Despite starting three different quarterbacks during the 2023 season, the Pittsburgh Steelers managed to win 10 games and reach the playoffs. While the goal next season will be to return to the playoffs, the Steelers likely don’t want to have to use multiple quarterbacks to do so.
As it stands heading into the NFL offseason, the Steelers’ starting QB job is still Kenny Pickett‘s to lose. That could change by training camp though as Pittsburgh is planning on adding another quarterback to the mix, per Adam Schefter.
“We know that Pittsburgh’s going to go out and get some type of quarterback,” Schefter said Monday on the Pat McAfee Show. “Whether that’s Ryan Tannehill, whether that’s Russell Wilson, whether that’s Justin Fields. I know Mike Tomlin’s a big fan of Justin Fields. We’ll keep that in mind during the off-season and the coming weeks.”
The Steelers had stability at the quarterback position for nearly two decades with Ben Roethlisberger under center. Inconsistencies from the trio who’s started games since his retirement – Pickett, Mason Rudolph and Mitch Trubisky – lead Pittsburgh’s thinking in adding a viable starter to the fold.
Who will the Steelers add?
It’s one thing to talk about adding a quarterback, but it’s another to go and do it. The three names that Schefter mentioned are all intriguing in their own right and Steelers fans are probably already dreaming up scenarios to get one of them or another QB not discussed on the roster.
Ryan Tannehill has already been linked to the Steelers before Monday. New Steelers offensive coordinator Arthur Smith was Tannehill’s coordinator for two seasons with the Tennessee Titans in 2019 and 2020. The duo thrived together as Tannehill led the NFL in passer rating in 2019 and tossed a career-high 33 touchdown passes in 2020.
Russell Wilson gives the Steelers a different veteran presence, but how much is Pittsburgh willing to give up to trade for an aging QB on a massive contract whose best years are behind him?
Justin Fields is the most interesting candidate of the three and is probably the one that Steelers fans want the most. There’s no guarantee that his days with the Chicago Bears are over yet though as they mull their options with the No. 1 pick in the draft and the Steelers would have to cough up more for him than they would for Wilson.
The Steelers have the talent to make a playoff run next season. They also have one of the best leaders in the league, head coach Mike Tomlin. A quarterback may not be all they need to become contenders, but figuring out their QB of the future is paramount to their success over the next few seasons.