The Kenny Pickett era in Pittsburgh has been well underway, but could his time as the Steelers’ starter be over quicker than we think? The 2022 quarterback class was seen as a weaker one. This was evidenced by just one quarterback being taken in the first round, and that was Kenny Pickett.
It’s debatable whether or not any of the top quarterbacks in that class were worthy of first round picks, and I think it’s likely that the Pittsburgh connections motivated the Steelers to take him. Coming out of the University of Pittsburgh, Pickett spent five years in college and came into the NFL as a 24 year old.
So, he’s old, which isn’t the best thing. Secondly, I think there’s a bigger problem with Pickett that may end up leaving him no longer the starter of the team, perhaps as early as next year. The rookie quarterback isn’t overly talented.
His arm is fine. His accuracy is fine. His mobility is fine. He’s a lot like Kirk Cousins or Derek Carr; he can do most things that a franchise quarterback can, but he’s nothing special. What exactly have Derek Carr and Kirk Cousins won in the NFL thus far?
His NFL Draft profile, written by Lance Zierlein, compares him to Andy Dalton in his prime years…
Well, the Andy Dalton “prime” years weren’t exactly that special. His best passing years came from 2015-2018. His Bengals went 28-27-1, and Dalton threw for 89 touchdowns, 38 interceptions and had a 93.0 passer rating.
Kenny Pickett isn’t an overly athletic, dual threat quarterback that some of the best passers in the NFL are. He doesn’t have a lively arm to make the ridiculous throws that some of the game’s best make.
He’ll also likely need a very good roster around him to succeed. That’s exactly what a prime Andy Dalton, Kirk Cousins, and Derek Carr needed/need to succeed.
He may not be a bad quarterback by any means, but I’m not sure this first round selection was warranted. He’s not special, and that’s the problem.