What if Pickett has a below-average season for the Steelers?
I figured I would start on the more negative side of things first. While the expectation is that Pickett will show some growth in his second season, that isn’t a sure thing by any means. Plenty of rookie quarterbacks have faltered in their second season. Unfortunately, if Pickett does that, the Steelers are in real trouble.
A below-average season is thus outlined above. Notable is that Pickett is attempting 50 more total passes but actually sees his completion percentage regress. This leads to a similar yardage output as what his rookie season would have been had he started every game. The actual passing yards per game remain consistent.
Where things really go wrong is with his efficiency and ability to protect the ball and score. His touchdown ratio only marginally increases, but the lack of efficiency leads to a lackluster showing there. You will need your starting quarterback to accumulate more than 11 passing scores.
The interception ratio, while slightly improved as well, ends up equaling his touchdown ratio. Throwing 11 interceptions isn’t the end of the world, but only tossing 11 touchdowns to go along with that is disappointing. Even in a run-heavy offense, Pickett still struggles when tasked with throwing the ball.
The least notable is his rushing stats. His overall efficiency is worse there. While Pickett won’t be a huge threat on the ground, he can hurt a defense with his legs. In this scenario, he doesn’t really do that. A season like this wouldn’t be the end of Pickett with the Steelers, but it would significantly hurt his odds of being a top guy for the long haul.