NFL Insider Predicts ‘Major Upgrade’ at QB for Pittsburgh Steelers

Getty Ben Roethlisberger waits in the tunnel prior to pregame warmups.

Ever since quarterback Ben Roethlisberger revealed his intentions to retire, the hottest topic of debate has been about how the Pittsburgh Steelers will respond. Will they select a quarterback in the 2022 NFL draft, sign a veteran free agent or promote longtime Roethlisberger backup Mason Rudolph?

While many in the local Steelers media believe it to be the latter, Pro Football Talk‘s Mike Florio said not so fast.

“It can’t be Mason Rudolph,” Florio told 93.7 The Fan on January 21. “I’ll hit myself in the head with my own helmet if they bring him back. He’s not even good enough to be a backup. Haven’t we seen enough of Mason Rudolph?”

Florio believes the Steelers are in a good situation to add a solid quarterback to their roster for the 2022 season.

“I think the Steelers are in a position where with the coaching, with the organization, with the fan base, with Najee Harris, with the receivers — now, the offensive line needs to get better. The defense is so good.”

“If I’m a veteran quarterback and I’m looking for a better place to play, a place where I think I’ve got a better chance to win, Pittsburgh’s on my shortlist. And I think if the Steelers play it the right way, not only do they get somebody who’s going to make them much better, but maybe they can do it under terms that are extremely favorable financially. Because maybe you can get somebody to take less money so they can go out and, and upgrade along the offensive line.”

Of course, it all sounds great in a perfect world, but Florio is purely riffing.

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“Let’s see who ends up coaching, where and who the coordinators are,” Florio added. “Then once that quarterback carousel starts to spin, they can end up coming out of it with a major upgrade over their quarterback in 2021.”

This isn’t exactly a bold statement. Any quarterback not named Mason Rudolph or Dwayne Haskins is an upgrade.

But Florio isn’t wrong about Rudolph not being the answer. He’s had 10 chances to show he’s got the makings to be a starting quarterback in this league, and the results have been underwhelming.

Maybe things will be different once Roethlisberger is officially out of the picture and Rudolph doesn’t have to play second fiddle.

Dwayne Haskins Sticking Around

A source of ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler indicates that it’s expected the Pittsburgh Steelers will place a restricted free agent tender on Dwayne Haskins. The deadline for RFAs to sign their tender sheets is April 22.

In an exit interview with general manager Kevin Colbert, Haskins was told he’ll have the opportunity to compete for the starting role. “I have a chance to start,” Haskins told the Steelers media in a January 19 press conference.

“I feel like I can be a starter in this league. I got drafted for that reason,” said Haskins. “I definitely believe I have the talent to. I just haven’t put it all together yet. And that’s something I have to do this offseason to put myself in a position to play.”

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