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2024 NFL Draft

Steelers Land Fast Rising QB in New Mock Draft

The Pittsburgh Steelers are becoming a landing spot that is popular for Washington’s Michael Penix.



Pittsburgh Steelers Michael Penix

The Pittsburgh Steelers could look to add a quarterback in the NFL Draft, but one in the first round? It seems quite unlikely. With guys like Bo Nix and Michael Penix all over the board at this point, some have him falling to the third round, while others think quarterback-desperate teams will push their stock up and maybe even into the first round.

However, the Ringer believes that the Steelers could become that quarterback-needy team that reaches for someone. In their latest mock draft, the team picks Penix with their first-round pick.

“The Steelers have publicly stated their support for Kenny Pickett, but there just isn’t much evidence that Pickett is the answer for this team. Penix will be a polarizing figure in this draft, and some will view this as a reach, but the former Washington star brings a quick, decisive style and an aggressive mentality to push the ball downfield to create explosive plays—variables that differentiate him from what the team has gotten with Pickett. This is a bet that Penix can unlock the team’s playmakers and get this offense out of its rut,” they wrote.

Bruce Arians, who was the Steelers offensive coordinator at one point and is now a Super Bowl winning coach, believes that Penix is a hidden gem in the class.

“As far as the football grade, I love (Penix) because he does things I love to do,” Arians told the Tampa Bay Times. “He puts (the ball) up the field. He’s as accurate on throws up the field as anyone I’ve seen in 15 years Just to fight through that last game after he had that ankle tore up. But what he did to Texas was unbelievable.”

Penix’s Sugar Bowl game is one that everyone should point to if they want the Steelers to land him.

He completed 28 of 36 attempts for 430 yards and two touchdowns against them, showing off his best traits. Penix has an identity as a guy who can run a little hot and cold at times, but there is no doubt he was on in this game.

His vertical passing ability stuck out as he made tight window throws downfield all game. The most impressive part of his game? His pocket movement. Penix’s calm movements allowed him to distribute the ball to his excellent playmakers efficiently. It could easily boost his draft stock sharply, though some questionable medicals will arise. But his vertical passing with George Pickens could become a real weapon if that’s the route Pittsburgh wants to go.