Gridiron Report: Steelers Lose to Jets as Pickett Makes Debut

Written By Anthony Cugini, Sports Columnist

On Sunday the Pittsburgh Steelers lost to the New York Jets by the score of 24-20.

Rookie quarterback Kenny Pickett came into the game to begin the second half with the Steelers down 10-6. Mitch Trubisky had yet another sub par first half which led to the change at the quarterback position for Pittsburgh Pickett began his career with an interception that bounced off the hands of Chase Claypool and into the arms of a Jet defender. 

Pittsburgh bounced back with an interception from Minkah Fitzpatrick. This helped spark the Steelers as Kenny Pickett ran a QB sneak into the endzone for his first career touchdown. 

Pickett ran in another touchdown towards the end of the third quarter. After the Jets responded with a touchdown, Pickett threw another interception on a ball that should have never been thrown. Pickett threw the ball into double coverage which resulted in a tip from tight end Pat Freiermuth then a pick for the Jets.

Pickett rounded out his first career game with a third interception on a hail mary. In his debut Kenny Pickett completed 10 of 13 passes for 120 yards and three interceptions. 

It wasn’t exactly a dream debut for Kenny. He made a couple bad throws that came back to bite the Steelers on multiple occasions. Pickett got the Steelers back into the game in the second half by providing some decent play and a whole lot of energy. But Kenny also helped lead to the loss with some costly turnovers. All he can do now is learn from his mistakes.

Pickett was by no means the only reason Pittsburgh lost. The Steelers’ defense allowed the Jets to score two touchdowns on long drives in the fourth quarter. The defense was subpar and couldn’t step up when they needed to. Pittsburgh had a huge opportunity to ice the game as the Jets lined up for a fourth down and seven. The Jets were able to complete a pass across the middle to pick up the first down. 

There were too many opportunities for Pittsburgh. If you want to win in the NFL, you have to punch in on the opportunities the Steelers were provided Sunday afternoon.

This is Pittsburgh’s third straight loss and they now sit at a record of 1-3. The good news is that the rest of the AFC North are all 2-2 meaning Pittsburgh is by no means out of the race for the division title.

The big headline this week will be whether the Steelers start Mitch Trubisky or Kenny Pickett in Buffalo on this upcoming Sunday. Personally, I feel as if Pickett has to be the start. Yes, Pickett made some costly errors that partly caused the loss. However there’s no denying Pickett provided a much needed boost to the offense. The entire stadium erupted as he took the field. It’s time for the Pickett era to begin in Pittsburgh.

The Steelers will travel to Buffalo to take on possibly the best team in the league. The Bills sit 3-1 on the season after they took down the Ravens with a last second field goal.