Ask Alex: Steelers Mailbag

Welcome back to your weekly Pittsburgh Steelers’ mailbag. As always, we’re here for the next hour to answer everything on your mind.

To your questions!

BananasFoster: yes or no- do you think the Steelers make the playoffs next year?

Alex: Ah, you’re boxing me in! Ha, I wish I had a confident answer but this roster should look a lot different next year. So certainly hard to guess and know.

If you’re making me answer though, no. My answer is no. AFC North, AFC at large is just too tough. It’s the land where all the QBs play. Big mountain to climb.

stan: Mitch Trubisky is currently the 13th rated QB in the league by PFF. He’s statistically superior to Pickett in every way. I get that Pickett should be playing and I understand why. What I don’t get is why I keep seeing projections that the Steelers will cut Trubisky next year to save money. He’s a really valuable player at this price and with Pickett apparently a little injury prone and unproven anyway, we’re going to need a quality back-up. If nothing else he’d have trade value. So, why would a team that carried Mason Rudolph all year at $5M cut a far better version of him to save $7M when they’ll have a much greater need? This makes zero sense to me.

Alex: They may keep him. We’ll see how Khan/Weidl approach it. It’s a bit awkward. He was signed to start, before Pickett ever got (back) to Pittsburgh and Trubisky isn’t happy being the backup. He was clearly upset about being benched.

They carried Rudolph for the protection and uncertainty of the QB room this summer. So we’ll see what they do. But Trubisky would be an expensive backup who probably wants to move on and go elsewhere now that he’s been passed up so quickly, sooner than most people – himself included – thought.

WeWantDaTruth: Hi Alex. Looking ahead to the draft, the Steelers have many needs. Many are calling for the Steelers to go CB in round 1. My thought is that if a top OT is available when we pick, we go that route. An improved OL can help keep the D off the field and rested and is more valuable to a team overall than a top CB. Curious as to your thoughts on this?

Alex: Yeah I think trenches is where this team has to start. To build inside/out. It’s been ignored long enough. But it’s really hard to answer those things in a vacuum. You never pick just positions. You pick players. Prospects. So there’s value vs fit vs character vs medical vs everything else you consider when weighing two different players. So many layers to it so while it may make sense to rank positions in terms of importance, it loses its weight once you’re actually getting specific. Do you still take the OT over the CB even though the CB is graded “X” amount higher? That’s where the debate begins. How does the rest of the class look? Another thing to consider.

And then you add in free agency. This team will make moves, sign starters. And that could eliminate or lessen needs. And that comes first. So trying to judge what direction they’ll go this far out is really impossible.

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