The hype train around the Steelers continues to pick up steam. More media members and pundits hop on board by the day after seeing Pittsburgh play in the preseason. A former NFL head coach is hopping on board with what the Steelers are showing in the preseason.
On First Take, former Chiefs head coach Herm Edwards discussed what the Steelers could bring. The play of Kenny Pickett and the offense make Edwards buy into what Pittsburgh is selling. But more than that, the return of T.J. Watt to total health and the jelling of the units overall gives him reasons for optimism.
“I really like the Pittsburgh Steelers,” Edwards said. “I wanted to see Pickett in the preseason, just how he was going to throw the football and play quarterback. But this is heading in the right direction, I mean they really are. The quarterback is playing well, and I understand its the preseason, but it matters. The preseason matters, these games do matter with your starters. How they play, and I don’t care who they play against, they’re playing against professional football players, matters. Watt’s back and that’s going to help them defensively. This team will challenge the Ravens and the Cincinnati Bengals to get a playoff spot. There might be three teams coming out of this division.”
Edwards goes lofty with the predictions that Pittsburgh can compete in the AFC North when most projections have them last. I tend to fall in the middle and believe the Steelers are solely in contention for a playoff spot, but likely as a wild card team. Pickett’s breakout, along with the young talent around him on the offensive side of the ball gives them some considerable upside. I still think the team is one year away from breaking through that ceiling and becoming a force to be reckoned with in the NFL. But they have plenty of signs going their way to prove they can hang with a lot of teams in the AFC and make it to the playoffs.