The Pittsburgh Steelers have faced significant challenges when superstar edge rusher TJ Watt is absent from the field, boasting a discouraging 1-11 record under such circumstances.
However, as the team gears up for offseason changes, one analyst has proposed an unconventional idea – trading the All-Pro talent as part of their transformation.
Ron Cook, a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette columnist, aired his opinion during a segment on 93.7 The Fan, suggesting that the Steelers should explore the possibility of trading Watt in the upcoming offseason to bolster their overall roster.
“If you don’t look at them as a legit Super Bowl contender right now, and I don’t, I would consider trading T.J. Watt. I don’t think they will because I think they always look at themselves as a Super Bowl contender even though they haven’t won a playoff game in seven years. But would it be outrageous to consider that possibility?”
Historically, the Steelers have maintained a self-image as perennial Super Bowl contenders. This year, despite entering the playoffs with significant uncertainties surrounding their quarterback position and the mid-season dismissal of their offensive coordinator, they seem resolute in elevating their expectations for the upcoming season. The aim is to address these key issues during the offseason and raise the bar even higher.
TJ Watt, a defensive force to be reckoned with, remains under contract until the conclusion of the 2025 season. His stellar performance has earned him an impressive fourth First-Team All-Pro selection and thrust him into the conversation for Defensive Player of the Year.
In the recently concluded season, Watt led the league in sacks with a staggering 19, while his stat line included 68 tackles, 19 tackles for loss, 36 quarterback hits, four forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries, eight pass deflections, an interception, and a memorable defensive touchdown.
It is important to note that contemplating the trade of T.J. Watt would be a monumental decision for the Steelers. They must weigh the potential gains against the backdrop of their aspirations to become genuine championship contenders.
Ultimately, the verdict on Watt’s future with the team will depend on whether they perceive themselves as being just a couple of key additions away from achieving that coveted status.
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