Hines Ward Believes Steelers’ Future Is Shiny: ‘Trying For Large Issues From Pittsburgh Subsequent Yr’

Count former wide receiver and current XFL head coach Hines Ward as a big believer in the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2023.

Appearing on Chat Sports with host Harrison Graham from Radio Row in Arizona ahead of Super Bowl LVII, Ward spoke glowingly of his former team, believing that the future is very bright and expectations are high for the black and gold entering the 2023 season, in large part due to the makeup of a young offense overall.

“The Steelers’ future is very bright,” Ward said, according to video via the Chat Sports YouTube page. “You look at what George Pickens can do on the outside and the rest of the talented receiving core to go along with Najee Harris. Now you just have to solidify upfront on the offensive line. I’m looking for big things from Pittsburgh next year.”


On paper, it’s a very talented offense overall, featuring quarterback Kenny Pickett — who closed his rookie season in style with four game-winning/fourth-quarter comeback drives in the second half of the season — and wide receivers Diontae Johnson and George Pickens, not to mention running back Najee Harris and tight end Pat Freiermuth.

Though Johnson had his struggles in 2022 and didn’t find the end zone, setting a dubious record in NFL history for most targets and receptions without a touchdown, he remains an elite-level route runner that creates separation with the best of them. Pickens showed his abilities as a contested-catch monster as a rookie and really came on strong down the stretch as his relationship with Pickett great stronger and stronger.

Then, of course, there’s the running game with Harris and Jaylen Warren, which developed into a top 10 rushing attack in football in the second half of the season, providing serious balance to an offense that found a winning formula in the second half of the season behind an offensive line that gelled at the right time and was able to take over games down the stretch.

While the offense played much better in the second half, so too did the defense, especially after the return of T.J. Watt from injury. Down the stretch, the Steelers’ defense was one of the best in the league at taking the football away and limiting points, which led to the 7-2 run to close the season.

Based on the way the Steelers ended the 2022 season, there are plenty of reasons for optimism entering 2023, much like Ward laid out. There’s still some major work to be done from the salary cap perspective, additions in free agency and a massive draft coming up for the new front office of GM Omar Khan, assistant GM Andy Weidl and Director of Pro Scouting Sheldon White.

But optimism is high coming off of a transition season. Ward isn’t alone in looking for big things from the black and gold in 2023.

Related articles



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest articles