Steelers can hardly boast over recent 2022 NFL power rankings

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph (2). Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph (2). Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

The panel at ESPN recently released their 2022 NFL power rankings, but here’s why the Pittsburgh Steelers don’t have much to boast about. 

The 2021 season recently came to a close as the Los Angeles Rams prevailed over the Cincinnati Bengals to become Super Bowl champions. However, it didn’t take long for major media outlets to put up their way-too-early 2022 NFL power rankings.

Recently, the panel of writers at ESPN did exactly this. But they didn’t have either of the Super Bowl participants in as one of the top two teams. Instead, they both fell in the top five after the Kansas City Chiefs and Buffalo Bills led the pack, respectively.

Steelers fans probably weren’t thrilled to see where their team landed. According to ESPN, they are the 18th-best NFL team heading into the 2022 offseason. This puts them in the bottom half of the league.

Here’s what ESPN’s Brooke Pryor had to say about the status of the Steelers and their concerningly bad quarterback situation:

"2021 record: 9-7-1Offseason in three or fewer words: Make quarterback planThe only quarterback certainty in 2022 is that Ben Roethlisberger won’t be the starter. The Steelers have a plethora of paths forward, but they have to choose one and build the 2022 team around it. The Steelers could hold the status quo with Mason Rudolph and Dwayne Haskins and a camp arm, or they could sign or trade for a veteran to add to the room. Both options could get them to a stronger 2023 quarterback draft class. Or there’s the option of drafting a quarterback in the first round this year. Regardless, the team has to make a plan and lay out a blueprint for the future of Steelers football. — Brooke Pryor"

Obviously, we are always going to take subjective power rankings with a grain of salt. However, it’s not exactly encouraging to see how little experts think of the Steelers when looking ahead to next season… Though, it’s not hard to understand their reasoning.

The Steelers have some talented players on their defense, and I wouldn’t be shocked if this unit bounced back with an excellent season in 2022 — especially if Pittsburgh devotes some of their salary cap space to this department in free agency. However, the quarterback situation is more than concerning and it’s hard to have the Steelers ranked higher than this without knowing who will be under center next year.

If the man at the helm ends up being Mason Rudolph or Dwayne Haskins, Pittsburgh has the potential to drop much lower in the NFL power rankings. Fortunately, I don’t think that’s likely to be the case. However, even if the Steelers draft a quarterback in the first round, there’s no guarantee that he’s going to be ready to play or that he will be good as a rookie when he does step on the field.

Trending. 3 safest selections Steelers could make in the 2022 NFL Draft. light

Right now, the Steelers have a lot more questions than answers, but Mike Tomlin and Kevin Colbert are no doubt looking to solidify this roster to the best of their ability this offseason. With more free-agent spending money than ever before, I’ll be interested to see where ESPN has the Steelers ranked in May.