Why the Steelers should draft a quarterback in 2021

Ben Roethlisberger #7 of the Pittsburgh Steelers (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
Ben Roethlisberger #7 of the Pittsburgh Steelers (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images) /
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Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback Mac Jones. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports /

Quarterback #3

Mac Jones, quarterback of Alabama, would be an interesting choice. Many mock drafts do not have him going in the first round, so he might be a late first-round choice or a second-round steal. Although some think his stock could go up by the draft. What’s interesting some compare him to Joe Burrows, Cincinnati’s number one choice in 2020. Also, some have compared his mechanics to Kirk Cousins. In Jones’ case, that’s both good and bad.

Let’s look at his stats. He is 6’3” and 214. He has 4739 yards on 295 attempts. Not as much compared to Trask but his yards per attempt is a whopping 11.6, much higher than Trask. He also has 42 touchdowns. He is more of a pocket passer than a mobile threat; he only has 41 attempts for 25 yards. However, he may not need to rush.

One of the impressive qualities of Jones is his accuracy. Only 10.4% of his passes were deemed uncatchable. He has the lowest rate of any quarterback with a hundred or more attempts. Essentially he can drop the ball on a dime. His 2020 pass percentage is 71.4%. It would be interesting seeing him throw to Claypool, Smith-Schuster, or Johnson with that type of accuracy.  Some think of all the quarterbacks in the 2021 draft, he is the most well rounded and has the best shot of succeeding in the NFL.

His weak points, arm strength is one; however, he makes up for it with his accuracy. Then his mechanics have a bit to be desired if he sets then throws, he can zing the ball. Get him off rhythm force him to throw while not set or off-balance; his passes are more erratic. In some ways, a little bit like Tom Brady, who, when pressured, has shown he can not pass as well.

The interesting upshot here is if the Steelers maintain a decent offensive line, cut down on the sacks, as they have in 2020, he could make some spectacular plays. Boil it down Jones may be a poor athlete with a great arm. One case in point is the Alabama Kentucky game. Alabama won 63-3; however, Jones only went 16 of 24 with two touchdowns and an interception.  Of course, Ben Roethlisberger has won any number of games with stats like that. Given the right NFL team, Jones could still excel.