There’s always so much to talk about when it comes to the Pittsburgh Steelers. But the inquiries surrounding the black and gold are definitely ever-evolving, especially this week with one star edge rusher possibly spurning the Steelers’ advances, another accepting an invitation to the Steel City, Vince Williams’ sudden retirement and the start of Training Camp 2021. It seems like the musical selection that best fits this week’s Fact or Fiction could be Live’s Lightning Crashes.
Here’s a sample...
A new mother cries
Her placenta falls to the floor
The angel opens her eyes
The confusion sets in
Before the doctor can even close the door
An old mother dies
Her intentions fall to the floor
The angel closes her eyes
The confusion that was hers
Belongs now, to the baby down the hall
Oh, now feel it coming back again
Like a rolling thunder chasing the wind
Forces pulling from the center of the Earth again
I can feel it
You can ponder the significance or wonder whether these lyrics are really related here. Or maybe I just wanted an excuse to listen to some 90’s Alt Rock. But anyhow, there is surely a lot to wonder about. BTSC tries to answer some of the poignant wonderings ahead of time. Take a listen to some bold statements on this and more as we label them as fact or fiction.
Are we on point? Only time will tell.
Vince Williams’ retirement is bad timing for the Steelers
Typically a starter retiring right before the start of training camp would be most inopportune. However, Vince Williams’ sudden departure is lessened due to the presence of Robert Spillane. “Mick” started a majority of the 2020 season for Devin Bush and was expected to battle Williams for the RILB spot. While not having the great VinnyVidiVici in Pittsburgh anymore is depressing, solace could be taken with No. 41 jumping in.
T.J. Watt’s contract status is something to be concerned about
Steelers coach Mike Tomlin on signing pass rusher TJ Watt to a new contract: “I’m sure that process will run its course and we’ll have something to announce.” That’s typically a stock answer and it’s one that Coach T did utter when talking about Lev Bell years ago. But Bell had a much different level of dedication. Watt seems dedicated to being a lifelong Steeler and the team allegedly sees him as a foundation player. So Tomlin is right. The process will run its course, we just have to wait for it patiently.
Benny Snell Jr. is as good as gone to the Los Angeles Rams
When Cam Akers went down with a devastating injury last week, there was a lot of thought that the Steelers could ship Benny Snell to Los Angeles due to their depth at the running back position. BSJ could be the odd-man out in Pittsburgh now that Najee Harris and Anthony McFarland Jr. are expected to be featured more in Matt Canada’s offense. Cam Akers’ absence looms large in Los Angeles, but Darrell Henderson had more yards-per-carry and rushing touchdowns with less carries than Akers in 2020. With the presence of Henderson, the Rams may not need to spend draft capital on an extra back right away. It could happen, but I expect Snell to finish camp in Pittsburgh.
The Steelers 2021 depth chart is not indicative of who the Week One starters will be
The first depth charts of the year are typically known commodities and veteran-laden. Look at the center position as a prime example. J.C. Hassenhauer is listed as the initial starter, but rookie Kendrick Green is the man in waiting. If the Illinois third rounder is impressive in camp, he will seize the top spot. Teams usually make the younger players earn it and not just hand them the job. A contradiction to my point is Najee Harris though. He was drafted to be inserted right away and needs to get top priority and seasoning.
Trai Turner and Melvin Ingram are merely one-year rentals
Wow, the Steelers really love former Chargers players, At $4 million and $3 million respectively, Ingram and Turner only have one-year deals. These are window and audition contracts, If the Steelers end up liking said “Bolt Buddies”, they could be offered a new deal. Should the new Steelers enjoy their time in the Burgh, they may opt to stay as well in 2022.
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