Does the Steelers 2024 schedule portend a doomed season?

The Steelers 2024 schedule has been released. Will this be Mike Tomlin's first losing season?
Mar 25, 2024; Orlando, FL, USA;  Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin
Mar 25, 2024; Orlando, FL, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin / Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Well, I don't know about you but when I saw the Steelers 2024 schedule, my initial thought was this: what in the world is the NFL trying to do to us? We open the season with two straight road games, then one home game then another road game. Yikes!

In other words, three of our first four games are on the road. That's terrible, but then we play three of the next four games at home, which is not terrible, but depending on how we play on the road in those three games, we could find ourselves in a deep hole out of which we may not be able to dig ourselves.

The Steelers 2024 schedule could bring Mike Tomlin a losing season for the first time

Let's think about that for a minute. Mike Tomlin has never had a losing season since being named our head coach in 2007. That is an incredible accomplishment, but one that I fear may be overshadowed by what, at least, on paper looks like a losing campaign.

I could be wrong and I hope I am but let's look at the first two games as a small sample of what we could be up against in 2024. We open the season on the road against the Atlanta Falcons, the very team that fired Arthur Smith, our current offensive coordinator after finishing the 2023 season with a record of seven wins and ten losses.

If that is not baptism by fire for Smith and the Steelers offense, I don't know what is. While I don't know this to be factual, I suspect that Smith will be motivated, to say the least, to face his former team. Someone else who will, I'm sure, be motivated to face his former team is Russell Wilson.

Week two brings the Steelers to Denver to face the Broncos, the very team that released Wilson following the 2023 season. I think it's fair to say that Wilson's time with the Broncos was lackluster, but for an organization to decide to release a player who would saddle them with an eighty-five million dollar cap hit over the next two seasons tells me all I need to know about how things really went down, so to speak.

Look, I am obviously hoping that Wilson has a stellar season for us, one that includes a win over his former team, but if we lose the first two games and end up winning only one out of our first four games, I think the season may be over at that point.

We would have one win and three losses after the first four games, two of those losses would be conference losses. Those losses are hard to overcome down the stretch when other teams are vying for playoff seeding. It is certainly not out of the realm of possibility that we overcome those losses, but I don't see that happening.

If you look at the rest of the schedule, we play seven conference games in an eight-game stretch. Of those seven conference games, six are AFC North divisional games. Again, what is the NFL trying to do to us? Are they purposely trying to set us up for failure because it sure seems like they are?

So, what would this mean for Tomlin? If we have our first losing season, will Tomlin be on the 'hot seat'? I don't think so. Tomlin has accumulated enough equity, in my opinion, to survive one losing season, but the fact that Art Rooney II stated that the offseason moves were designed to make the Steelers better as quickly as possible, I don't see how the offseason moves coupled with the schedule will make us better.

One thing is certain and that is the Steelers 2024 season will be an interesting ride to take so fasten your seatbelts and hold on because we're in for some turbulence.