Steelers QB Mitchell Trubisky makes case for starting over rookie Kenny Pickett
from Zac Wassink, with YardBarker.com/www.yardbarker.com
As recently as last week, free-agent signing Mitchell Trubisky was widely viewed as the unnamed and uncrowned starting quarterback of the Pittsburgh Steelers over rookie Kenny Pickett and backup Mason Rudolph. That was after Pickett completed 13-of-15 passes for 95 yards and two touchdowns in the preseason opener against the Seattle Seahawks but before the 24-year-old hit on 6-of-7 attempts for 76 yards and a score at the Jacksonville Jaguars this past weekend.
Following that second exhibition contest, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported during an on-air segment that he expects Pickett to take over under center “as soon as Mitchell Trubisky has a stumble early in the season.”
It appears Trubisky may have heard such remarks.
The former Chicago Bears starter who served as a backup with the Buffalo Bills last season wasn’t awful in his first two August appearances. He completed 9-of-15 throws for 123 yards and a touchdown. Per Myles Simmons of Pro Football Talk, the 28-year-old appeared to make the case for why he should start over Pickett with his latest public comments.
“It’s been a limited sample, but I think I’ve done a lot of great things in practice, a lot of good throws in the game,” Trubisky explained. “Just focus on what we can improve as a unit right now. And that’s staying on the field on third down and then going down and finishing with some points. Especially last game, would like to stay on the field a little bit longer and finish in the end zone. We’re just looking to see what we can improve and keep doing that.
“But, I’ve done a lot of great things so far, and I feel really comfortable with where I’m at and how I’m throwing the football and how I’m learning the playbook and going through all my reads so far.”
The Steelers host the Detroit Lions in their preseason finale Sunday. Trubisky added he expects to start that game and leave no doubt he should be the club’s QB1 for the Week 1 matchup at the division-rival Cincinnati Bengals on Sept. 11.
“Would like to do more last game obviously, but hopefully get another opportunity this week to show why I should be,” Trubisky said of potentially leading the offense when the games begin to matter. “It’s your whole body of work. Everything I’ve done in my career up to this point — what I’ve done in minicamp, the practices at Latrobe, and the preseason games.”
Individuals such as Schefter and NFL Media’s Daniel Jeremiah seem to doubt Trubisky’s ability to keep the first-year pro a spectator through the fall. Perhaps the veteran can use such takes as bulletin-board material over the final several days of the preseason portion of the calendar.