Every Steelers player ranked by tiers entering the 2023 offseason
Steelers Tier 6: Solid backups in limited roles
Zach Gentry, James Pierre, DeMarvin Leal, Mitch Trubisky, Derek Watt
As backups, expectations weren’t nearly as high for these players as they were for starters in tier 5, and because of their part-time roles, their jobs were a bit easier. These players proved to be solid in their limited roles but didn’t necessarily do anything that this team couldn’t replace fairly easily.
I thought Zach Gentry had a respectable season as the team’s ‘Y’ tight end working behind Pat Freiermuth. Gentry was a solid blocker and was barely used in the passing game. If asked to jump into a starting role, however, I think he would be a lot more disappointing.
Mitch Trubisky was not good early in the season compared to other starters around the league. However, when he reverted to a backup role, he had some quality moments for the Steelers last year — his biggest coming in a very good second-half performance against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Young defenders James Pierre and DeMarvin Leal didn’t give the Steelers a ton of defensive snaps during the 2022 season, but the sample of play we saw from them was solid — each with their moments of ups and downs. Meanwhile, fullback Derek Watt was primarily a special teamer but did a good job in his limited role on offense.