When should Kenny Pickett start for the Steelers in 2022?

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett (8) participates in minicamp at UPMC Rooney Sports Complex.. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett (8) participates in minicamp at UPMC Rooney Sports Complex.. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

It is uncertain as to whether or not Kenny Pickett will start for the Steelers to open this season, but if he doesn’t, when should he?

One of the largest dilemmas for the Pittsburgh Steelers to tackle is choosing if/when each of their quarterbacks should start in this upcoming season. Realistically, there are only two names that come to mind when addressing such a matter, and those are Mitchell Trubisky and Kenny Pickett.

Trubisky is a former Pro Bowl QB that has been in the league for several years now—with a couple of said years helping him earn some serious playoff experience.

As for Pickett, he is a local college product, being drafted with the Steelers sole 1st-round pick out of the University of Pittsburgh back in April.

With all of that said, there are valid cases to be made in favor of either quarterback starting the season. But when considering just how rocky Pittsburgh’s slate is early on, one option easily makes more sense than the other, and that is Trubisky.

The reasoning behind that call mainly falls on his aforementioned experience advantage. However, regardless of who’s starting, there should be no anticipation for success through the first few weeks due solely to just how difficult they appear to be.

So even with the concerns surrounding Trubisky’s qualities, he gives the Steelers a stronger chance of victory in that stretch than any other QB on the roster today.

But the odds of Pickett seeing no time as a starter this year are slim to say the absolute least, especially when considering the moments throughout Pittsburgh’s run that see a drop in formidability.

When should Steelers start Pickett?

All that leaves is the question of just exactly when Pickett should be expected to make his debut as the starting quarterback, but its answer should not come as much of a surprise. Based on how the 2022-23 Steelers schedule has been formulated, their first true “gimme” will be in week four, when they are set to host the New York Jets.

That game would be the best one to help Pickett get some starting time for a multitude of reasons. First off, the Jets suck (harsh, yet true). Obviously, you shouldn’t throw a rookie QB to the wolves when your opponent has the might of a Cincinnati or New England.

But having to face foes like them before the Jets game is precisely what will justify Pickett taking over, to begin with.

Remember, the likeliness of the Steelers seeing success early is virtually nonexistent due to just how tough the first chunk of their slate is. If Trubisky were to start for said chunk and amass no more than one win (which is quite possible), then deciding to change things up at quarterback would be all the easier to explain.

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So unless Pittsburgh absolutely dominates its competition with Trubisky in weeks one through three, the best option would be for Kenny Pickett to have his first starting gig against the Jets. That way, he has as comfortable and understandable of an entrance to the NFL as possible.