clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Josh Scobee and Brandon Boykin should not tarnish the Pittsburgh Steelers front office

The Pittsburgh Steelers made two moves in 2015 which backfired, one way or another, but hindsight is always 20/20.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

There is a saying I absolutely love, yet very few actually follow.

"Hindsight is always 20/20."

This saying applies to so many different aspects of life, and that can even include your favorite football team. I love it when some media and fans will blast Mike Tomlin, Todd Haley or Keith Butler for a decision made in the game. You see things like this on social media.

"Are you kidding me? Fire all of these clowns...they suck."

"Tomlin needs to go to clock management school. He is horrendous."

"A blitz there? Why in the world would you blitz on 3rd and long?! Just make a stop!"

I could go on, but you hopefully get my point of emphasis. In the sport of football, sometimes decisions have to be made which look like very logical and educated decisions, but that doesn't mean they always work out. Let's take a look at two scenarios which fans might be upset over, following a game.

Scenario 1: Keith Butler sends a corner blitz on a 3rd and 17. The blitz is picked up and the offense converts a first down.

The element of surprise is something of note, but if Butler knew the blitz would result in a first down for the opposition, I'm sure he wouldn't have called the blitz. On the flip side, if the blitzer gets home to the quarterback, fans and media are applauding his aggressive style.

Hindsight is always 20/20.

Scenario 2: Todd Haley calls a draw on a crucial 3rd and 7. The play gains 5 yards and the Steelers are forced to punt.

Again, here is that element of surprise again. If Haley, and Ben Roethlisberger, see the defense in a pass heavy package, a draw could actually work in this situation. In fact, Peyton Manning has used this philosophy to be considered one of the greatest offensive minds of his time, but because it doesn't work...the decision sucks. If the play goes for a first down, fans and media applaud Haley for thinking outside the box, and making the tough call when it mattered most.

Hindsight is always 20/20.

In fact, these types of decisions go off the field too. In 2015, the team had two such decisions which didn't pan out in one way or another.

When Steelers kickers Shaun Suisham and Garrett Harley were both injured in the preseason, the team sent a 6th round draft pick to the Jacksonville Jaguars for veteran kicker Josh Scobee. I applauded the move at the time, and stand by the words I wrote which you could look up with a simple Google search.

Scobee was a reliable veteran kicker with a big leg, something the Steelers needed as they tried to march their way to their next Super Bowl championship. No one saw Scobee folding like a cheap lawn chair the way he did. Fans will blast the team, but do you think if they knew Scobee would miss all those field goals, and potentially cost the team wins against the New England Patriots and Baltimore Ravens, they would have given up a draft pick to bring Scobee in?

Hindsight is always 20/20.

Senquez Golson's shoulder injury put the Steelers in a bind in regards to their secondary depth. The team sent a conditional draft pick to the Philadelphia Eagles for Brandon Boykin. A soap opera ensued in regards to why Boykin never saw the field until the latter portion of the regular season.

Conspiracy theorists think it was all about the conditional draft pick, while others think he simply wasn't good enough. Either way, at the conclusion of the 2015 season Boykin was looking for a new home. Again, if the Steelers knew the situation would play out the way it did, would they have made the trade? I doubt it.

Hindsight is always 20/20.

A few days ago, Boykin's new team, the Carolina Panthers, released him unexpectedly after just two months on the job. To say all of Steelers Nation saw red flags popping up is an understatement. What might have gone mostly unnoticed in all that mess was the news of Scobee also being released by his new team, the New Orleans Saints, also after just two months on the job.

These transactions could certainly tarnish the Steelers in a way. After all, the team who gave away draft picks for these two players are now seeing them available on the open market the following season.

Is Boykin a locker room problem? Maybe, and it is possible the Steelers found this out the hard way. Scobee's career looks all but over, and his time in Pittsburgh could have been the impetus for his rapid decline. Either way, at the time of these transactions in 2015, there was no way of the Steelers knowing these trades would pan out the way they did. Sure, it is easy to point the finger at the those making the decisions and say, "Look. Look at what these players are traded draft picks for these guys?!", but if you remember the saying at the beginning of the article you'd realize these transactions shouldn't tarnish the team's front office.

Hindsight is always 20/20.