Steelers news: James Harrison rips 'the standard', Heyward defends Pickett, and more

  • James Harrison doesn't like the new 'standard' in Pittsburgh
  • Cameron Heyward thinks Kenny Pickett needs more time
  • Steelers take Senior Bowl standout in latest mock draft

Steelers, James Harrison
Steelers, James Harrison / Michael Longo/For USA Today Network /

It's been a busy week of interviews in Las Vegas for Super Bowl Radio Row. In the days leading up to the Chiefs vs. 49ers matchup in Super Bowl LVIII, hundreds of current and former NFL players are in Las Vegas to speak to the media. The Pittsburgh Steelers have some representatives on hand as well.

While the primary focus is on the upcoming Super Bowl, Radio Row has included some interesting interviews. What happens in Vegas isn't staying in Vegas, as former NFL players are getting candid when speaking about the team they used to play for. In the latest Steelers news, James Harrison blasts the new 'standard' in Pittsburgh, while Cameron Heyward attempts to defend QB Kenny Pickett.

James Harrison rips 'the standard' of settling for non-losing seasons

Former Steelers outside linebacker, James Harrison, recently joined the Pat McAfee Show at Radio Row in Las Vegas, and you could just tell that Harrison was ready to ruffle some feathers. Harrison didn't hold back when talking about his former team, and he explained that 'the standard' in Pittsburgh is not what it used to be.

"The expectations should never change. I think the expectations have become, ‘We don’t want to have a losing season. I’m not throwing salt or flak at anybody. But the Pittsburgh Steelers standard is to win Lombardis. When you go into that building, there’s six of them sitting there, and right now, we’re not even winning a playoff game. I think we need to get back to what the standard of the Pittsburgh Steelers legacy, the lore is. That’s [non-losing seasons] just not what it is."

James Harrison via The Pat McAfee Show

Though he hasn't been a part of the team in years, Harrison is clearly annoyed by the lack of playoff success his former team has had. The Steelers are currently on a seven-year drought without a single playoff victory, and they have won just 3 playoff games over the past 13 years.

Art Rooney II voiced his frustration with the lack of playoff success a few weeks back. Now it's up to Mike Tomlin and the front office to make the necessary steps to get this team back on a winning track.

Cameron Heyward comes to the defense of QB Kenny Pickett

Cameron Heyward has also been speaking to the media in Las Vegas this week. While Harrison was critical of the team, Heyward has taken the opposite approach. The three-time Steelers All-Pro met up with Scott Ferrall of SportsGrid where he adamantly defended Kenny Pickett and explained that he simply needs more time to develop.

"It's tough, the scrutiny already for quarterbacks, it's insane because you'll get guys that have never played talking about how a quarterback should be this. And then if they're not Pat Mahomes as soon as they step on the field, you're inconsistent; you're not the guy. But I think there is growth... I don't think we award people the growth in our league enough. I think there's time to keep improving. I think Kenny can be a heck of a quarterback in this league." "

Heyward isn't oblivious to the draft investment this team made at the quarterback position, and he's trusting that the former first-round pick can take the next step in Year 3. A few weeks back, head coach Mike Tomlin gave a glowing endorsement for Pickett when he insisted that his starting quarterback for the 2024 season was already on the roster.

Steelers take Senior Bowl standout in NFL mock draft

On Thursday, NFL Draft writer Chis Trapasso of CBS Sports released the latest version of his 2024 NFL mock draft with Senior Bowl Week now in the books. Despite a run on defensive backs in the top half of the first round, Trapasso has the Pittsburgh Steelers selecting cornerback, Quinyon Mitchell.

The Toledo product was one of the biggest risers during Senior Bowl week as he showcased the ability to match up one-on-one in the open field against all of the receivers on hand in Mobile. The Steelers will certainly be in the market for a cornerback this offseason, and pairing Mitchell with Joey Porter Jr. in the secondary would give their defense a much-needed boost.