Steelers need to stick with veteran free agent back up QB formula
From 1990-1992 Bubby Brister and Neil O’Donnell backed each other up. Both were Steeler 3rd round draft picks. Both left the Steelers to have successful careers as back ups. The backup quarterbacks the Steelers have had since 1993 that did not come by way of the Steelers draft:
Mike Tomczak 1985 UFA Chicago Steelers 1993-1999
Kent Graham 1992 8thround NY Giants Steelers 2000
Tommy Maddox 1992 1stround Denver Steelers 2001-2005
Charlie Batch 1998 2ndround Detroit Steelers 2003-
Byron Leftwich 2003 1stround Jacksonville Steelers 2008, 2010-2012
With the exception of Kent Graham the remaining 4 have had success with Pittsburgh and brought stability to the organization at the quarterback position for the past 20 years – through veteran free agent signings, not the draft.
Maddox and Tomczak both saved entire seasons when they took over the starting role during the season leading the Steelers to the playoffs. Maddox for Stewart in 2002 and Tomczak for Miller in 1996. For 10 years Charlie Batch has filled in at key times and had some significant wins for the Steelers which was never more evident than this past years upset win at Baltimore, the eventual Superbowl Champion. The Steelers need to use their picks today on positions of need and continue to let the other NFL teams do their grooming for them.