I think I’m having withdrawals. It’s almost July and nothing newsworthy has happened to the Pittsburgh Steelers. I wake up every morning anticipating reading about couches sailing off 14th floor balconies, drug suspensions, and contract holdouts. Instead all we get are workout videos of various Steelers players on Twitter. Who are these guys?? Am I supposed to sit through the first day of training camp with no one arriving in helicopters, tanks, or space ships?? The biggest story of the off-season so far is Bud Dupree calling Mark Kaboly “fat-boy”. That wouldn’t have even cracked the top fifty infractions from the 2017 team. Let’s not forget Terrell Edmunds “liked” an Antonio Brown tweet. Stop the presses!!
The Steelers have been moving in this direction for a few years now. Whether it was by choice or not, they have rid themselves of all of their problem children. But now what? This team is in danger of going from infamous to irrelevant in one off-season. Will a couple of 8-8 seasons have us clamoring for a good old playoff flameout like the old days? Like it or not we have been spoiled the last few seasons. Many (this site included) have been demanding a return to a football-first type of team. Well we got it, and we may end up regretting it. There will be no more Tony toe tap catches. No more Martavis Bryant streaking down the field. The offense will now be Ju Ju double teams, and Benny Snell up the middle for three yards. As for the defense….well we can probably expect more of the same. An inconsistent group who looks great one week, then terrible the next.
So here we are. The distractions are gone, but so is a big chunk of the talent. Ben Roethlisberger just turned 37 and will quarterback a very different offense in 2019. The days of expecting thirty points per game are long gone. In its place will be a run dependent offense with an aging quarterback and only one proven wide out. When you combine a pedestrian offense with an inconsistent defense you get a team that will struggle to win. They won’t be awful, but there is a real possibility the Steelers will be a .500 team or slightly better. What do you get when you combine a boring offense with a 9-7 or 8-8 team……an irrelevant one. You get the Washington Redskins. Sort of good, but not really. Of course there is the possibility all the best case scenarios play out, and this team vaults back to the Super Bowl. We all know which path is more likely though…..don’t we?