4 reasons why B.J. Finney will be Steelers starting center
By Andrew Falce
While it may not be ideal, the Steelers may be forced to rely more on Finney as a starter in 2021.
The Steelers made the unsurprising decision to bring back former interior option B.J. Finney after the Bengals released him. It was unsurprising, as Finney played with the team for the first five years of his career. There was interest in bringing him back last season, but ultimately, he made more money elsewhere.
With the retirement of Maurkice Pouncey though, the team is suddenly missing a center. While he may not be the best choice, here are the four reasons the Steelers will be starting Finney at center this season.
Other roster options
Simply put, the Steelers have very few options on the roster currently able to play center. Besides the aforementioned Finney, the team’s only other true center is J.C. Hassenauer. While Hassenauer should be commended for the job he did when stepping in as the next man up at the position, he isn’t a player you want starting multiple games. He is fine as a backup, but his lack of size and strength limits his upside long-term.
That leaves the Steelers with Aviante Collins and the recently signed Rashaad Coward as even possibilities due to their interior play. While both players have some positive traits and Coward has started some games, both seem like more natural guards. That means they would have to learn center this offseason. That is quite the expectation. More than likely, both of these guys will be fighting to make the roster, not fighting for the starting center role. That leaves Finney as the only in-house option right now.