Sam Monson of Pro Football Focus recently ranked the current starting lineups of all 32 NFL teams for an ESPN Insider piece and the Pittsburgh Steelers come in 27th overall on the list.
Once held up as a shining example to the rest of the league for how to run a franchise, the Steelers have allowed their roster to be eroded talent-wise for several years now, and are clinging onto being in contention for playoff spots at the end of the season largely thanks to having a top-quality quarterback and little else.
The team simply has not drafted well, failing to replace key personnel when they needed to, and then persisting with struggling players long past the point they should have given up on them. Ike Taylor is still used as if he were a shutdown corner, shadowing an opponent’s best receiver despite surrendering six touchdowns in 2013 and a passer rating into his coverage of 110.6. The departure of Emmanuel Sanders in free agency means the team needs Markus Wheaton to step up, and for all the draft picks spent on the offensive line, it remains a unit that has yet to distinguish itself.
I understand where Monson is coming from, but 27th overall? He has the Cleveland Browns ranked 24th, just so you know.