The Steelers are at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex, informally known as the South Side facility, now into the regular season. It’s where they otherwise train all year round, and the facility that Burt Lauten insists everybody refers to by its full name.
There are still unsettled questions that need answering, even deep into the regular season. They entered the process with questions in the starting lineup, in scheme, and elsewhere, but new problems always arise that need to be resolved.
Even questions about who’s starting and when may not have satisfactory answers in their finality, as midseason changes are certainly quite possible, for some positions more than others. We’re also feeling out how the new coordinator posts—or posts in new contexts—end up playing out.
There’s never any shortage of questions when it comes to football, and we’ll be discussing them here on a daily basis for the community to “talk amongst yourselves”, as Linda Richman might say on Coffee Talk.
Question: How open are the Steelers to the possibility of trading Mitch Trubisky now that Kenny Pickett is presumably the starter?
Although head coach Mike Tomlin has not formally announced it yet (presumably he will today), it has been widely taken as a given, and even reported, that the Steelers are moving forward with rookie Kenny Pickett as their starting quarterback.
Consequently, that means that Mitch Trubisky is no longer their starting quarterback. But do they need him to be the backup, when they have Mason Rudolph, a player whom they ostensibly felt “comfortable” with as possibly being the starter entering the offseason?
How much of a benefit is there to Trubisky being the backup over Rudolph, relative to the possible trade compensation involved? And here’s the kicker—Trubisky isn’t making much this season. He has a minimum salary because the rest was a signing bonus. He’s making $8 million in base salary next year, and either the Steelers or whoever trades for him can cut him before then. But the point is, his minimum salary makes it easier to trade for him, and possibly raises his value, since the acquiring team doesn’t have to pay his bonus.
But here’s the question: would the Steelers have any interest in trading him if they were offered, say, a fourth- or fifth-round pick for him? We all know their seemingly hardline stance about the importance of carrying three quarterbacks on the roster, and right now they don’t have a third option.
Chris Oladokun is hanging out there on the Kansas City Chiefs’ practice squad, and the Steelers could sign him to their 53-man roster from there if they wanted to—and if Oladokun wanted to. He would at least be a player who would come in with some familiarity with the offense they’re running. Hell, give Devlin Hodges a call and see if he’s in football shape or duck hunting shape.
What does a ‘rebuilding’ year mean?