Steelers should make Cooper Rush a top priority in free agency

Steelers, Cooper Rush
Steelers, Cooper Rush / Mitchell Leff/GettyImages

As the Pittsburgh Steelers prepare for the offseason ahead, free agency will be the first major event to see if they're able to fill some of the gaps on their team. They don't have much salary cap room to work with but with restructuring contracts and cutting players in salary cap-saving moves, they can hopefully have enough to sign at least a few key free agents.

Quarterback is the most important position on the team and at this point in time, the Steelers still have a huge question mark there. Yes, quarterback Kenny Pickett is the golden child as their first-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft but he still needs a lot of work that will come with time. Quarterback Mitch Trubisky will likely be a salary cap casualty and Mason Rudolph is barely a third-string quarterback at best.

It would be in the best interest of the Steelers to try and nab a high-quality veteran quarterback via free agency that can come right in, start, and let Pickett sit for a season or two. Sure, it might be an old-school thought process here but Pickett has shown signs of being a very good quarterback but still needs to learn all the ins and outs of the position. Most of which he can learn by sitting, learning, and developing the right way instead of being thrown into the fire again.

If the Steelers are able to land a solid veteran quarterback to allow Pickett to learn from the sidelines to develop the right way into being the franchise quarterback this team needs, that would be the ideal situation. If they're able to keep Pickett as a backup for 2023 and even 2024 while having a solid veteran starter taking care of business, he will undoubtedly be in a great place to do some amazing things when the team is handed to him when he's finally ready.

Steelers should pursue Cooper Rush in free agency

The perfect veteran free agent quarterback that can be a starter for the Steelers next season and even the following season would be Cooper Rush. Make no mistake about it, last season with the Dallas Cowboys, Rush stepped in for an injured Dak Prescott and delivered some incredible results.

Last season, Rush totaled 94 completions on 162 attempts, 1,051 passing yards, five touchdowns, and 3 interceptions. He went 4-1 before Prescott was ready to come back and was one of the biggest surprises last season. Rush will be an unrestricted free agent this offseason and even though he wouldn't break the bank for a team to land him as a free agent, he would be coming into a great situation with the Steelers. One where he could start for a few seasons, do his part in developing Pickett, and help the Steelers win more football games.

It's no secret the Steelers are a team that's rebuilding for the future but they have some great offensive weapons to work with now. Rush would be able to come right in and immediately be an upgrade over everyone currently on the roster at the moment. He could start for the Steelers and be the perfect stopgap before the franchise is ready to go back to Pickett in a year or two so he can run the show from a whole new perspective.

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Considering that Pickett isn't quite yet ready yet would make going after Rush in free agency a top priority for the Steelers. He put on quite the show last season keeping the Cowboys a playoff-contending team so it would be expected that many other teams will also try to nab Rush immediately when they're able to. Hopefully, general manager Omar Khan works his magic and can bring Rush to the Steel City. It would be imperative for Pickett's overall development to be the franchise quarterback the Steelers need in this post-Ben Roethlisberger era.