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PFF says Kenny Pickett is due for a breakout year in 2023

The Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback could be making a big sophomore jump in 2023.

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Cleveland Browns v Pittsburgh Steelers Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images

When it comes to media outlets who get a lot of flack from fan bases, Pro Football Focus (PFF) might top them all. Their subjective grading system is constantly debated, and ridiculed, and while it leads to attention, it is often for all the wrong reasons.

Nonetheless, it is typically a situation where if a player of your favorite team is given good grades, you love it. However, when they are graded poorly, you start to question just how their grading system works.

This is typical for all 32 NFL fan bases, including the Pittsburgh Steelers. So when PFF put out their 2023 All-Breakout Team, it got the Steelers fans’ attention.

Before going any further, this was how PFF went about this exercise:

In this piece, we’re going to look at a starting lineup of players who could be in line for a breakout season of their own. For this exercise, the personnel groupings will be 11 personnel (one running back, one tight end, three receivers) on offense and a nickel defense (four defensive linemen, two linebackers, five defensive backs) to reflect the way the modern NFL is played today.

Who was the quarterback selected for the All-Breakout team? Try Kenny Pickett.

Let’s see their reasoning...

2023 All-Breakout Team


His counting stats leave something to be desired, as Pickett finished his rookie year throwing for just 2,404 yards with only seven touchdowns and nine interceptions without a single multi-TD game. However, the Steelers’ late-season playoff push coincided directly with Pickett’s late-season improvement. Starting with Week 12, where he finished with an 88.5 offensive grade and an 86.3 passing grade, Pickett didn’t have a single game where his offense or passing grade dipped below 70 for the rest of the year (excluding a Week 14 matchup against Baltimore where he was knocked out early with a concussion). Pickett finished the season with a 75.5 offensive grade and 73.5 passing grade and with that late-season push, he could be primed for a big year in 2023.

Do you buy what PFF is selling? Do you foresee Pickett having a breakout season? Or will Matt Canada, or Pickett himself, limit his overall impact for the offense? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below, and be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the Steelers as they prepare for the rest of the 2023 NFL offseason.