The Pittsburgh Steelers are in search of a new starting quarterback for the first time in nearly 20 years. And as expected, the NFL Draft seems to be the most-fitting place for them to find one.
With Ben Roethlisberger heading into the retirement and the Steelers' season ending in the Wild Card round of the playoffs, it's time to begin predicting the next passer of Pittsburgh's offense.
In the latest The Athletic and Pro Football Focus mock drafts, the Steelers select two different quarterbacks with their first round pick.
The Athletic's Dan Brugler says the Steelers land the third quarterback taken in the 2022 NFL Draft. After Kenny Pickett goes to the Washington Football Team at No. 11 and Matt Corral heads to the New Orleans Saints at No. 18, Pittsburgh selects North Carolina gun-slinger Sam Howell.
"With Ben Roethlisberger likely having played his final game in a Steelers’ uniform, there is a 'Quarterback Wanted' sign hanging on the front of Heinz Field," Bruglar writes. "Although Howell’s junior season didn’t go exactly according to plan, he has NFL-level arm talent and mobility and is ready to step in as the Steelers’ starter from day one."
PFF believes the Steelers will land the fourth quarterback taken in the draft, sticking with their hometown Heisman finalist Kenny Pickett at No. 20.
"A consistent knock on Pickett will be that he’s a fifth-year senior and one of the older quarterback prospects in the 2022 class, but that shouldn’t keep him from being a top-20 pick in April’s draft," PFF writes. "A finalist for the Heisman Trophy, Pickett completed 334-of-499 attempts for 4,308 yards, 42 touchdowns and seven interceptions this season. He earned a career-high 92.3 PFF grade that ranked top-five among all quarterbacks in 2021. His PFF passing grade from a clean pocket was also among the best in all of college football at 94.3.
Pickett is selected behind Howll 9th to the Broncos, Corral 11th to Washington and Cincinnati's Desmond Rider 18th to the Saints.
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