As the preseason is beginning the Steelers have yet to release Paxton Lynch from their roster. In fact, Pittsburgh hasn’t released any of its 5 QBs has from the 2019 season. Those 5 QBs consist of veteran Ben Roethlisberger, former 3rd round pick Mason Rudolph, Devlin Hodges, Paxton Lynch, and J.T. Barret.
Big Ben Roethlisberger is coming off of a season-ending injury, and not getting any younger. It is inevitable that Pittsburgh will have to replace him sooner rather than later. Although I believe that Mason Rudolph could become the future QB in Pittsburgh, others do not. If Rudolph does not pan out then either Hodges, Lynch or Barret will have to take the helm in Pittsburgh. At least until a new franchise quarterback is added to the roster.
Paxton Lynch is most known as the Denver Broncos’ 1st round draft bust from 2015. The Broncos only started Lynch in 4 games after drafting him. Since then he has hopped around on the practice squads of other teams. Most recently he signed onto the practice squad of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Although he didn’t play a regular-season snap in 2019, Paxton Lynch was promoted to the 53 man roster during week 6. Lynch was promoted due to the several injuries that the Steelers’ QB room sustained throughout the season. Although he did not see action in the regular season, the Steelers had enough confidence to have him as a backup behind rookie Devlin Hodges.
The reason the Steelers did not release and have some confidence in Lynch is due to his physical abilities and potential. In 2019 Tomlin applauded Lynch’s arm talent, arm strength, size, and fluidity in practice. Some have even speculated that he is the most physically talented QB on the roster. However, head coach Mike Tomlin also said that he felt hesitant playing Lynch in actual games. He said this because Lynch had almost no experience in Pittsburgh or its system.
Now that Lynch has actually had experience within Pittsburgh’s system and has had the ability to learn it throughout the offseason, does Paxton Lynch have a chance at the QB3 spot? I believe so. Lynch has superior size and strength compared to Devlin Hodges and J.T. Barret. The only thing that Lynch lacks is the right mindset to play QB. While he played for the Broncos he had as many interceptions as touchdowns. However, Lynch has not had the opportunity to grow. With the right coaching and more experience, he can turn his purely physical talent into good quarterback play. Lynch may be able to turn his career around in Pittsburgh.