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Mike Tomlin Hints Kenny Pickett Will Face Competition for Steelers’ Starting QB Job

The Pittsburgh Steelers once again struggled to find much consistency at quarterback position in 2023. 

Heading into the 2024 NFL season, coach Mike Tomlin already plans to keep Kenny Pickett as the team’s starter. However, it’s not a guarantee.

“He will [be the starter], but obviously there will be competition,” Tomlin said Thursday. “There’s always competition in this thing. We don’t anoint anyone. I’m appreciative of his efforts and where he is and excited about continuing to work with him, but certainly he will be challenged from a competition perspective moving forward. Competition brings the best out in all of us.”

Pickett made 12 starts this season before suffering a high ankle sprain in December. He finished his season with a 62% completion rate and threw for 2,070 yards, six touchdowns and four interceptions.

Backup Mitchell Trubisky then started the next two games, which both resulted in losses, so coach Mike Tomlin decided to mix it up and start third-string quarterback Mason Rudolph for the final three games. Rudolph led the Steelers to three consecutive wins, and then started in the team’s wild-card game against the Bills.

Trubisky signed a two-year extension before the 2023 season and is under contract through 2024. Rudolph, though, will be an unrestricted free agent this offseason.