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All-Pro Lineman Roasts Kenny Pickett for Sack, ‘Not Doing His Job At All’

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Mitchell Schwartz knows a thing or two about blocking. And he has some thoughts about this seeming protection bust that left Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett on his back against the Colts.

Drafted by the Browns in the second round of the 2012 NFL draft, Schwartz went on to win a Super Bowl with the Chiefs in 2020. In addition, he was named an All-Pro four times in his career.

Again, Schwartz knows some stuff.

So when the Steelers left Colts defensive end Yannick Ngakoue “completely unblocked” in the first quarter of their Monday Night Football showdown, it was easy to blame the offensive line.

Heck, CBS Sports did:

But Schwartz didn’t.

Instead, Schwartz said that sack is all on the rookie quarterback Pickett.

He explains.

“Alright, let’s just discuss this play because people are continually blaming the offensive line,” Schwartz began. “It’s empty protection. The running back’s not in. You’ve got five offensive linemen to block six guys … The offensive line decides to slide right. You can see the center and the right guard are sliding right.

“What that means for the left side of the line is they have to take the most dangerous of the three guys on their side. Well, the two most dangerous are in the A and B gaps. You always let the widest guy go.”

This is where the important detail comes into play.

“So let’s please stop calling this an offensive line error,” Schwartz said. “It’s an error on the quarterback for not knowing that he’s hot, for not knowing that he needs to get the ball out of his hands, and for just not doing his job at all. But this was a great play by the left side of the offensive line –– and the entire offensive line in general.”

Pretty harsh from Schwartz there. To be fair, he did compliment Pickett in a prior tweet, saying, “I usually think he’s got a good sense of those things but that was a major whiff.”

Call it a rookie learning experience.

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