June 15, 2024

Steelers latest QB drama is further proof Mike Tomlin's standard is long  gone

If true, Chad Johnson just scooped the rest of the NFL. On the latest episode of his Nightcap podcast with co-host Shannon Sharpe, Johnson believes Russell Wilson’s next NFL stop is with the Pittsburgh Steelers. During Tuesday’s episode Johnson shared what he’s hearing about Wilson.

“We gotta work on the Steelers now,” Johnson said of the team’s quarterback situation. “A little birdie told me, and I said this many shows ago, Russell Wilson’s coming on over to the Steelers.”

Johnson didn’t expand on who that “little birdie” is and I’m not aware of him making these comments before, though I trust he did at some point. Wilson is fully expected to part ways with the Denver Broncos in the coming weeks. Benched late in the season with his house up for sale, the Broncos are likely to cut him ahead of free agency.

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Acquired for a king’s ransom ahead of the 2022 season, Wilson didn’t work out in Denver. In two years, he went 11-19 as a starter, throwing 42 touchdowns and 19 interceptions. On tape, his mobility has declined and he’s prone to taking too many bad sacks, dropped a league-high 55 times in 2022 and 45 times in 15 games this past year. Negative plays have stacked up against his positive ones and after a solid start to 2023, Wilson quickly declined.

With Denver on the hook for his contract, it could make him a more affordable option than other quarterback options on the market, like Minnesota’s Kirk Cousins, though it’s still unclear what kind of market value Wilson will possess. Turning 36 in November with his best days behind him, Russell Wilson isn’t a long-term option but a short-term bridge to a team’s future franchise quarterback.

Throughout the offseason, Pittsburgh’s remained confident in Kenny Pickett with the hope of re-signing Mason Rudolph and having the two compete in training camp. Aside from media speculation, there’s been little chatter of the team taking a big swing at quarterback. But Wilson wouldn’t cost draft picks and wouldn’t be as pricey as other names available. Justin Fields has been most often connected to Pittsburgh, but Johnson believes he’ll land with his hometown Atlanta Falcons.

The sooner these destinations are determined, the better, and the quicker attention can turn to the Steelers’ actual quarterback plan as opposed to their perceived one. Hopefully within a month, we’ll know who is playing where. And if that little birdie was singing the right tune.

 

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