PITTSBURGH -- The Pittsburgh Steelers have been named to multiple trades this offseason, but none more interesting than those that involve a quarterback.
As Ben Roethlisberger heads towards 39-years-old, carrying a $41.25 million cap hit in 2021 and no definite answer to whether he'll play another season, the Steelers could be in need for a young and vibrant passer.
So, of course, they'll be a hot name to list as potential landing spots for tradable quarterbacks. And, of course, one of those quarterbacks is Deshaun Watson.
Sports Illustrated's Connor Orr placed the Steelers as the fourth-best team to receive Watson this offseason.
"If culture is indeed one of the largest draws for Watson, there is no better coach to align with long term than Mike Tomlin," Orr wrote. "Tomlin will be in Pittsburgh. He treats his team fairly. He has expertly piloted it through choppy waters countless times before. Now, with Ben Roethlisberger's future in question, the Steelers need to decide by the middle of March if they would like to keep the future Hall of Famer on board for another season at an exorbitant price."
They're not the only publication to believe this is a possibility. The Score put a trade scenario out into the world that got fans talking, but can it really work?
Here's the trade:
Steelers Get: Watson
Texans Get: Stephon Tuitt, 2021 first-round pick, 2021 second-round pick, 2022 first-round pick and 2023 first-round pick
Very understandable trade, right? Probably not.
The Steelers aren't sending Tuitt anywhere at the moment. Maybe their offense needs some work, but their defense continues to be one of the best in the NFL, and Tuitt has secured his place as a star within that group.
Second, where are the Steelers getting the money for Watson's $35 million cap hit in 2021? If they're worried about Roethlisberger's cost this season, imagine trying to squeeze $35 million in a budget when T.J. Watt and Minkah Fitzpatrick need contract extensions at the end of the year.
Lastly, three first-round picks would never leave the hands of the Steelers. This team made headlines for moving up to the 10th pick to draft Devin Bush. It was only the second time during general manager Kevin Colbert's tenure that they're traded up in the first round. It won't suddenly happen again - with three picks.
Then, we have Ryan Wilson of CBS Sports, who suggests the Steelers could be in for a draft-day trade to the top ten.
The Steelers, who currently draft 24th, will send a handful of first-round picks to the Dallas Cowboys in order to move up to No. 10 and draft North Dakota State quarterback Trey Lance.
Steelers Get: 10th overall pick (Trey Lance)
Cowboys Get: 2021 first-round pick, 2021 second-round pick and 2022 first-round pick
Honestly, this makes more sense than the Watson situation, but it still isn't realistic.
First, Wilson has Lance as the fourth quarterback to drafted in the top 10. Trevor Lawrence, Zach Wilson, Justin Fields and Mac Jones will all be gone by pick five.
Second, there are more pressing needs for this Steelers team than finding the successor of Roethlisberger. So, if they're going to give up their second-round pick for a player who will not start in 2021, how are they getting better?
Pittsburgh needs to find a running back to replace James Conner, an offensive lineman, or a few, and possibly some defensive help, depending on which cap casualties they'll have to move on from.
Adding Lance does secure a solid starting quarterback for the future, but it doesn't help a team who's putting all their eggs in one basket to try and win with their Hall of Fame quarterback still around.
Would either trade be great for the future of this team? Yes. Heck, Watson would make the Steelers a Super Bowl contender if they were able to afford him.
Realistically, they aren't options, though. The Steelers are stuck without either of these names for the time being. And maybe that's tough for the road ahead, but it helps add pieces to the puzzle for when they do need to make a decision at quarterback. Which likely isn't this offseason.