Gil Brandt of NFL.com recently listed 13 teams that could be in line to select a quarterback in this May’s draft. Brandt listed the prospective teams in groups according to their need for a signal-caller ‘Must-have’ and ‘Depth collection.” In the ‘Depth collection’ group, Brandt said the following about the Pittsburgh Steelers and their quarterback situation:
Ben Roethlisberger has two more years left on a contract that puts a $19 million hit on the Steelers’ cap next year. Is Ben going to give a hometown discount like Tom Brady did? It’s a big question that might get some answers in the upcoming draft.
Although Roethlisberger’s future past his current contract has yet to be solved, I have a hard time believing that the Steelers would select a quarterback during the 2014 NFL Draft. Due to their multitude of other roster needs, Pittsburgh’s brass are not really in a position to burn future draft choices on signal-callers who will sit behind Roethlsiberger for at least two more seasons.
In fact, the Steelers’ front office did that very thing in April when they selected Landry Jones out of Oklahoma. One has to believe that they would give the fourth round selection another year to develop, and they still have veteran Bruce Gradkowski under contract through the 2015 campaign.
Although I am not remotely sold on Jones being a capable replacement for Roethlisberger down the road, this franchise has far too many holes (left tackle, tight end, wide receiver, cornerback, inside linebacker, etc.) to fill to ignore them so they can select another signal-caller.
Of course, plans can change and Kevin Colbert & co. could surprise everybody again like they did when they selected Jones with one of their two fourth round picks this past year.
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