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‘He Got Flustered’: Former NFL HC Blasts Kenny Pickett



Steelers Kenny Pickett Preseason
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett and offensive line, Aug. 19, 2023. -- Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

Kenny Pickett and the Steelers came out flat against the San Francisco 49ers. They can not be happy with that performance. One former NFL head coach dove into the performance from Pickett and believed that he panicked once met by the pass rush of the 49ers.

Former Rams head coach Mike Martz broke down what Pickett did in the game for the 33rd Football Team, and his comments are, obviously, not glowing. He believes the 49ers threw him off his game and forced Pickett to make uncharacteristic throws right out of the gate.

“I think the 49ers defense intimidated him a little bit,” Martz said. “He was off with his accuracy, way off, which is not who he is. But he wanted to hold the ball and push the ball down the field. There were a number of times, I can think of three or four, where he just stood in there and got the ball to the crosser or the guy underneath for an 8 or 10-yard gain but he was trying to throw it where he has no business downfield. Too many picks, it was disastrous. He got flustered and tried to make it up, and that’s what happened. The inexperience and ego of it, you can’t do that. To play that position, you have to have a discipline there, and he lost it early.”

That is a ringing indictment on Kenny Pickett and how he played, but none of it is wrong. The accuracy that you can usually count on with Pickett faded. He overthrew guys, looked wild around the field, and could not play in structure. With his progressions, Pickett would drop his eyes if he ended up shunned from the pocket. He missed multiple open players for potential big plays. The mental side of his game, which looked sharper in the preseason, faded away. There was no excellent, calm, collected side of him today. His eyes were rolling around, and Pickett never settled into his game.

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