Steelers’ Mike Tomlin on quarterback race: ‘We’re not going to micromanage’

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Pittsburgh Steelers enter new territory without veteran quarterback Ben Roethlisberger at the helm this season, but longtime head coach Mike Tomlin isn’t about to “micromanage” his options just yet.

Mitchell Trubisky, Mason Rudolph, etc. Rookie Kenny Pickett are in the battle for a spot in the starting XI, but Tomlin said on Tuesday he wants to see how things play out organically before making a decision before the first week.

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett (8) takes part in a practice session with quarterback Mitchell Trubisky (10), Mason Rudolph (2) and Chris Oladokun (5) during team practice at the Steelers practice facility in Pittsburgh on May 25, 2022.

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett (8) takes part in a practice session with quarterback Mitchell Trubisky (10), Mason Rudolph (2) and Chris Oladokun (5) during team practice at the Steelers practice facility in Pittsburgh on May 25, 2022.
(Photo by Brandon Slaughter/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

“I’ll say this because it’s the elephant in the room: we’re not going to micromanage or overmanage this quarterback competition. The depth table will not rely on every roll,” he said.

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“We’re going to be a little more stable. I think it’s important in terms of leadership not to overdo it, not to be too impulsive, and that’s what I’ve passed on to these guys and our actions will continue. to show this mindset.”

Trubisky, who led the first-team during training camp this offseason, moved from the Chicago Bears to the Buffalo Bills last season, serving as a stand-in for Josh Allen.

Buffalo Bills quarterback Mitchell Trubisky runs with the ball during the second half of an NFL football game against the Houston Texans in Orchard Park, New York, Sunday, October 1.  3, 2021.

Buffalo Bills quarterback Mitchell Trubisky runs with the ball during the second half of an NFL football game against the Houston Texans in Orchard Park, New York, Sunday, October 1. 3, 2021.
(AP Photo/Adrian Kraus, file)

Rudolph has a bone backup for Steelers over the past three seasons with 10 career starts.

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As for Pickett, no. With the 20th overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, Tomlin likes what he has seen so far.

“I think when you’re 22, 23, 24 years old and you’ve been playing quarterback all your life, you understand these informal duties. [of leadership] it comes with attitude. I’m more concerned with tangible things like accuracy, taking care of the ball, that sort of thing,” Tomlin said of the former University of Pittsburgh quarterback.

Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin watches ahead of their game against the Kansas City Chiefs in the NFC Wild Card Playoffs at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri, January 1.  16, 2022.

Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin watches ahead of a game against the Kansas City Chiefs in the NFC Wild Card playoff game at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri, January 1. 16, 2022.
(David Yulitt/Getty Images)

“I’m not worried about these things being in his wheelhouse. I saw him do it in the neighborhood, in terms of leading his guys and what a quarterback should be. I don’t think it will be a meaningful discussion.”

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Pickett’s best season at Pitt was his fifth year, during which he threw for 4,319 passing yards and 42 touchdown passes, which dramatically increased his draft stock.

Ryan Gaidos of Fox News contributed to this report.