Steelers Urged to Make Blockbuster QB Move: ‘Go Get that Young Man’

Mike Tomlin Justin Fields

Getty Former wide receiver Keyshawn Johnson argued that the Pittsburgh Steelers should trade for Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields.

The Pittsburgh Steelers have several needs heading into the 2024 season. But the need behind center will be discussed more than any of the others. While discussing Pittsburgh’s quarterback situation on FOX Sports’ Undisputed, NFL analyst and former wide receiver Keyshawn Johnson argued the Steelers should address their quarterback problem by acquiring Chicago Bears signal caller Justin Fields.

“In terms of quarterback fixing for the Pittsburgh Steelers and Mike Tomlin, here’s a guy that they should go get. If the Chicago Bears are stupid enough to get rid of Justin Fields — go get Justin Fields, man,” Johnson argued. “Go get Justin Fields and turn Justin Fields into what you should have gotten out of Kenny Pickett.

“Send him to Pittsburgh and Mike Tomlin and company. Back the truck up and go get that young man, and let’s see what Pittsburgh is in the 2024 year.”

Johnson is hardly the first analyst to suggest the Steelers acquiring Fields. Most recently, ESPN’s Dan Orlovsky named Fields one of three signal callers the Steelers should inquire about this offseason.

Fields owns a 10-28 record as an NFL starting quarterback. But he’s also displayed a unique dual-threat skillset with his arm and legs. In 2023, Fields threw for 2,562 yards and ran for 657 while scoring 20 total touchdowns.

NFL Analysts Connecting Steelers to Justin Fields

Johnson implied that the Steelers and Fields could be a match made in heaven. Johnson provided one main reason for that take — Pittsburgh head coach Mike Tomlin.

But Heavy’s Matt Lombardo expanded on that opinion when he suggested the Steelers as a “wild card” to trade for Fields in early December.

“Playing behind an improved offensive line from what he’s had in Chicago — with George Pickens and Pat Freiermuth to throw to along with bruising running backs Jaylen Warren and Najee Harris alongside him in the backfield — could be exactly what Fields needs in order to reach his star potential,” Lombardo wrote.

Playing for the struggling Bears could be why Fields has just a .263 win percentage as a starting quarterback. As for the Steelers, they posted 10 wins and earned a playoff berth despite finishing in the bottom quarter of the league in yards and points scored.

For much of the season, the Steelers received suspect quarterback play. Even with Mason Rudolph’s performances the final three weeks of the season, Pittsburgh’s signal callers had a 63.8% completion percentage and averaged 6.8 yards per attempt. They also had 13 touchdowns versus 9 interceptions.

Fields certainly has things he needs to improve. For one, he has to cut down on his sacks. In 40 career starts, he has taken 135 sacks.

He also hasn’t displayed elite accuracy. He has submitted a 60.3% completion percentage in his career.

But there are several NFL pundits who have argued even with Fields’ current struggles, he’s better than any quarterback the Steelers had in 2023.

Will Fields Be Available in a Trade?

Fields played better in the second half of 2023, leading the Bears to a 4-3 record down the stretch. That’s led some to speculate that he could stay in Chicago.

But whether the Bears keep Fields is a complicated question.

Chicago possesses the No. 1 pick thanks to trade last season with the Carolina Panthers. Keeping Fields means the Bears would pass on any of the highly-regarded quarterbacks in the 2024 class.

ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler and Courtney Cronin reported on January 2 that “the consensus in an informal poll of league evaluators” placed Fields’ trade value at a second or third-round pick.

If the Bears elected to instead trade the No. 1 pick as they did last year, it could result in two future first-round picks and more draft capital and/or veteran players. Those assets could help Fields fulfill his potential in Chicago.

Money will be a factor too. Fields has one year left on his rookie deal plus the fifth-year option. Drafting a quarterback in 2024 would give the Bears a younger signal caller under team control through at least 2028.

It’s not an easy decision, especially since it will have ramifications for years. But until the Bears reveal the way they are leaning on some of these factors, speculation that Fields is available for a team such as the Steelers is going to continue.

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