The 2023 NFL league year is officially underway, and although isn’t even a week old there is a portion of most fan bases who are prepared to start hitting the panic button based on what their favorite team did, or didn’t do, during the first wave of free agency.
If I’m being honest, I understand how people can jump to conclusions as it pertains to the Pittsburgh Steelers. While the team made several acquisitions, there were also departures which have fans wondering what the future will hold for the black-and-gold.
I can only speak for myself, but the unknown which is the incomplete 2023 Steelers roster, is exciting. I love watching the process take shape, and for all those fans who are about to suggest the season is over months before it even begins, understand the process is far from over.
Not only will the Steelers continue to make moves throughout free agency, they still have to prepare for the 2023 NFL Draft and their three picks in the Top 50. While there might be other teams who have spent more money on big-name players, the Steelers are a team who shows patience and leaves fans wondering what will happen next.
That unknown is something many fans can’t stand. However, if you embrace the unknown it can be both exciting and exhilarating.
Think about the additions the Steelers have made thus far this free agency:
CB Patrick Peterson
Yes, Peterson is over 30, but what if Peterson’s job is not just to get the very last bit out of him the team can, but to also prepare the next cornerback(s) the team brings in? What if his presence just for two seasons can set up the Steelers for long-term success at the position by having a Hall of Fame caliber player in the room on a day-in and day-out basis?
OG Nate Herbig
The man they call “Nasty Nate” certainly is excited to be in the 412 area code. Herbig said he would play punter on the team if coach asked him to when speaking to the media this past week. The two-year deal for Herbig puts the offensive line in a good spot heading into 2023. It gives them experienced depth on the interior, and lessens their need/reliance on using Kendrick Green for anything other than an inactive designation.
LB Cole Holcomb
The former Washington Commanders green-dot wearing linebacker is known for his hard-hitting, relentless style of play. Unlike Myles Jack a year before him, Holcomb embraces the green-dot and the hope is he is bringing a new intensity to a position where the Steelers could definitely use it.
LB Elandon Roberts
Some call him undersized, but what if Roberts was brought in to do some of the things Devin Bush was supposed to do before his knee injury? Roberts might not be the most athletic player on the planet, but he also isn’t hesitant when playing. The Steelers have something up their sleeves with this linebacker duo.
When you consider the players added from the outside, you have to wonder what the Steelers have in store for their defense. They look as if they are wanting to be more physical and less about the athleticism they once craved after Ryan Shazier’s injury. But, again, no one really knows what lies ahead.
Will they sign Terrell Edmunds?
Will they bring in a wide receiver?
How about Zach Gentry?
The unknown strikes again, as it always does, but it doesn’t mean it is bad. In fact, it often can be exhilarating if you embrace it. I choose to embrace it and enjoy the ride.
(Note: The Letter From the Editor article runs every Sunday during the Pittsburgh Steelers offseason.)