, where Steelers players stand individually based on what we have seen and are seeing over the course of the season and into the offseason as it plays out. We will also be reviewing players based on their previous season and their prospects for the future. A stock evaluation can take a couple of different approaches and I’ll try to make clear my reasoning. In some cases, it will be based on more long-term trends. In other instances, it will be a direct response to something that just happened. Because of this, we can and will see a player more than once over the course of the season as we move forward.
Player: RB Benny Snell
Stock Value: Up
Reasoning: While the Steelers did sign two running backs as college free agents, they did not address the position during the 2022 NFL Draft, which should bode well for veteran Benny Snell, not only to make the roster, but to resume is role as the number two back.
Opinions about the running back position and the need to address it—and how to address it—seemed to vary quite a bit among analysts and Steelers fans. While there aren’t many people who think the Steelers boast an impressive level of depth behind starter Najee Harris, not many were convinced that there was a need to address the position early in the draft.
It was certainly possible that the team would draft a running back at some point, especially in the later rounds, but I don’t think anybody was surprised when they came out of the weekend without investing capital on the position.
While they did sign two running backs as college free agents after the draft, the overall outlook of the position strongly suggests that Benny Snell will be safe for another year as he enters the final season of his rookie contract.
Not only that, he figures to remain the number two back behind Harris, with only Anthony McFarland, who spent most of the past season as either a healthy or injured scratch, as the only other veteran of note on the roster—barring Trey Edmunds, at least.
Now, just because the roster looks one way right now doesn’t mean that won’t change in a month or two. In fact, there’s a pretty good chance that they will, at some point over the summer, sign a veteran running back to add to the mix.