The 2023 offseason is going to kick into high gear in relatively short order. We’re going to have the NFL Scouting Combine, along with conversations with pending free agents. Then free agency hits, and there are Pro Days, and then the NFL Draft comes around.
How much do we have to learn about the Pittsburgh Steelers during this process? Not about what the roster is going to look like—but how organizational values may have shifted in light of Kevin Colbert’s departure as general manager.
We know longtime front office executive Omar Khan is now in that role, but they also have assistant general manager Andy Weidl, who is coming from the outside even if he has a lot of familiarity with Pittsburgh.
He spent a decade in Baltimore, however, honing his craft alongside and under Eric DeCosta, now the Ravens’ general manager, and he wasn’t happy to see Weidl land in Pittsburgh. At least not professionally. “We’re very, very proud of Andy”, he told Mike DeFabo for The Athletic.
“My goal would be that he gets out of there sooner than later and he gets the chance to be a GM”, he added. Weidl was actually one of the finalists for the Steelers’ general manager job, interviewing twice, before Khan was named to the title. “We’re all going to help him as much as we can just to get him out of the division”.
How magnanimous of him, surely, to help promote an executive from a rival organization. It’s a compliment, of course, a testament to DeCosta’s belief in Weidl’s ability, that he doesn’t want to see him using those to the advantage of a divisional rival.
The Steelers did not make changes to their front office until after the 2022 NFL Draft, so this will be the first time that we really get a truer understanding of what might have changed in the transition from Colbert to Khan and Weidl.
That may include sharing different opinions about what players are worth. Does this front office believe in paying inside linebacker Myles Jack or backup quarterback Mitch Trubisky $8 million for their services this upcoming season? If not, they could be salary cap cuts.
Now, the Steelers didn’t choose them because they represented a radical departure from their well-established models of doing business. We shouldn’t be expecting dramatic changes in what we’ve come to associate with a typical Pittsburgh offseason.
But that doesn’t mean there won’t be nuances to pick up, slightly different priorities based on position, both individually and collectively. Where do they feel they can upgrade the most in free agency, for example? We’ll finally start getting answers in the next few weeks.