The Pittsburgh Steelers had, by and large, a successful season that many other NFL franchises would gladly take. Despite all their offensive struggles, coaching changes, and injury problems, the Steelers made it to the playoffs and put up a bit of an admirable fight in their Wild Card Round defeat to the Buffalo Bills. But Steelers owner Art Rooney II wants his team to take the next step in 2024, and that means that their quarterback play, which more than likely would still involve Kenny Pickett, must improve tenfold.

In fact, Rooney even went as far as to say that Pickett must work extra hard on his game to help the Steelers achieve their ambitions of becoming a more legitimate Super Bowl contender for next season.

“I think the biggest thing we need is quality play at the quarterback position,” Rooney said, per Mark Kaboly of The Athletic. “We still feel good about Kenny Pickett and his future. But he knows he needs to work hard to take the next step, and we’ve talked about that.”

There may be nothing that jolts Pickett wide awake more than a public callout from his boss. Evidently, the Steelers want Pickett to succeed. They may have not put him in the best position to do so, hence their decision to change the team's offensive coordinator in the middle of the season, but the 25-year old QB doesn't exactly rate among the best at his position in the NFL.

Could the Steelers possibly hand over the QB1 distinction to Mason Rudolph for next season instead? Perhaps. After all, Art Rooney II looks like as big of a Rudolph fan as one is, which should be another wake-up call for Kenny Pickett.

“What I think we need [Pickett] to be is just continue to develop, to be a quarterback that can, you know, read a defense quickly and get the offense into the best play for a given situation when he comes out of the huddle,” Rooney added. “Mason Rudolph came in and showed, I think, what we’re capable of when we do get quality play at the quarterback position.”

The 2024 season should be a pivotal one for Kenny Pickett, as it could make or break his career with the Steelers.