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Former Steelers OL Thinks Kenny Pickett Should Request a Trade



Steelers Kenny Pickett
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett in a game against the Baltimore Ravens on Jan. 6, 2024. -- Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Omar Khan stated at the NFL Combine that he has “full faith” in Kenny Pickett being the team’s starting quarterback. Well, Khan must have been bluffing, as the team brought in former Denver Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson in for a visit on the South Side Friday.

Former Steelers guard Ramon Foster thinks Pickett has to be livid over the team expressing interest in Wilson, as they’ve continuously stated that he’s their starter. The Steelers’ brass mentioned bringing in competition, but a big name like Wilson probably caught Pickett off guard.

After being basically benched for Mason Rudolph late last year and bringing in Wilson for a visit, Foster thinks Pickett should request a trade.

“Kenny’s under fire because he was outperformed by Mason and then you got the Russ conversation happening. If I’m Kenny, I’ll be honest with you, I’ll be a little livid behind this because you told me I was the guy. It’s a situation where you don’t believe what they say you believe what they do. I’m hot. It becomes very problematic and sticky for Kenny and if I’m Kenny, because he can command it before it gets super bad, I’d probably be talking to my agent like, ‘Can we find a way out somewhere?'” Foster said on the Arthur Moats Experience podcast.

Foster thinks if the Steelers sign Wilson, he’ll be the starter for sure. Wilson had a 26-8 touchdown-interception ratio and a 98.0 passer rating last season. Kenny Pickett threw six touchdowns compared to four interceptions and had a 81.4 passer rating in 2023. Even though Wilson isn’t the same player that he once was in Seattle, he’s still a better option than Pickett. 

“How I feel about Kenny is this, in his two years as a starter in Pittsburgh we have yet to see a game from him the way we’ve seen from Mason Rudolph in those last few weeks,” Foster said. “I know you’ll say he’s got comeback games, yes he does, but over the course of a game has he commanded? Has he stayed in the pocket? Has he delivered? Has he had his wide receiver saying, ‘Man I like him?’ In the NFL, you’re either getting better or you’re getting worse when it comes down to that position.”

Pickett reportedly did not want to dress as the team’s third quarterback against the Seattle Seahawks this past season. Pickett denied that was the case, however.  Nevertheless, it was a tumultuous season for Pickett in 2023, as several injuries and the Matt Canada debacle hindered his development.

Pickett is only heading into his third year, so I don’t know how much weight he has to pull to demand a trade from the Steelers front office, but it could be on the table. The Steelers could get some decent draft capital for Pickett, also. For what it’s worth, Broncos insider Benjamin Allbright ironically threw the idea out there that Denver could possibly be a landing spot via a trade for Pickett if Wilson signs with the Steelers.