All Eyes on Quarterback Battle as Steelers Open Training Camp

All Eyes on Quarterback Battle as Steelers Open Training Camp

For the first time in 17 years, the Pittsburgh Steelers will have a new leader at quarterback as training camp opens for rookies and veterans Tuesday at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe.

The question is: Who will it be?

That decision will be watched closely in Pennsylvania gambling circles.

The Steelers were 9-7-1 last season and finished with a 42-21 wild-card playoff road loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. In that game, QB Ben Roethlisberger ended what surely will be a Hall of Fame career with 215 passing yards and two touchdowns.

So it’s no wonder that the future leader of the offense is the focus on Pennsylvania sports betting apps and the most-searched position battle by Steelers Nation heading into camp.

PennStakes.com utilized Google Trends to find the most searched position groups over the past 30 days. Positions with obvious starters were eliminated.

After determining the groups, PennStakes.com then utilized Google Trends to find how much each player in that position group is being searched over the past week.

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Steelers Most Searched Position Battles

  • Quarterback
  • Wide Receiver
  • Left Guard
     
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Pittsburgh Search Rankings for Steelers QBs

🏈 Kenny Pickett63%
🏈 Mitchell Trubisky34%
🏈 Mason Rudolph24%

 

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Breaking Down the Position Battles

One thing the Steelers do have at quarterback is depth. Former Chicago Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky, longtime Roethlisberger backup Mason Rudolph and this year’s first-round draft pick, Kenny Pickett from the University of Pittsburgh, all will battle it out to see who leads the offense.

Pittsburgh opens the season on the road against AFC North Division rival and last year’s Super Bowl runner-up, the Cincinnati Bengals, on Sept. 11.

Trubisky, 28, has the most experience of the three with 50 career starts and looks to be the front-runner for the job.

Rudolph has been with the Steelers for the past four years. His most productive season was 2019, when he started eight games, threw for 1,765 yards, 13 touchdowns and nine interceptions.

Pickett is the hometown college hero who brings a strong arm and the ability to run outside the pocket. He will round out a robust battle in camp among the three.

The new quarterback must throw to somebody. And the Steelers have, at least, the top two wideouts locked down with Chase Claypool and Diontae Johnson.

After that, the competition is wide open. 

Anthony Miller is back. He brought starting experience from Chicago when he signed to the Pittsburgh practice squad last season.

Miles Boykin came in free agency from Baltimore. Like Claypool, Boykin is a Notre Dame product. Gunner Olszewski was also picked up in free agency.

In the draft, the Steelers picked two wide receivers: George Pickens from Georgia (second round) and Calvin Austin III from Memphis (fourth round).

The left guard position battle will closely be watched as it is down to Kevin Dotson and Kendrick Green.

Dotson, 25, has played in 22 games (13 started) for the Steelers over the last two years.

Green, last year’s third-round draft pick from Illinois, played in most of the team’s offensive snaps until Week 15 last season and then did not play in the final two weeks due to an injury.

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How the Oddsmakers View Steelers


Here is the top 10 odds, plus where the Steelers fit in, according to BetMGM Sportsbook Pennsylvania.

                       
🏈 1. Buffalo Bills+600
🏈 2. Tampa Bay Bucs+750
🏈  3. KC Chiefs+900
🏈 4. LA Rams+1100
🏈  5. Green Bay Packers+1200
🏈  6. SF 49ers+1400
🏈  T7. Denver Broncos+1600
🏈 T7. LA Chargers+1600
🏈  T7. Dallas Cowboys+1600
🏈  T10. Baltimore Ravens+2000
🏈  T10. Cincinnati Bengals+2000
🏈  23. Pittsburgh Steelers+1200

It is odd to see the Steelers in the bottom third of the league. After all, they have the longest NFL streak of consecutive winning seasons at 17.

The loss of Roethlisberger to retirement has caused the perennial playoff power Steelers to move down the chain of favorites among current futures odds at BetMGM.

Pittsburgh is currently last among BetMGM bettors to capture the AFC North Division at +900. The favored Baltimore Ravens are at +150, the Super Bowl runner-up Cincinnati Bengals are close by at +185 and the Cleveland Browns, who still do not have a definitive decision on the availability of newly-acquired quarterback Deshaun Watson, are third at +300.

To win the AFC, the Steelers are +4000 and that number doubles to capture the Super Bowl at +8000. That places the Steelers 23rd among the NFL’s 32 teams.

BetRivers Pennsylvania sports app also has the Steelers at +8000 to win the Super Bowl.

The Steelers are at +3500 to win the AFC title. They are last in the AFC North but at better +700 odds, behind the Ravens (+165), Bengals (+190) and the Browns (+333).

Count on PennStakes.com for NFL coverage from now through the Super Bowl and beyond as well as for the top Pennsylvania sports betting promo codes.

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Author

Lou Monaco had been East Coast Scene columnist for Gaming Today in Las Vegas since June 2019, covering the East Coast sportsbook scene with emphasis on NJ and PA. He also currently is a part-time writer for the high school sports department for NJ Advanced Media (NJ.com) in Iselin, NJ. Lou has over 30 years sports experience with previous stints at ESPN SportsTicker, Daily Racing Form and Oddschecker.

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