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Terrible Towel Tales: Kenny Pickett’s words don’t add up

Steelers news and commentary Tuesday, January 2nd

NFL: NOV 26 Steelers at Bengals Photo by Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Welcome to the Terrible Towel Tales, where we’ll highlight some of the latest stories permeating Steelers media for your reading pleasure every Monday through Saturday. In today’s news…

Kenny Pickett Denies Refusing to Be Steelers Backup | Alan Saunders, Steelers Now

Pickett said the plan coming into the week was that if he was healthy enough to play, he would start, and that if he was not healthy enough to play, he was not going to dress.

“I was going to start and play, or if they didn’t think I was good enough to do that, healthy enough, I was going to be the three,” Pickett said.

But head coach Mike Tomlin confirmed multiple reports on Monday that Pickett was medically cleared to play before the game, and Pickett did not end up being the No. 3. He ended up inactive, with the Steelers only having two quarterbacks available to them against the Seahawks.

There is no tactical team advantage to not dressing Pickett. The team cannot replace the emergency third quarterback with another player. Pickett hinted that the reason he was not dressed was a lack of enthusiasm for playing at a status that, while medically cleared, was less than 100%.

Steelers’ Mason Rudolph won’t be giving Kenny Pickett his job back | Rob Gregson, A to Z Sports

The Steelers have now won two games in a row and done so in tremendous fashion.

Resembling an actual offense in back-to-back weeks for the first time in a while, Pittsburgh has been firing on all cylinders the last two weeks.

But that may have come at the cost of Kenny Pickett’s job:

Steelers Won’t Comment on Offseason QB Plans | Nick Farabaugh, Steelers Now

The Steelers are focused on knocking off the Baltimore Ravens, and that means the short-term quarterback option is Mason Rudolph, who led Pittsburgh to two straight wins. But does that mean Kenny Pickett’s tenure as the franchise quarterback is over? Maybe, maybe not. Mike Tomlin would not get into those logistics before their Week 18 game.

“I’m just looking at where we are and what we need to do this week,” Tomlin said. “That’s probably more of an end of the year type analysis, man. And we’re on a short week and we’re trying to put together a formula to win this game.”