National Football League
Is it Kenny Pickett's time in Pittsburgh?
National Football League

Is it Kenny Pickett's time in Pittsburgh?

Updated Aug. 21, 2022 5:22 p.m. ET

Rookie Kenny Pickett is set to receive more snaps in the Steelers' preseason game against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Saturday, as the competition for Pittsburgh's starting QB job continues.

Pickett, who has mostly taken snaps with the Steelers' second unit in practice, received first-team reps this week. Still, Mitchell Trubisky is set to get the starting nod over Pickett in Saturday's matchup, coach Mike Tomlin said Thursday.

"We simply want to see Kenny in more varsity action," Tomlin told reporters. "This is a big week for [Pickett] in terms of maybe getting in the first half of this game and I would imagine getting the opportunity to see frontline defenders for Jacksonville."

On Friday's "The Herd," Colin Cowherd explained why the opportune time to play Pickett is sooner than later.


"Mike Tomlin, I think he's seeing what everybody's seeing," Cowherd said. "Everybody in the world knows what Trubisky is. We've seen it — highs and lows. Everybody, all these years, in knows what Mason Rudolph is. We've seen it. The only quarterback [that] the Steelers have that we really don't know if it could be special — because Trubisky and Mason Rudolph are … capable, not special — is Kenny Pickett. 

"Why not play him against the Jags?"

"You know what Trubisky is [and] you know what Mason Rudolph is," Cowherd continued. "You don't know what Kenny Pickett is. When are you gonna find out? I'd find out in the next two games that don't count. Let me see something. Put him right up on the field with Trevor Lawrence, and let's see it. … At this point, a 24-year-old with four years starting, just won the ACC [championship] — what're you waiting for? We know what's in the room. He's the only guy [that] we don't know what we get."

Pickett — the No. 20 pick in the 2022 NFL Draft out of Pittsburgh — had a sparkling debut in the Steelers' first preseason game against the Seattle Seahawks. He finished the night with 95 passing yards and two touchdowns on 13-for-15 passing.

Pittsburgh finished last season 9-7-1, good for second in the AFC North, before losing in the wild-card round of the playoffs. That marked the Steelers' third loss in its first postseason game in the past four years. Pittsburgh has not won a playoff game since the 2016 season.


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