Now that training camp is over with the Pittsburgh Steelers back in Pittsburgh and gearing up for what they hope will be a much more productive season, it’s time to take stock of where the team stands. Specifically, where Steelers players stand individually based on what we have seen and are seeing over the course of training camp and the preseason and the regular season as it plays out. A stock evaluation can take a couple of different approaches and I’ll try to make clear my reasoning for each one. 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: G Kevin Dotson
Stock Value: Up
Reasoning: The veteran offensive lineman was in a position battle for the left guard job this summer, competing against second-year Kendrick Green, last year’s starting center. Outside of the brief period during which he wasn’t working due to injury, there wasn’t really any a point at which Dotson didn’t appear to be ahead.
Kevin Dotson exited his rookie season in 2020 with plenty of momentum behind him. He successfully cameoed in four starting appearances as an injury fill-in, and with the widespread departures across the offensive line, was fated to be a starter entering year two. Well, he was, but it didn’t exactly go as planned.
It was because of that fact that Dotson was pitted against Kendrick Green for his left guard job this year. Well, that can the fact that the Steelers signed two new starters at center and right guard, leaving only the left guard job open for which Green could compete.
Now, the question is, how has he looked? Well, there hasn’t been an awful lot good to say about the offensive line in general thus far, but as with most, he did grow more comfortable over the course of the preseason.
More importantly, for now, he was clearly the better of the two between himself and Green, with the latter actually starting the first two preseason games (the first of which Dotson missed due to injury). But when the time came to put out the first official depth chart of the regular season, you know which name was in the starting lineup.
Today, he gets the chance to begin to prove that he deserves that starting job. He started nine games last year before succumbing to a severe ankle injury that landed him on the Reserve/Injured List for the rest of the season. Who is he entering year three? How close is he to the guy everybody seemed to have hope for coming out of 2020?