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Steelers Sign Kenny Pickett to Rookie Contract

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Steelers QB Kenny Pickett

The Pittsburgh Steelers and quarterback Kenny Pickett have agreed to terms to sign a four-year rookie contract, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Pickett was selected No. 20 overall in the first round of the 2022 NFL Draft, becoming the first quarterback selected and only signal caller to hear his name called in the first 73 picks.

Spotrac projects the total value of the deal to be over $14 million ($14,067904) with a signing bonus over $7 million ($7,411,204). Pickett holds a base salary of $705,000 in 2022 and a $2,557,801 cap hit.

Pickett finished third in voting for the Heisman Trophy after a historic final season at the University of Pittsburgh. 

He recorded career-highs in completion percentage (67.2), yards (4,319), yards per attempt (8.7), and touchdowns (42) in 13 games. 

He is also the all-time leading passer at Pitt with 12,303 yards thrown, touchdowns responsible for with 102, 81 passing touchdowns, and is the winningest quarterback in program history winning 32 games. 

The Panthers won the ACC in 2021 guided by Pickett and birthed one of the season’s most memorable moments with the “fake slide” against Wake Forest now being illegal.

Pickett, 24, returned to Pitt for a fifth-year to boost his draft stock and take advantage of an extra season of eligibility granted by the NCAA due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The 6-foot-3, 220-pound quarterback’s 8 ½ inch hand measurements at the combine was not detrimental to head coach Mike Tomlin and now former general manager Kevin Colbert, selecting Pickett as the only quarterback taken in the first round.

Pickett will compete with free-agent signing Mitch Trubisky along with Mason Rudolph for the starting job against Cincinnati Bengals on Sept. 11. He was the No. 3 quarterback throughout the spring workouts.

The Steelers have now signed all seven members of their 2022 draft class, Pickett, George Pickens, DeMarvin Leal, Calvin Austin III, Connor Heyward, Mark Robinson, and Chris Oladokun.

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