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Mike Tomlin Reveals Brutally Honest Expectation For Kenny Pickett

PITTSBURGH, PA - AUGUST 13: Kenny Pickett #8 of the Pittsburgh Steelers warms up before a preseason game against the Seattle Seahawks at Acrisure Stadium on August 13, 2022 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH, PA - AUGUST 13: Kenny Pickett #8 of the Pittsburgh Steelers warms up before a preseason game against the Seattle Seahawks at Acrisure Stadium on August 13, 2022 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)

Kenny Pickett made his NFL debut on Sunday. This week, he'll be making his first career start. 

The 2022 first-round pick isn't exactly stepping into a great situation. The Pittsburgh Steelers are 1-3 and have a struggling offense; they're also about to enter a brutal four-game stretch against the Bills, Buccaneers, Dolphins and Eagles.

Even with all that working against him, there will still be a pressure on Pickett to turn in positive results, and fast. It will come from the fan base, as well as the team itself.

Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin laid out the expectations for Pickett during his Tuesday media availability. 

"He's a young guy. He's got to grow throughout this process," Tomlin said, via Mike DeFabo of The Athletic. "But make no mistake about it. We're not grading him on a curve. He's not grading himself on a curve. There's an expectation of quality play and playing to win."

Pickett relieved Mitch Trubisky to start the second half against the Jets on Sunday. He wound up completing 10-of-13 passes for 120 yards and running for two touchdowns, but also threw three interceptions.

We'll see how the rookie can handle the vaunted Bills defense this Sunday.