The Pittsburgh Steelers have started a mini-winning streak after earning their second straight victory at Acrisure Stadium. Surprisingly, Matt Canada's offense had a strong start in Week 10 against the Green Bay Packers -- scoring their second straight opening drive touchdown en route to 17 first-half points.
In the first half, Pittsburgh's offense surprisingly outplayed the defense. The Steelers held the lead all game against the Packers, but this was once again a contest that came down to the wire as they weren't able to pull away from their inferior opponent.
With a strong performance by running backs Jaylen Warren and Najee Harris, the Steelers were able to control the tempo of the game and narrowly win the time of possession battle. Eventually, Tomlin's team was able to hang onto a 23-19 victory. But for the second straight game, Pittsburgh's opponent had a chance to rally late to win with a touchdown on the final drive.
The Steelers are now remarkably 6-3 heading into Week 11. This team keeps finding ways to hang on and win close contests. Sadly, they are winning despite their quarterback play, not because of it.
Major questions surround Kenny Pickett after another Steelers win
The end result continues to be what Steelers fans are looking for. This team is three games above .500 heading into Week 11. But their means of getting to the results leave us wanting so much more from the quarterback position.
In Week 10 against the Packers, the Steelers were able to pulverize Green Bay on the ground with 205 rushing yards while the defense picked off Jordan Love twice. Even with these advantages, the Packers had a chance to win the game on the final play in the fourth quarter.
The reason the Steelers have struggled to pull away from inferior teams is because of their pedestrian quarterback play. Kenny Pickett had every advantage in this contest, but he couldn't make anything happen through the air. He also had several questionable throws that could have resulted in interceptions.
By the end of the game, Pickett managed to complete just 14 of 23 passes for a mere 1265 yards, per ESPN box score stats. This equated to a dismal 5.5 yards per attempt to go with a cringeworthy 75.6 passer rating.
We are now a year and a half into Pickett's NFL career, and not much has changed. If anything, you could argue that the former first-round pick is playing worse in Year 2 than he did as a rookie in 2022. But when the Steelers continue to win football games, they aren't likely to alter the game plan on offense.
Pickett has taken care of the ball well enough this year, and at this rate, it could be enough to get Pittsburgh a spot in the postseason. However, this team won't stand a shot in the playoffs if they don't start getting more out of their starting quarterback.
Kenny Pickett now has just 6 passing touchdowns entering Week 11 of the 2023 season. In terms of EPA, QBR, yards per attempt, and passer rating, Pickett ranks among the worst quarterbacks in the league this year.
It doesn't matter how many regular season games this team wins. The performance by the Steelers' quarterback is making us lose hope that Kenny Pickett is ever going to be the answer for this team.