The Pittsburgh Steelers appear to have decided on their starting quarterback for their season opener against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday (September 11).
Veteran Mitchell Trubisky was listed as the team's starting quarterback on the Steelers' official depth chart released on Tuesday (September 6), hours after being listed atop the team's unofficial depth chart and selected as one of five team captains on Monday (September 5), NFL.com reports.
Steelers Senior Director of Communications Burt Lauten shared the official Week 1 depth chart on his verified Twitter account.
Head coach Mike Tomlin also stated, "Mitch Trubisky is our starting quarterback and our captain" during his press conference on Tuesday (September 6) morning via ESPN's Brooke Pryor.
Trubisky will start in 2022 despite the team's long-term investment in Kenny Pickett, who the Steelers selected at No. 20 overall in April.
Last month, ESPN's Dianna Russini reported that Pittsburgh's starting role was "Mitchell Trubisky's job to lose," despite Pickett's strong performances through two preseason games and training camp.
"He is the starter in Pittsburgh, as good as Kenny's playing," Russini said of Trubisky. "The organization has been very impressed with Pickett's play on the field and his overall knowledge in the classroom but, for now, this is Trubisky's job."
In July, NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported that Trubisky appeared to be "leading" the steelers' quarterback competition during the team's first week of training camp.
Trubisky was getting the "first crack at winning the starting QB job," according to Rapoport, who said the former No. 2 overall pick is "a perfect system fit" in offensive coordinator Matt Canada's offense, despite the team having recently invested its long-term plans in Pickett, the No. 20 overall pick in this year's draft.
"This is a perfect system fit, Matt Canada's offense and Mitchell Trubisky, a really good athlete playing the quarterback position," Rapoport said. "We might see him get to a point where at the end of the year the Steelers say, 'alright, well this guy's our starter. We either turn it over to Kenny Pickett for the long-term or we work toward a future with Mitchell Trubisky.'"
Rapoport added that having both quarterbacks as viable options next season is "best case for the Steelers" before adding that Trubisky was "clearly leading this."
Trubisky signed a two-year deal with the Steelers in March, sources with knowledge of the deal confirmed to NFL Network's Mike Garafolo at the time.
Trubisky was expected to start for Pittsburgh in the absence of retired longtime starter Ben Roethlisberger prior to the team drafted Pickett in the first-round of the 2022 NFL Draft one month later.
Trubisky made 50 career starts during his five seasons with the Chicago Bears, finishing with a 29-21 QB record, as well as throwing for 10,609 yards, 64 touchdowns and 37 interceptions on 1,010 of 1,577 passing, while also recording 1,057 yards and eight touchdowns on 190 rushing attempts.
Pickett, a Heisman Trophy finalist, was one of college football's most decorated passers in 2021, winning numerous national awards while leading the Pittsburgh Panthers, who share a football facility and stadium with the Steelers, to an ACC championship and 11-2 record.