The Pittsburgh Steelers are back in the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex earlier than they had anticipated, having been ousted from the postseason in the opening round, which unfortunately marks a slight improvement from the past two seasons, during which they did not even qualify for the playoffs altogether. They have now done four seasons without securing a victory beyond regular season play.
Yet again, they find themselves undergoing the exit meeting process earlier than anticipated, which means so are we.
They did manage to go 12-4 during the regular season, and secured their first AFC North title since 2017, posting a new franchise record by opening the season with 11 consecutive wins, but of course it all fell apart after that. Their only victory after that required a 17-point comeback.
While we might not know all the details about what goes on between head coach Mike Tomlin and his players during these exit meetings, we do know how we would conduct those meetings if they were let up to us. So here are the Depot’s exit meetings for the Steelers’ roster following the 2020 season.
Player: Kevin Dotson
Experience: 1 Year
Kevin Dotson was a Steelers fan long before they drafted him. It didn’t take Steelers fans too long to return the favor, and following his rookie season, it would seem there is a very good chance that he has the opportunity to land a full-time starting job entering year two.
Should he indeed secure a starting job in 2021, he will be the first Steelers lineman to do so in his second season or earlier in nearly a decade—though of course the team also hasn’t drafted ton of linemen since then, either, nor have they used higher draft picks.
Dotson wasn’t necessarily a high pick himself. He was the team’s second of two selections in the fourth round, and in fact he was a player who was not even invited to participate in the NFL Scouting Combine, though the showrunners would later admit that they missed out on him and took the blame.
Despite coming in from a smaller school with no in-person Spring workouts, a shortened training camp in which he missed time due to a knee injury, and with no preseason to boot, Dotson was prepared for play from the get go.
David DeCastro missed the start of the season due to an injury of his own, with Stefen Wisniewski taking his place. Wisniewski was injured in the opener, and Dotson had to replace him. In all, he started four games, though it could have been more if he hadn’t himself gotten injured.
He also missed time with Covid-19. Certainly a lot of obstacles throughout his rookie year, but he came out of it smiling and ready to take on a bigger role. Which he will, unless the Steelers decide to re-sign Matt Feiler and start him at left guard—or they draft an interior lineman early in the draft.