Pittsburgh Steelers biggest winners and losers from the 2022 NFL Draft
By Scott Long
The NFL Draft has come and gone, and some players benefitted heavily from the draft, while others were hurt by the outcome for the Steelers.
The Pittsburgh Steelers shocked nobody by selecting a quarterback in the first round of the NFL Draft. However, the rest of their draft did not go down exactly as many expected it would.
Some of the players on Pittsburgh’s current roster benefitted greatly from the players that the Steelers selected, while others were not as lucky. The Steelers roster definitely improved after the draft, but now it’s time to analyze which players gained the most, and which lost the most as a result.
Steelers draft winner: Kenny Pickett
The Steelers first-round selection was spent on Kenny Pickett, the quarterback out of Pittsburgh. It should come as no surprise to see Pickett on the list of winners, as a result of the draft. Not only does Pickett get to stay in the same facility where he played his college football, but he also can compete for the starting quarterback job right out of the gate.
Pickett will compete with Mitch Trubisky for the starting quarterback job in training camp and the preseason, and will absolutely have an opportunity to win the job. While it is possible that he starts the year as the backup, there’s a very strong chance that he is starting at some point this season under center for the Steelers.
When he does play, Pickett will be in one of the best situations he could have landed in this year’s draft. The Steelers made the playoffs last year with Ben Roethlisberger in the final season in his career. Though Roethlisberger is an unquestioned first-ballot Hall of Famer, he did regress last season due to age. However, the Steelers were still able to make the playoffs, thanks in part to some phenomenal play by its stars on both sides of the ball.
Pickett will not have to be a star right away for the team to compete for a playoff spot, instead, he will rely on his defense, his running game, and his potentially explosive offensive weapons to help him succeed. Having cornerstone pieces in place on offense and defense to take pressure off of Pickett will help him develop, and hopefully, turn into the star that the Steelers hope he can be.
Had he been drafted by a team such as the Carolina Panthers, or Atlanta Falcons, he likely would have been thrust into starting right away, and would not have had as much around him. Pittsburgh presents a perfect blend of the potential to start right away combined with a solid core around him to help him succeed.