2017 SCU Awards: Steelers Offensive Player of the Year

Steel City Underground presents the 2nd annual SCU Awards. Our panel of contributors all voted on various awards for the Steelers with the player getting the most votes being the winner.

Each article will have the list of nominees with one of our contributors stating their case for why that player earned their vote and deserves the award.

Comment and let us know if you agree or disagree with our winners and nominees. 

The offensive player of the year is a tough award to hand out on a team like the Steelers. How many teams in the NFL are fortunate enough to have elite talent at quarterback, wide receiver, and running back? The answer is not many.

The award could go to any of the positions mentioned, but there can only be one winner.

The nominees…

Embed from Getty Images

Ben Roethlisberger

While I agree that Roethlisberger had moments that created doubt, it is hard for me to say that Antonio Brown, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Le’Veon Bell, and the receivers and backs would have had the success they did without Big Ben’s veteran play.

Many will point out his Week 5 disaster as a reason he should not be considered for this award, but he can’t be blamed for the slow start the offense – including Bell – got off to during the 2017 season. Roethlisberger passed several Steelers franchise and NFL records at the quarterback position. His play often helped rally the team in tight situations. Yes, his supporting cast (especially the offense line) gave him the tools he needed to do as well as he did. Despite the loss to the Jaguars in the Divisional Round, he was still able to orchestrate drive after drive and put points on the board by finding open targets.

All this in spite of an icy relationship with now-former offensive coordinator Todd Haley. Credit his relationship with Randy Fichtner once he joined the sideline with a nice run of wins. All of that despite drama within the locker room (including some he created). The Steelers would not have had Brown and Bell at the top of the league with Landry Jones or Josh Dobbs at the helm.

– Christina Rivers

Embed from Getty Images

Antonio Brown

It’s hard to imagine that Brown led the league in receiving yards after missing 2.5 games worth of playing time (due to injury) and having six games where he had 70 receiving yards or less.

If that’s not an “offensive” output, I’m not sure what is. Le’Veon Bell is someone I considered, but his perceived slow start, bundled with only four games of 100 or more rushing yards, made it tough for me to get on board with him as the offensive MVP.

Ben Roethlisberger’s poor showing and lack of continuity with his teammates early on also rubbed me the wrong way. The only guy he was on the same page with at the beginning of the season was AB, and that’s why he’s my OPOY.

– Joe Kuzma

Sometimes when I’m watching Antonio Brown play football I try and step back and think how lucky I am to be watching a hall of fame player during the prime of his career. Antonio Brown is simply a freak. Week after week he finds new ways to get opens and continues making catches that leave our jaws on the floor.

Brown is living proof that size and speed doesn’t make a great receiver. Sure he can’t jump as high as Julio Jones or run as fast as Tyreek Hill, but his route running ability, ever-reliable hands, and all the various nuances to his game more than compensate for his physical deficiencies.

– Eric Herrmann

Winner: Antonio Brown (10 votes)

Runner-up: Ben Roethlisberger (1 vote)

Who is your pick?

We’re currently accepting fan submissions over on our Twitter poll. Choose your pick below.

Other 2017 SCU Award Winners

Suggested articles from our sponsors