The Pittsburgh Steelers were stunned after taking a 48-37 loss to the Cleveland Browns on Sunday night after they started their season 11-0. The Steelers, who love to talk, gave extra ammunition to their division rivals in what was a stunning game straight out of the gate.
Ben Roethlisberger turned the ball over countless times against a stout Browns defense. The Steelers were playing almost as if the game had already been won and they were getting ready to host Baltimore the following week.
There’s no doubt the Steelers need to make some significant changes this offseason and there need to be some drastic ones if they hope to recover from this shocking defeat anytime soon. Whether it be shifting around some personnel or hiring some new coaches, the Steelers need to get it figured out and quickly.
The Steelers have some young pieces who shined this season, but there is still some work to be done.
Here’s a look at four changes the Steelers should make following their playoff loss to the Cleveland Browns.
Number One: New Quarterback
The Steelers need to find a new quarterback to take the reigns in 2021, because Big Ben Roethlisberger just isn’t cutting it anymore. Roethlisberger, 38, threw four interceptions in Sunday’s loss and should just hang up the cleats.
There comes a point in time where everyone just kind of knows when it’s time for something to end. That’s how it felt Sunday night watching Roethlisberger play and practically throw their game away against the Browns. It’s time for Big Ben to face the fact that he needs to hang up the cleats and settle down.
The Steelers do have the luxury of having one of the best quarterback drafts in the past decade to find some talent in or there is a slew of talent that will be available this offseason at the quarterback position as well. Some options the Steelers could consider are Matthew Stafford, Deshaun Watson, Mac Jones, or Jameis Winston. All I know is that Big Ben isn’t cutting it anymore.
Number Two: Let JuJu Walk
One of the first things the Steelers should do this offseason is let their wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster walk in free agency. Smith-Schuster, 24, has done more to hurt the Steelers and their credibility in 2020 than to help them, which is why he shouldn’t be pursued by the Steelers this offseason.
JuJu Smith-Schuster has given opponents bulletin board material all season long whether it be dancing on opposing team’s logos, on the field cheap shots, or disrespectful quotes. His presence on the field has been good, but he has ruined the Steelers’ credibility of being a tough gritty football team and is instead the Los Angeles of the NFL.
JuJu hauled in 97 receptions for 831 receiving yards and nine touchdowns in 2020, but could find himself on a different team next season following his on field antics.
Number Three: Tomlin Needs to Discipline
Mike Tomlin needs to stop trying to be a super player friendly coach all the time and establish some sort of discipline in his locker room. We’ve seen so much drama come out of Pittsburgh over the past few seasons that all fingers have to be pointed to Mike Tomlin at this point.
Everyone thought that once Antonio Brown left Pittsburgh everything was going to be fine, but that has not been the case at all. Actually, Brown has seemed to have matured under a much more diplomatic head coach in Bruce Arians and Steelers players have been the laughing stock of the NFL.
JuJu Smith-Schuster seems to give opponents bulletin board material on a weekly basis and rookie Chase Claypool has started to do the same thing. Tomlin needs to get a firm grasp on his players before they start to get bullied every week due to what his players post on social media.
Number Four: Find Wide Receivers Who Can Catch
Aside from JuJu Smith-Schuster and Chase Claypool, the other wide receivers on the Steelers struggle catching passes as the team led the NFL in dropped passes in 2020.
The good news for the Steelers, however, is that there are plenty of talented wide receivers on the market this year. The Steelers could go with some big names on the market this year with AJ Green, TY Hilton, Chris Godwin, and Sammy Watkins all set to hit free agency to name a few.
If the Steelers can correct some things on the offensive side of the ball, they could get right back where they left off. The Steelers certainly have the stepping stones to be a top tier organization, they just need to fine tune some sections.