The journey toward Super Bowl LII ended far too prematurely for the Pittsburgh Steelers, sending them into offseason mode before we were ready for it. But we are in it now, and are ready to move on, through the Combine, through free agency, through the draft, into OTAs, and beyond.
We have asked and answered a lot of questions over the years and will continue to do so, and at the moment, there seem to be a ton of questions that need answering. A surprise early exit in the postseason will do that to you though, especially when it happens in the way it did.
You can rest assured that we have the questions, and we will be monitoring developments all throughout the offseason process, all the way down to Latrobe. Pending free agents, possible veteran roster cuts, contract extensions, pre-draft visits, pro days, all of it will have its place when the time arises.
Question: Should Landry Jones or Joshua Dobbs be the third quarterback on the roster?
It’s a foregone conclusion that, barring injuries or suspension—or sudden retirement—Ben Roethlisberger and Mason Rudolph will be two of the three quarterbacks the Steelers carry into the 2018 regular season. That leaves one opening for two more quarterbacks: Landry Jones and Joshua Dobbs.
Jones, entering his sixth season, has been the primary backup for the past few years and has some starting experience, as well as relief experience. He has a few come-from-behind notches on his belt and has a good command of the offense, with a great knowledge of the system.
Dobbs is a second-year quarterback drafted in the fourth round a year ago. He spent the first 15 games of the regular season inactive but dressed for the season finale when Jones started for a resting Roethlisberger, though he did not get into the game.
What you see from Jones, though, is pretty much what you’re going to get, for the remainder of his career. He has proven himself to be a capable, though not elite, backup option. He is probably not going to outgun Tom Brady in the Super Bowl, but he can get you through a rough patch if your quarterback goes down.
When it comes to Dobbs, we still don’t know what he can develop into. While he was certainly rough during his first preseason, that’s not exactly atypical of a rookie quarterback. He has leadership and athletic traits that could be developed.
Neither of them profile long-term as Roethlisberger’s backup. It’s possible that Rudolph could be the backup as soon as the regular season opener. So with that in mind, who is the more valuable number three?
Jones could be a bigger immediate asset to Rudolph in helping him understand the offense and the help prepare both quarterbacks ahead of him to dress. Dobbs could do that in time, but probably not this year. He is also the worse quarterback between himself and Jones right now. But does he have a higher ceiling? And how valuable is that in your number three?