Former Tennessee Vols QB Josh Dobbs Could Be The Backup QB For Pittsburgh Steelers

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - AUGUST 11: Quarterback Joshua Dobbs
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - AUGUST 11: Quarterback Joshua Dobbs /

Former Tennessee Vols quarterback Josh Dobbs has started the first two pre-season games for the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Due to an injury to incumbent backup quarterback Landry Jones, former Tennessee Vols quarterback Josh Dobbs has seen plenty of playing time during the pre-season with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Dobbs hasn’t exactly lit it up this pre-season, but he hasn’t been terrible either. The Georgia native was 10-of-19 for 70 yards and one interception in the Steelers’ win against the Falcons.

Those numbers are obviously mediocre, but Dobbs wasn’t exactly helped out by his receivers. There were several drops that caused Dobbs’ numbers to look a little worse than they really were.

It’s still a long shot that Dobbs ends up being the primary backup to Ben Roethlisberger — Landry Jones clearly has a better understanding of the offense, assuming he returns healthy — but it’s still a possibly, according to Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin.

Ahead of the Steelers’ game against the Falcons, Tomlin told the media that he’s “open” to Dobbs backing up Roethlisberger.

"The door’s never been closed on anyone having an opportunity to move up the depth chart. We’re in the business of winning. If he [Dobbs] proves that he’s capable, I’m open to it."

If Dobbs is going to overtake Jones, however, he’s going to have to improve in a few areas. Specifically in taking care of the ball. This isn’t anything new. There were times at Tennessee when Dobbs held on to the ball too long, trying to make something happen. Sometimes it worked out for him in college, as he was able to make plays with his legs. But that won’t always be the case in the NFL, and it’s something Tomlin noticed.

The Steelers head coach was complimentary of Dobbs, but he also pointed out some areas where the rookie signal caller can improve.

"I thought he did some things well. I thought he did some things he can improve on. We don’t like the carelessness of the ball. There were a couple of instances where I would like to see him throw the ball away. It was a good learning experience for him."

It goes without saying that Dobbs is incredibly smart. I have no doubt that he will listen to these criticisms and make the appropriate corrections.

Whether or not that will be enough to pass Jones on the depth chart is a completely different question.

Dobbs will have to show marked improvement in the final two pre-season games if he’s going to gain Tomlin’s trust as Roethlisberger’s backup.