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Cowher Worried Steelers Are ‘Destroying’ Pickett’s Confidence




Bill Cowher sees the Pittsburgh Steelers’ handling of rookie quarterback Kenny Pickett.

And he is concerned.

Speaking on the NFL on CBS postgame show, the former Steelers head coach and Hall of Famer went all in.

“You’re transitioning into a new quarterback, OK?” Cowher began. “Right now, I get worried about his confidence. Because I’ve seen this happen to other quarterbacks.”

Cowher wasn’t done there.

“Take the ball out of his hands,” he continued. “Don’t ask him to do as much as you’re asking him to do. I know we have these receivers and everything else. It’s not about the receivers. It’s about a philosophy on offense that says, ‘Listen. What’s the best part of your team?’

“It’s going to be your defensive side but that gets worn down after a period of time. There’s no margin for error there.”

Indeed, Pickett felt the heat Sunday against the Eagles.

The Steelers lost, 35-13, but it was a particularly brutal day for the young quarterback Pickett.

He got sacked six times, fumbled once, and threw an interception.

Through five games and four starts, Pickett flashes potential but ultimately shows more rookie struggles than anything. It hasn’t been pretty.

Pickett’s thrown for 962 yards with two touchdowns against eight interceptions for a QB rating of 66.8.

Sunday against the Eagles, Pickett posted zero touchdowns. Wide receiver Chase Claypool threw the team’s only score through the air on a nice bit of trickery at the goal line.

Cowher hates what he sees.

“You have to somehow shorten the game with this quarterback, and it goes back to running the ball,” Cowher said. “I’d put him back under center. Don’t subject him to being back there and getting sacked six times today.”

It’s a good idea from Cowher, but the Steelers haven’t exactly proven to be able to run the ball, either. Najee Harris is clearly working through a sophomore slump, while Jaylen Warren flashes here and there but hasn’t shown any ability to be the guy either.

Combined, they’re good for just 87.9 rushing yards per game, 27th in the NFL. The duo rushed 14 times for 82 yards Sunday against the Eagles, with a large chunk of that yardage coming from Warren after the game was long out of reach.

But Cowher understands this Steelers’ future isn’t about Harris and Warren.

It’s about No. 8: Kenny Pickett.

“I just, again. The same thing again,” Cowher said. “You’re 2-6. Understand it’s a period of transition. What’s in the best interest of developing this quarterback who is your quarterback of the future without destroying his confidence?”

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