Steelers QB report card: Kenny Pickett steals the show again
The Steelers offense struggled this week compared to last game, but the QBs mostly did their job. Here is how they faired against the Jaguars.
The Steelers quarterbacks were riding high this week after a great collective effort against the Seahawks last week, but the offense around them didn’t perform nearly as well this go around. The rushing game was non-existent and the offensive line was…offensive.
Despite their supporting cast not showing up, all three QBs had their moments. One, in particular, stole the show, but let’s start with the current Steelers projected starting QB.
Steelers Trubisky gets no help from O-line
Mitch Trubisky has been firmly entrenched as the Steelers starting QB throughout camp and has mostly lived up to that honor. Against the Jaguars, he was 5 of 8 passing for 60 yards, including several plays where he avoided what looked like a guaranteed sack. He was under pressure constantly, but really only had one bad miss on a deep ball to Diontae Johnson.
The running game did him no favors as well. Several carries ended up losing yards while he was at QB. He even was even second on the team in rushing with just one carry for ten yards. Overall, he did well considering how poor the offensive line played in front of him. He even completed a nice deep pass to Chase Claypool for one of the biggest plays of the game.
Despite a solid performance from Trubisky, I have a feeling Steelers fans will be talking more about the QB who relieved him in the 2nd quarter.
Steelers Kenny Pickett steals the show once again
Kenny Pickett was expected to be the number two QB this week after a very efficient debut against Seattle. Going 13 for 15 and completing a game-winning drive is about as great a way to start your career as possible.
What he did in limited action against the Jaguars might be even more impressive, however. After his first drive stalled due to penalties, Pickett orchestrated a beautiful drive to end the half. He finished 6 of 7 for 76 yards and that end-of-half score.
Pickett is now 19 of 22 for 171 yards and three touchdowns so far this preseason. His poise and quick decision-making have been stellar to start his career. It may only be preseason, but this is exactly the kind of quality outings he needed to challenge Trubisky for the starting job. I don’t think it will be week one, but don’t be surprised if Trubisky has a short leash.
Steelers Mason Rudolph looks as expected
If you were to just look at Mason Rudolph’s stats on the day, you would think he had a conservative but still great performance. He finished 17 of 21 for 127 yards and a game-winning touchdown. The problem for Rudolph is that he put up that stat line against mostly guys who might not make the Jaguars roster.
He was very efficient overall but only averaged six yards per attempt, not a number that you want to see from a veteran against backup players. He also committed intentional grounding that resulted in a safety, giving the Jaguars an 8-7 lead in the third quarter.
If Rudolph wanted to keep his number two spot on the depth chart, it was going to take either a bad performance from Pickett or a great one from himself. Unfortunately for him, neither happened against Jacksonville.