3 reasons Kenny Pickett should win Steelers starting QB job from the gate

Kenny Pickett #8 of the Pittsburgh Panthers. (Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)
Kenny Pickett #8 of the Pittsburgh Panthers. (Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images) /
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The Pittsburgh Steelers have a full room of quarterbacks, but here’s why rookie Kenny Pickett should earn the starting role from the gate.

In today’s NFL, rookies are being asked to step in and play much sooner than ever before. This doesn’t necessarily mean that all of them are better prepared than they were in the past. Rather, the price of some of these players will skyrocket on their second deal, and teams try to get the most out of them on a cheap contract.

The Steelers recently selected QB Kenny Pickett in the first round of the 2022 NFL Draft. While we knew Pittsburgh was going with a quarterback, this was an interesting choice — considering that the Steelers already had a capable stop-gap veteran signed in Mitch Trubisky.

Instead of opting for the high upside of someone like Malik Willis, Pickett is now ‘the guy’ in Pittsburgh. Despite the options on their roster, here are three reasons why Kenny Pickett should start from day one:

Steelers drafted a pro-ready quarterback

In terms of pro-readiness, we can assume that Mitch Trubisky will be perhaps more prepared to play from the gate than Pickett (thanks to already having 50 starts under his belt). However, it wouldn’t make a ton of sense for the Steelers to draft a 24-year-old rookie who played five college seasons only to have him redshirt the first year of his rookie deal.

Kenny Pickett doesn’t have NFL experience, but he has loads of it in college and was widely considered the most pro-ready prospect of the 2022 quarterback class. He has shown the ability to go through progressions, layer his throws, and extend the play when needed.

This isn’t to say that Pickett won’t see struggles from the gate — especially behind a shaky offensive line. But Pittsburgh drafted a pro-ready prospect who might as well start getting the experience.