Steelers defensive lineman Cam Heyward reacted to the Browns trading for Deshaun Watson by welcoming “all smoke to the AFC North.”
With Lamar Jackson in Baltimore and Joe Burrow in Cincinnati, the Steelers might have expected to look across the AFC North at the Browns in 2022 and know their quarterback situation wasn’t particularly settled either.
Pittsburgh is replacing franchise quarterback Ben Roethlisberger with a competition between Mitchell Trubisky, Mason Rudolph and Dwayne Haskins. Cleveland was supposed to be banking everything on Baker Mayfield proving himself in the final season of his contract.
Then the Browns went and shook everything up by pulling off a trade for Deshaun Watson.
Objectively, adding Watson to the division will make playoff contention that much more difficult. Despite that, Steelers star Cam Heyward isn’t acting scared at all.
Steelers DL Cam Heyward reacted to Deshaun Watson trade with defiance
“Personally I welcome all smoke to the AFC north see y’all in September,” Heyward wrote on Twitter.
While Cleveland definitely has the edge at quarterback thanks to their blockbuster deal, Pittsburgh has made their own moves to bolster their defense. They re-signed cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon, added corner Levi Wallace and linebacker Myles Jack in free agency.
On offense, the team is hoping to give their new quarterback a better foundation to stand on by signing James Daniels at guard and Mason Cole at center while re-signing tackle Chukwuma Okorafor. Not to mention bringing in Trubisky.
Heyward has been with the Steelers since they drafted him in 2011. During his decade in the league, he’s gone to five Pro Bowls. He picked up his third All-Pro first-team selection last season with 10 sacks to his name.
Now, Heyward will have the challenge of trying to bring down Watson as often as possible to keep the Browns from getting a leg up over Pittsburgh.