With strange circumstances comes a strange football season, due to the Covid 19 breakout and pandemic, NFL players have been given the option to opt out of playing in 2020. Most teams have been hit with an opt out, all except 4, with one of the 4 being the Pittsburgh Steelers. And according to sources, Mike Tomlin hasn’t heard any player considering it and no opt outs are expected. The Steelers are coming off of a season that left some questions, at least on the offensive side of the ball, and have a lot rolling on one piece, quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. But being one of the only teams to have no opt outs could be the edge the Steelers need to return to the playoffs.
To recap, a statistical top 5 defense is going to be returning at full strength in Pittsburgh, and the offense should hopefully be stronger, with the return of a quarterback with talent in Ben Roethlisberger. Meanwhile other teams have been hit by the opt outs, a notable example being AFC for New England Patriots with a whopping 8 opt outs, some of them being very notable starters. Am I going ahead and saying the Steelers are guaranteed to finish better than the Patriots? As much as I’d like to, I’m not saying that. I’m only pointing out the notable edge the Steelers hold over the Patriots and other teams who have had some starters and notable players opt out.
The Steelers should be excited if they do end up having no players opt out, this is already a notable edge, and may become more notable before the 4 PM deadline hits today on August 6. The only disadvantage the Steelers are at is shared across the league, limited training camp, no preseason, no time to truly scout out the rookies. This is a strange season, but the Steelers May have just received the edge they need to return to glory.