Tha Sports Junkies 101

Life After Roethlisberger: Who is the Quarterback of the Future for the Steelers?

Steelers quarterback of the future GB Bongiovanni via


Steelers Must Find Quarterback of the Future

For the past 13 seasons, the fans of the Pittsburgh Steelers have seen the growth and success of one starting quarterback.  Drafted with the 11th pick in the 2004 NFL Draft out of Miami (OH), Ben Roethlisberger has had nothing short of a hall of fame career.  In his 13 seasons with the Steelers he has made it to three Super Bowls, winning two of them.  With these successful seasons, Roethlisberger has totaled 3,804 completions for 46,814 yards and 301 touchdowns.  Almost immediately following this past season, Roethlisberger stated that he is reviewing all options for next season, which includes retirement.  Although there is no reason to believe that Roethlisberger isn’t going to be back next season, it is time for the Steelers to look for their quarterback of the future

Current Quarterback Options on the Roster

The Steelers currently have two quarterbacks behind Roethlisberger on their roster.  These quarterbacks are Landry Jones and Zach Mettenberger.  Jones has been the back up for the Steelers and just recently was signed to a two-year contract to stay in Pittsburgh.  With injuries to Roethlisberger, the Steelers have had to rely on Jones on multiple occasions to step in.  Jones is 2-2 as a starter when filling in for Roethlisberger.  He threw for 558 yard with 4 touchdowns and 2 interceptions in 2016.

Mettenberger has also had prior starting experience.  He started for the Titans after he was drafted in 2014.  In the 2014 and 2015 seasons, Mettenberger totaled 208 completions for 2,347, 12 touchdowns, and 14 interceptions.

Free Agency Quarterback Options

Another way the Steelers could look to find their quarterback of the future is through free agency.  Some notable experienced quarterbacks that are still left include Jay Cutler, Chase Daniel, and Ryan Fitzpatrick.  However, I don’t see the Steelers going with a veteran quarterback to replace Roethlisberger.

Two other interesting options that come with baggage are Colin Kaepernick and Johnny Manziel.  The 49ers have moved on from Kaepernick and he has still not found a new home.  He has had some success as he led the 49ers to a Super Bowl in his first year as a starter.  He has created controversy with his actions during the national anthem before games in protest.  On the other hand, Manziel didn’t play in a single game last season after going to rehab.  However, he is still an interesting talent that had great success in college.  Knowing the history of the Steelers, they won’t sign either of these players to be their future at quarterback, but it is still something to look at.

2017 Quarterback Draft Class

The 2017 NFL Draft holds many great quarterback prospects that the Steelers should take a look at.  Some mock drafts have the Steelers possibly drafting a quarterback in the first round with the 30th pick.  Quarterback prospects that have been mentioned for that pick include Deshaun Watson (Clemson), Mitch Trubisky (North Carolina), and Pat Mahomes (Texas Tech).  However, the Steelers have much bigger needs to fill with their first round selection.

The best spot in the draft for the Steelers to select a quarterback would be in the third round.  Pittsburgh has two picks in the third round, so they could easily select a quarterback with one of those picks.  Some interesting prospects that come to mind that could be available include Brad Kaaya (Miami FL), Davis Webb (California), Nathan Peterman (Pittsburgh), and Josh Dobbs (Tennessee).

My Choice- BRAD KAAYA!

The best way that I feel the Steelers could find their quarterback of the future is in the draft.  As I just mentioned, the Steelers have other needs to fill early in the draft, so a mid-round quarterback would be their best bet.  As Jon Gruden said himself on an episode of  his “Quarterback Camp”, Brad Kaaya is the most underrated quarterback in this year’s draft.  Kaaya was a three-year starter at Miami and improved significantly in each season.  In his final season with the Hurricanes, Kaaya had a 62% completion percentage and threw for over 3,500 yards with 27 touchdowns and seven interceptions.  If he could come in and have a couple of seasons to sit and learn from Roethlisberger, Kaaya could be a great quarterback for the Steelers once his number is called.

*All stats found via

Have any new information about this story or something you believe is newsworthy? Please contact us today at