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The differences between the 2022 and 2023 Pittsburgh Steelers

Fans of the Pittsburgh Steelers know the tale of the 2022 team.

  • Start the season 2-6 before the bye week.
  • End the season 7-2.
  • Win the last 4 games to be on the cusp of a playoff berth.
  • Miss the postseason, but feel confident about the direction of the team moving forward.

The 2022 Steelers story has already been written, while the 2023 team is preparing for the 17-game marathon starting next Sunday at Acrisure Stadium when the San Francisco 49ers invade Pittsburgh.

But what’s the biggest difference between the 2022 version and the current version of Mike Tomlin’s team? According to wide receiver Miles Boykin, it’s not that complicated.

“Just the cohesiveness. I think we are closer than we were last year,” said receiver Miles Boykin following practice last week. “Everybody sees the direction this team is headed in. Everyone is excited about where we can go as a team. We look around and have confidence in each other. I think that says it all.”

One of the main reasons for the cohesiveness would be second year quarterback Kenny Pickett. Pickett enters his sophomore season as the entrenched starter. Contrast that to last season when there was a discussion/debate about who would be the full-time starter in 2022. This year it’s Pickett’s show, and that matters.

“It’s huge, especially when you have a quarterback leading the way,” said Boykin. “It’s his second year, but he has really grabbed the bull by the horns and has taken everybody along with him. He has great communication skills, which help everybody on the field. When you have a guy like that, you have confidence in him, you have confidence in this offense. It’s easy from that standpoint.”

But in all actuality, how good can the Steelers be this season? Boykin suggests the lofty expectations fans have set for the team aren’t far off rom his own.

“We can be one of the best in the league,” said Boykin. “We have to take it one step at a time. Worry about the details. Focus on that.

“We’ll go wherever Kenny takes us.”

Talk about pressure on Pickett, but something tells me he is okay with that pressure. Now it’s time to deliver.

Be sure to stay tuned to SCN for the latest news and notes surrounding the Steelers as they prepare for the start of the 2023 regular season.

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