clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Pittsburgh Steelers Fact or Fiction: Preseason Week 1 Edition

BTSC takes five bold statements surrounding the current state of the team and labels them as Fact or Fiction.

NFL: Pittsburgh Steelers-Training Camp Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

With members of the Pittsburgh Steelers getting ready to do battle against Bruce Arians and his Tampa Bay Bucs on Friday at Heinz Field, the narrative of the ‘19 campaign continues with speculation and excitement galore. BTSC anticipates big storylines and issues bold statements regarding each one of them. Let’s take a look and deem them as fact or fiction.

Kevin Colbert’s one year at a time contract status is a bigger deal than most people think.


If the Steelers GM was truly dedicated to remaining in Pittsburgh long-term, he wouldn’t be keeping his options open and taking it one year at a time. Sure Colbert could retire, but he could do that without penalty while in the middle of a deal. Bill Cowher did, There have been whispers in the media of Colbert joining the Carolina Panthers under David Tepper’s ownership, but that could be just speculation. But nonetheless, the year-by-year plan seems suspect at this time.

With James Conner entrenched at the position, RB Bennie Snell Jr. won’t ever be a feature performer in the Steel City.


Snell has the makings and pedigree to start at running back in the NFL and it very well could be in the Steel City. James Conner is the clear-cut starter and injuries could be a factor in the Kentucky Wildcat possibly emerging. However, No. 30’s contract will be expiring at the same time as those of T.J. Watt and JuJu Smith-Schuster. In this day and age of the NFL, it might be really tough to retain the services of all three Pro Bowlers at the same juncture. If Benny Snell Football is a hit, No. 24 could benefit from that scenario.

Outside Linebacker and not Tight End is the chief depth concern in Pittsburgh.


I previously thought outside linebacker was the biggest concern in Pittsburgh, especially when TJ Watt went down early in the preseason. I previously thought outside linebacker was the biggest concern in Pittsburgh, especially when TJ Watt went down early in the preseason. However, Vance McDonald has not always been the most healthy of players. If something happens to No. 89, Xavier Grimble and unproven/unheralded Zach Gentry are the next men up and that doesn’t exactly seem promising. The depth behind T.J. Watt and Bud Dupree is not exactly awesome with the prospect of Anthony Chickillo maybe having to start in case of emergency. But Ola Adeniyi is impressing and some see him starting possibly in the future. I feel we need to see No. 92 do more than rush the passer before anointing him the next James Harrison.

Quarterback Devlin Hodges is not a long shot to make the Steelers.


This guy from Samford is the most prolific passer in FCS history after breaking Steve McNair’s 24-year all-time passing record last year. 14,566 yards through the air isn’t anything to sneeze at. A small-statured QB from a small school that runs a spread offense surely has a ton of obstacles to face. However, Hodges seems like he has the skills and the heart to overcome the odds. With questions surrounding Joshua Dobbs after last year’s Oakland debacle, Hodges will get the chance to impress in exhibition action.

Zach Banner shouldn’t be a forgotten man on the offensive line.


The 6’8”/360-pound OT from USC protected Sam Darnold at USC and may have seen less playing time last year after not spending a full camp in Pittsburgh last year. But the son of Lincoln Kennedy has impressed in camp and is now listed second to starter Matt Feiler at RT. He could be a contender on a deep line.

Will these statements identify more as, to quote Bill Murray as John Winger in Stripes, “That’s a fact...Jack!” or will they identify more with the Albert Camus quote “Fiction is the lie through which we tell the truth.”? What matters most is your opinions on the matter. Please state them in the comments below.