3 difficult decisions Steelers will need to make this offseason

Pittsburgh Steelers, Steelers
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Steelers must decide whether to stick with Kenny Pickett or move on

Truthfully, the Steelers front office and coaching staff are hoping their 2022 first-round investment is the long-term answer at the most important position in sports. However, there is enough evidence in his play to say maybe Kenny Pickett isn't the answer for the Steelers.

Pickett will be 26 ahead of the 2024 season, entering his third season. In two years, Pickett has completed just under 63% of his passes with 13 touchdowns to 13 interceptions. While he's had late-game heroics, particularly as a rookie and on two occasions against the Baltimore Ravens, his consistency has been lacking. It seemed like every week somebody on X was pointing out another quarterback who had more multi-touchdown performances than him or more career touchdowns within a few weeks.

Pickett is bound to get his shot in 2024 unless the Steelers pursue and land Kirk Cousins in free agency, which isn't out of the question. The difficult decision is whether or not to even do such a thing in the first place.

Cousins, along with Baker Mayfield and trade options like Justin Fields and Geno Smith, would be a significant upgrade over Pickett. But, the Steelers have proven to be a loyal franchise, willing to give players a chance. Does Kenny Pickett have enough going for him to have the Steelers stay out of the quarterback free-agency race?

The NFL Draft is another scenario as the quarterback class has exciting names after Caleb Williams and Drake Maye are selected in the top 5. Are the Steelers interested in trading up for Jayden Daniels or Michael Penix? It doesn't seem likely, but it would be understandable.

The Steelers have so far indicated that Pickett will have competition in 2024 to get the job. All signs point to Mason Rudolph being in that battle, though he does have to re-sign with the team first. But who else is going to step in with a realistic chance of taking over in Pittsburgh?

The Steelers have options to address the quarterback room, but how they do it shows how committed to Pickett they are. If they bring in a Jameis Winston or Ryan Tannehill or draft a quarterback in round three or later as competition, they want Pickett to win the job. If they pursue or land an upgrade like Cousins, they're done with him before he even hits the last year of his contract.