Q&A: March 15
ROD KEEFER OF EDMOND, OK: You called it – the Steelers will indeed bring another veteran quarterback into the fold (welcome aboard, Mitch Trubisky). On a scale of 0-100 percent, where would you define the likelihood of them picking up another quarterback, given GM Kevin Colbert’s comments about starting camp with four?
ANSWER: As I answer your question, the terms of Mitch Trubisky’s two-year contract are not known, and there are reasons why I think it matters. If the Steelers handed a lot of money to Trubisky, that means they were effectively naming him the starter, and I would see a situation where Trubisky would be brought in and have a full and fair opportunity to determine his role in 2022 – along with Mason Rudolph and Dwayne Haskins – via off-season competition as the best plan. From what I know and have seen of Trubisky’s NFL career to date, he hasn’t reached the merit level of being named a starter with a new team, which puts him essentially on par with Rudolph and Haskins in this respect. Yes, the Steelers will bring four quarterbacks to training camp, but I think having three guys on the depth board with starting NFL experience would prevent them from using a premium draft pick — or any draft pick – on the fourth. Just sign a college free agent for this spot and use that as your camp arm, while the other three guys go head-to-head. Provided the Trubisky contract falls in the team’s favor, the Steelers could go camp with three quarterbacks with NFL regular-season starting experience at an extremely reasonable salary cap total (Rudolph at $4.04 million). dollars, Haskins at $2.54 million, plus whatever is in Trubisky’s contract). Using a premium pick on the position knowing that one of the four will eventually get cut would be a wasteful approach to interim capital allocation.
FLORENCE GOMEZ OF MARIETTA, GA: Should the Steelers consider signing Bobby Wagner to help fix our run defense?
ANSWER: I think that would be a valid consideration, certainly worth a conversation to gauge his interest and get an idea of what he might be looking for in a contract. But there’s a difference between “considering” and “targeting” a 32-year-old future linebacker who played more than 9,500 snaps during his NFL career.
GREG SMITH OF GAINESVILLE, VA: With Bobby Wagner out of the Seahawks, do you think Pittsburgh should target him? With Wagner released and not an unrestricted free agent, how does it work for a team to be able to sign him?
ANSWER: As explained in the answer above, I would support due diligence on Bobby Wagner, but it’s not the same kind of situation the Steelers were in during the 2002 offseason when they signed James Farrior, 27. Wear must be taken into account. Because Wagner has been released, teams are free to begin negotiations with him immediately, and should things progress to the satisfaction of both parties, the signing could take place as soon as negotiations are complete. With the players released, there is no need to wait for the start of the league’s new year on March 16 for the actual signing.
CASEY MCDONALD OF MONTGOMERY, AL: What do you think of the way Alex Highsmith played last season? Personally, I thought he was pretty solid with some really good times.
ANSWER: I would put Alex Highsmith in the good enough category that the Steelers aren’t actively looking for a replacement this offseason, but are still at no risk of being elected to the Pro Bowl. The Steelers need more of him, and Highsmith needs to improve his game so he’s better able to take advantage of the attention opponents need to give TJ Watt. He must be more like the 2008-10 version of LaMarr Woodley, who had 35 sacks to add to the 36.5 James Harrison posted over the same span.
SCOTT ROGERS OF CENTERVILLE, OH: I enjoy reading your Steelers articles by position, for insight and positional information as we go through this roller coaster of an offseason. In the running backs slice, you mentioned the team had plans to some degree for Anthony McFarland, but he tore up his MCL and went to injured reserve. In the same article, you mentioned possibly signing a veteran to complete Najee Harris. Have plans for McFarland been put on the back burner, or is there a pretty good relationship with offensive coordinator Matt Canada (with them having spent time together in Maryland) where Matt is confident in McFarland’s ability to play a greater role in the future?
ANSWER: Individual player “plans” do not necessarily have an expiration date and do not automatically carry over from season to season. It’s much more of a fluid type situation, with the player showing he deserves another chance or wasted the opportunity based on his conditioning, availability and performance on the pitch. And a past “relationship” with an assistant manager during a previous stop in their respective careers would have little impact on how such a scenario would play out. A player’s roles are the decision of the head coach.
MARY COLUSSY OF PATTON, PA: What’s the order of draft picks for the Steelers after No. 20 overall in the first round of this year’s draft? I can’t find any article on this issue anywhere.
ANSWER: The full draft order through seven rounds of the 2022 NFL Draft will not be determined until after the NFL awards compensatory picks, which typically occurs at the end of March.
JOSEPH CASSA OF LANSDALE, PA: My memory is a little hazy at times, but I don’t remember the Steelers admitting the coming year was a rebuilding year. With so many positions needing help, do you think they would view 2022 as a year of rebuilding? And you?
ANSWER: The Steelers will never proclaim a season or seasons as “rebuilding”, as they view such a declaration as a form of surrender. During a long chat with Dan Rooney, the subject of a local pro team came up when that team’s management said the goal for the year was to move to .500 as part of the next phase. of development. Rooney said setting such a goal was like providing an excuse for the team because if the team were above .500 two-thirds of the way through the season, they could relax and ride knowing they were still going to hit. the goal”. “His belief was that you play to win every game every season and then at the end of a particular season you do a more in-depth performance assessment to determine if any changes need to be made in the future.
KEITH CARTER OF JACKSONVILLE, FL: Jordan Davis of Georgia is an elite runner. Do you think his impact as a two-try player is enough to be considered for this year’s first-round pick?
ANSWER: I don’t watch video or study these players so I’m not going to do what so many others in this business do and pretend to be a scout but my current concern about Jordan Davis is that too many people could end up being seduced by his Combine performance and give him more weight in their evaluation than the way he played for the national champion Bulldogs. As you mentioned, I believe Davis can be an elite rusher in the NFL, but if he can’t contribute anything to his future team’s pass rush, then I don’t know if he would worthy of being the 20th overall pick in the upcoming draft.
MIKE FOSTER OF EWA BEACH, HI: If I’m not mistaken, you were skeptical about taking Jordan Davis in the first round because he was just a two-hitter. Did his Combine performance (4.78 in the 40-yard dash at 6-foot-6 and 340 pounds) change your opinion? Why couldn’t he be trained to rush the passer and become a three-try defensive lineman?
ANSWER: Jordan Davis was a two-tryer in college, and if he had outstanding passing-rushing skills, why didn’t Georgia train him to be a three-try defensive lineman trials?