When the Pittsburgh Steelers selected Josh Dobbs from the University of Tennessee in the 4th round of the 2017 NFL Draft, there were plenty of skeptics questioning the pick. Analysts and fans alike criticized the pick, and wondered why it was even made.
“Dobbs relies too much on his legs to be a successful NFL quarterback.”
“Why take a quarterback in the 4th round who clearly isn’t the future of the position?”
“Dobbs is a project at best...no guarantee he can even beat out Landry Jones.”
You get the picture, and while the Steelers have already started their work towards getting Dobbs, and the rest of the 90-man offseason roster, ready for the 2017 season, an anonymous NFL General Manager didn’t have very kind words regarding Dobbs and his draft position.
In Matt Miller’s Scouting Report on BleacherReport.com, he quoted an NFL GM who was referring to both Dobbs and former Pitt quarterback Nate Peterman when he said the following:
Former Tennessee quarterback Josh Dobbs generated a ton of hype leading up to the draft, but he was ultimately selected in the fourth round. Pitt passer Nate Peterman also created a stir at the Senior Bowl and garnered some top-50 talk before falling to the fifth-round. What does this mean? As one general manager told B/R: "It means trust the tape. Neither of those guys was any good on Saturday. We're smarter than you guys give us credit for."
Not exactly a glowing endorsement, but it all comes down to expectations.
Do the Steelers expect Dobbs to be the heir to the quarterback throne after Ben Roethlisberger retires? That is highly doubtful. The team likely wants Dobbs to help fill out the quarterback depth chart, push Landry Jones and be a solid backup who can step in and win games if called upon.
If Dobbs becomes more than that, think Dak Prescott in 2016 with the Dallas Cowboys, then that is icing on the proverbial cake; however, the Steelers can’t have those lofty expectations attached to Dobbs right out of the gate.
In regards to the direct quote from the anonymous NFL GM, it isn’t a false statement. Dobbs’ film throughout his time with the Volunteers is extremely erratic and inconsistent. He did show signs of improvement his senior season, but he still has plenty to prove before he cements his spot not only on the team’s roster, but also as a potential quarterback of the future for the black and gold.
Nonetheless, the Steelers put their faith in Dobbs, and now it is up to the coaches, and Dobbs himself, to get the most out of the dynamic quarterback.