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Daily Links: Primetime Pickett, Steelers Pretenders?



Steelers QB Kenny Pickett
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett against the Tennessee Titans on Nov. 2, 2023. -- Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

Former Pittsburgh Steelers free safety Ryan Clark thinks the Steelers are not built to beat the elite teams in the AFC.

“I don’t like the fact though that because Diontae (Johnson’s) back now George Pickens is not involved. I did enjoy the fact that okay now we’re running the football Najee Harris being the powerful (and) explosive physical runner that we need. Jaylen Warren with the big move late in the game to get the football to the 1-yard line, but this is the team that we’re gonna have to be excited about overcoming obstacles and adversities to beat the Tennessee Titans?” Clark said on ESPN’s First Take. “How does that team beat the Miami Dolphins? How does that team beat the Cincinnati Bengals, the Baltimore Ravens, the Kansas City Chiefs? How does that team beat the Buffalo Bills? They don’t.”

Clark even went as far as calling the Steelers imposters.

“They’re pretenders and they’re pretenders in the worst way,” Clark said. “They’re imposters. They aren’t a team that can win a championship. This isn’t a team that could get to a conference championship. When you look at what you saw on (Thursday night), it’s the way the Steelers win football games if you allow them to stay close. They have a coach who has preached belief. A coach who has preached situational football, and they find ways to make plays late.”

🏈 Stephen A. Smith also believes the Steelers are pretenders as of right now.

“Listen, I don’t want to be disrespectful because I’m very appreciative of what I’m seeing from them. They rushed for 166 yards (on Thursday night). Jaylen Warren and Najee Harris. I’m proud of what I saw from them last night. I believe in these brothers. I believe in Diontae Johnson. I believe in Pickens. I believe in their wide receivers, but I’m sorry it’s Kenny Pickett that I got questions about. It’s their offense overall led by Matt Canada I’ve got questions about and this is why I’m gonna sit up there and say for the moment they’re pretenders.”

🏈 ESPN’s Dan Graziano praised Mike Tomlin for the Steelers’ recent success. Despite not having an explosive offense, the Steelers are 12-5 since last year’s bye week.

“It’s a magic trick. … Mike Tomlin is a Hall of Fame coach. If ever the Steelers got tired of him, teams would fire their coaches to line up to try to hire him,” Graziano said.

🏈 Steelers right guard James Daniels allowed no sacks or pressures in 30 pass-blocking snaps in Thursday night’s win over the Tennessee Titans, according to Pro Football Focus.

🏈 Colin Cowherd of FS1 thinks rookie Will Levis looked more impressive than Kenny Pickett on Thursday night.

“You can see when they play. Levis has a significantly better arm. He’s bigger, stronger, thicker. Plays with more confidence. Easier thrower. Kenny Pickett doesn’t have a lot of special,” Cowherd said.

🏈 Kenny Pickett is 6-1 in primetime games. He’s 6-7 in is other career starts.

After Thursday night’s win, Kenny Pickett now has four career game-winning touchdown passes in the last 5 minutes of regulation with his team trailing. That’s the most by any quarterback over his first two seasons in NFL history.

🎂 Happy Birthday to former Steelers wide receiver Ryan Switzer, born on November 4, 1994 in Charleston, West Virginia.

🎥 NFL Network analyst Brian Baldinger broke down Broderick Jones’ impressive performance at right tackle against the Titans. “(Broderick Jones) had a great debut at RT. Hard to find a negative play and big part for a run game that popped,” Baldinger said.



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