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Big Ken: Steelers Debut Nickname for Kenny Pickett



Kenny Pickett drops back to pass as the Steelers face the Ravens on Jan. 1, 2022 in Baltimore. (Mitchell Northam / Steelers Now)
Kenny Pickett drops back to pass as the Steelers face the Ravens on Jan. 1, 2023B in Baltimore. (Mitchell Northam / Steelers Now)

Most NFL quarterbacks end up earning a nickname. For Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett, one has not risen to prominence outside the often-used ‘KP’ moniker for his initials. However, there could be a new nickname for Pickett within the Steelers locker room.

Appearing on Good Morning FootballCam Heyward broke down the 49ers and Steelers matchup. At one point, they got to talk about Pickett, and that is when Heyward revealed that some players in the locker room refer to Pickett as “Big Ken.”

“Oh, Kenny, we call him Big Ken,” Heyward said. “He’s just growing at his position. I feel like last year was just the tip of the iceberg.”

That nickname is an obvious play on Ben Roethlisberger’s nickname, Big Ben. Pickett did bulk up this offseason and put on some muscle. However, the reason that Roethlisberger earned that nickname was not just due to his stature but because of how hard it was for defenders to bring him down in the backfield.

After slimming down for the combine before last season and playing at around 213 pounds, Pickett is currently sitting around 226 pounds. Pickett’s weight gain did not come out of nowhere, as he mentioned earlier in the year that plans were in place to put on some mass in the offseason.

Kenny Pickett will look to make that second-year leap that quarterbacks must take to be considered franchise quarterbacks. With some extra size and strength, Pickett may be able to avoid some of the injuries that plagued his rookie campaign. Pickett suffered two concussions in 2022. That is one of the biggest concerns for Pittsburgh this season and part of why they brought in new faces on the offensive line. Still, four out of five starting linemen will return, with Isaac Seumalo has the team’s big upgrade at left guard.