Mitch Trubisky looks to make his first start as a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers this Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals on the road, having won the job during training camp over Mason Rudolph and rookie Kenny Pickett.
However, there has been plenty of speculation pertaining to how long Trubisky will remain the starter over Pickett should he struggle early in his Pittsburgh Steelers debut.
NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport made an appearance on NFL GameDay Morning to share what he has been hearing on the QB situation in Pittsburgh and how much of a leash Trubisky will be giving as the starting quarterback of the Pittsburgh Steelers.
“The question has always been raised, how long of a leash does the starting quarterback have?” Rapoport said on NFL GameDay Morning. “My understanding is not a short leash, but a long leash. Mike Tomlin does not want Mitch Trubisky looking over his shoulder, going three-and-out and going, ‘Ok wow, is Kenny Pickett coming in now’. It’s nothing like that. He came in as QB1. He’s exceeded expectations in an offense that fits him, and the players are feeling it too in the locker room. He is the captain, and they clearly believe that he is the starting quarterback as well.”
Rapoport’s comments match up with what HC Mike Tomlin has said throughout training camp and the preseason, telling his QBs to play loose and free and not fear that one mistake will make-or-break their chances of winning the starting job. Trubisky has been extremely grateful for Tomlin’s mindset toward the QB battle throughout training camp, comparing his experience in Pittsburgh to the one he had in Chicago where he felt micromanaged by former Bears HC Matt Nagy and the rest of the offensive coaching staff.
The Steelers and specifically Trubisky will be met with adversity early in the 2022 season, likely starting with the team’s first game against the Bengals this Sunday. There will be missed throws and turnovers will happen, but Trubisky doesn’t have to worry that one bad play will be the reason he loses the starting job. Tomlin and the Steelers organization don’t often make impulsive reactions to what happens in real-time, hence why they have been such a stable franchise the last few decades. Trubisky will benefit from the team’s trust in him and thus will have the opportunity to make good on his second chance as a starting NFL QB, playing with more confidence this time around than his previous stop in Chicago.