As a longtime Pittsburgh Steelers fan, I can appreciate all the work that our previous quarterback did for the past 18 years. But now that he’s (finally) retired, the Steelers have a problem.
Who’s going to be the best fit to take snaps for the 2022-23 season?
And I’m writing this now, not knowing the future or what the Steelers’ plans might be. But still …
There’s a lot of options.
Such as –
Keep Mason Rudolph and elevate him to QB1. I dunno. Mason Rudolph’s had four years to show his worth as a quality quarterback. But his game has been hit and miss. He’ll have great moments and then he’ll play like a kid who just discovered how to use a controller in Madden. And when you consider his most memorable moment in the sport was having his helmet ripped off by Myles Garrett… all I’m saying is, if Mason Rudolph becomes QB1, then we’re going to struggle to make the playoffs.
Pick up a journeyman quarterback for a year or two. That might mean Teddy Bridgewater or Jameis Winston or Carson Wentz or Gardner Minshew or Mitchell Trubisky. And none of those guys have the stability or the durability needed for a starting QB position, especially in a physical game that the Steelers possess.
Go big and sign Russell Wilson or Jimmy Garappolo. Again, I’m not seeing it. The Steelers don’t mortgage their future to go all-or-nothing for the present. Not unless they feel that Garappolo or Wilson is the missing piece that can take them all the way to the Super Bowl.
Sign Aaron Rodgers. No, no, NO NO NO FUCKING WAY NO. I do not need this anti-vaxx MAGA chud in black and gold. I don’t need this head case who thinks he’s better than he really is under center. I mean, what’s he going to do when he doesn’t get his way? Threaten to quit the team and be the new host of a revival of The $64,000 Question? No. If it’s a choice between this goofnut and the previous guy, I’ll hope for a complete NFL shutdown for the year.
Sign Colin Kaepernick. It’s been too long, man. Call him up and offer him whatever he wants. The guy still works out like a fiend, hoping for that next opportunity. Why not roll the dice and make it happen? Right. The day the NFL actually hires Colin Kaepernick as a starting quarterback will be the day the sun rises in the west.
Snag Kenny Pickett or Malik Willis in the draft. This is the most attractive option, and one that can pay the most dividends. But the problem is, Pittsburgh has the #20 pick in the draft. There are two teams with quarterback needs that must draft ahead of Pittsburgh – Atlanta and Washington. So there’s no guarantee that either man will still be on the draft board by the time Pittsburgh picks. Unless they trade away draft picks or players to rise up in the draft and snag Willis or Pickett.
I get it. This is really the first time in nearly two decades that I’ve been worried that the Steelers might actually finish the season with a sub-.500 record. Which has never happened under head coach Mike Tomlin’s career.
So I’m hoping that whatever decision the Steelers make …
It’ll be not only the right one for the team …
But also the right one for my fandom.