Steelers Rank 14th Overall In ESPN 2016 NFL Future Power Rankings


During this time of the offseason there isn\'t much meaningful news to discuss, unless you are a fan of the New England Patriots, so instead we will discuss the meaningless stuff such as the NFL Future Power Rankings that were posted Wednesday on ESPN.com.

So what do Steelers fans have to look forward to in 2016? According to the ESPN "experts," the Steelers rank 14th overall in their future rankings with a score of 65.71.

If you want to look at the methodology used by Herm Edwards, Mel Kiper, Mike Sando, Gary Horton, Matt Williamson and Field Yates for these, you can read about it here and watch the video below.

According to the Steelers individual category rankings, they score fine in the coaching (7.8) and front office (8.0) areas, but only slightly above average in the roster (5.5) and the quarterback (5.7) departments. Their draft score comes in at (6.8).

As far as what the Steelers roster will look like in 2016, it is no secret that current starters safety Troy Polamalu, safety Ryan Clark, defensive end Brett Keisel, cornerback Ike Taylor, linebacker Larry Foote and guard Ramon Foster will all be gone by then. As far as current veteran starters go that could possibly still be on the roster come 2016, quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will be 34, tight end Heath Miller will be 33, LaMarr Woodley will be 31 and Lawrence Timmons will be 30. Assuming the other four remaining offensive linemen are still on the team in 2016, Marcus Gilbert will be the oldest of the bunch at 28.

The Steelers are well on their way to getting younger; however, as linebacker James Harrison was released this past offseason and nose tackle Casey Hampton wasn\'t re-signed. As far as their safety depth goes, we assume that both Shamarko Thomas and Robert Golden will both be patrolling the deep part of the field by then with Cortez Allen manning one of the two cornerback spots. Replacements at the inside linebacker positions should be groomed by then as should at least one of the two defensive end positions.

Being as the Steelers are never really involved in free agency, the biggest question mark surrounding the 2016 version of the Steelers centers mostly around the drafts from 2013 and forward, but you can really say that about every team for that matter. Being as the offensive line and skill positions should still be in pretty good shape by then, assuming of course that wide receiver Markus Wheaton and running back LeVeon Bell pan out, the only remaining issue is the status of Roethlisberger, who more than likely will be extended next offseason.

When you look at each teams\' individual category scores, you can clearly see that the "experts" don\'t think that Roethlisberger will be able to do what he does right now come 2016.

Based on the Steelers history alone, a 14th overall ranking seems to be a little low, in my opinion. Now, I\'m not saying that they should be top five mind you, but when you consider that the Patriots are ranked fifth overall with quarterback Tom Brady going to be 39 years of age come the start of that season; the Steelers deserve a little more leeway with Roethlisberger. The Denver Broncos even have a quarterback score (6.5) higher than that of the Steelers and quarterback Peyton Manning will be 40 years of age in 2016.

So where do the other three teams in the AFC North rank? The Baltimore Ravens (82.42) are ranked 4th, the Cincinnati Bengals (66.25) are ranked just above the Steelers at 13th, and the Cleveland Browns (50.96) are ranked 27th overall.

As I mentioned in the opening paragraph, these rankings are meaningless and only serve as a topic of discussion during the lowest part of the offseason, but with that being reemphasized, are the Steelers fairly ranked in your opinion? If not, where would you rank them and why?

The Kansas City Chiefs ranked ahead of the Steelers? Really? One of you make a note to remind me about these rankings in three years.

RANK TEAM
1 San Francisco 49ers
2 Green Bay Packers
3 Seattle Seahawks
4 Baltimore Ravens
5 New England Patriots
6 Atlanta Falcons
7 New York Giants
8T St. Louis Rams
8T Indianapolis Colts
10 New Orleans Saints
11 Denver Broncos
12 Kansas City Chiefs
13 Cincinnati Bengals
14 Pittsburgh Steelers
15 Houston Texans
16 Washington Redskins
17 Philadelphia Eagles
18 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
19 Minnesota Vikings
20 Miami Dolphins
21 Detroit Lions
22 Chicago Bears
23 Carolina Panthers
24 Dallas Cowboys
25 San Diego Chargers
26 Arizona Cardinals
27 Cleveland Browns
28 Tennessee Titans
29 Buffalo Bills
30 Jacksonville Jaguars
31 Oakland Raiders
32 New York Jets

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About Dave Bryan

I am, I'm me. 40 something, retired and a life long Steelers fan.
  • steeltown

    noted

  • steeltown

    I can understand why they are ranked where they are, lets face it its the same perception every year. We have Troy and Heath Miller and Ike Taylor and so on and so on, BUT behind them we have nobody in the eyes across the League. Why?..because we groom our young guys so most cant really gauge the prospects. But when you think about it who’s to really say Cam Heyward wont be a stud, same could be said for Cortez Allen, Mike Adams or even guys like Will Johnson, A.Robinson or Golden…

    I’d like to see what the 2016 power rankings would look like after the 2013 season, because we will ALL know alittle bit more about guys like McLendon, C.Allen, Le’Veon Bell and other youngsters

  • 2443scott

    lets face it espn and nfl network are 2 of the places people go for sports news ….and if you watch both them enough you can see bias in there reporting and some times crazy perdictions ….as far as a topic lets say heaven forbit steelers end up 3-13 till 2016 which means the steelers have a lot more up board picks when draft rolls around and can stock pile 1st rounders like alot the teams been doing lately so that throws out where a team be in 2016 by then steelers could have record of 16-0 from all those higher draft picks i know rest league dont want to hear that …but even when steelers are #1 they still dont get no respect because they always stick in some reason why they are #1 …and because they rather want to talk about there teams they like more …lets face it reporters where fans way before they were reporters and it slands their judgements …so when they report or comment like here on a ranking of course they will lean more their fan mind set …..i dont really care about what they decide steelers ranking is lets face it how many times lately have a team come in superbowl as a wild card and won it bet neither one them were ranked number one ….bet espn didnt read the words on any given sunday and knew what they ment ..if sapp would of had a say bet we be ranked dead last …like that 100 nfl network had ben got dished once again by that ranking but when you put a mic in front of any players all you hear ben is dangerous and you cant get him down and they are not wanting to play him you dont hear that from peyton or brady .those 2 you get like can i get your autograph ….bens won 2 superbowls how many those qbs in front him did that …so any ranking thats made up is not really what happens on any given sunday ..would a team be willing to rank 10 or 20th and have won superbowl and some ranking system ranked them that low care ….but to look so far a head down road whats to say rest teams till we got to 2016 all lost there best guys and to retirement and steelers didnt loose them as much then steelers be number 1 …in my self rank steelers # 1 and raiders #2 and bengals #32 and browns 29th and ravens 28th and the beloved pats and packers #31 #30 does that make my ranking any better or worst ..

  • Jason

    The bottom line is none of these “experts” have the knowledge of the Steelers that any of us die hards do. Simply playing football and the getting handed a cushy studio job based on the fact that you played dosen’t qualify you to analyze teams much less predict power rankings 3 years from now. I for one love the fact that the talking heads seem to have written us off again. September can’t get here fast enough!

  • cencalsteeler

    Love flying under the radar! I’d rather be projected 14, than ranked 1 with all of those expectations. When it doesn’t pan out, your considered a bust. Good luck niners.

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