NFL News & Analysis

Premium Content Sign Up

With uncertainty about Brown’s future swirling, Smith-Schuster has already shown that he can be a number one option

Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster (19) takes the field to play the New England Patriots at Heinz Field. The Patriots won 27-24. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

It wasn’t too long ago that the Pittsburgh Steelers had arguably the most complete set of skill position players in the NFL – included were the likes of all-pro running back Le’Veon Bell, all-pro wide receiver Antonio Brown, the electric home-run threat Martavis Bryant, and a young rookie that had burst onto the scene in JuJu Smith-Schuster.

As the Steelers head into the 2019 offseason, that list is dwindling. Bell appears destined to take his talents elsewhere after failing to reach a long-term deal with the Steelers and sitting out the entire 2018 season.  Bryant was traded to the Oakland Raiders for a third-round pick and has since been suspended indefinitely by the NFL. Lastly, Brown had a disagreement with the team prior to Week 17, resulting in a benching and a subsequent schism between him and the Steelers organization that has bubbled over to social media. Trade rumors have spiraled since, especially after team president Art Rooney II said that it was “hard to envision” Brown being with the team for the start of training camp next season.

If Brown indeed does not return, that leaves one player from that previous list – JuJu Smith-Schuster. Smith-Schuster has become one of the premier personalities and brands in the league just two years into his career. His flair for social media and high-profile video game escapades with cultural icons such as Drake and Travis Scott have brought him a new audience of fans. However, do not let that distract you from the fact that he has also developed into one of the best young talents at the position.

Subscribe to PFF Edge to continue reading

Already have a subscription? Sign In

You've got the first pick with your finances. Western Southern Financial Group.

NFL Featured Tools

  • Live picks, grades and reaction to the 2022 NFL Draft.

  • PFF's Big Board for the 2023 NFL Draft offers three-year player grades, combine measurables, position rankings, and in-depth player analysis for all of the top draft prospects.

    Available with

  • 250+ three-page scouting profiles - advanced stats, 3-year grades, player comps, combine data and Senior Bowl grades - for the 2022 draft class.

    Available with

  • PFF's exclusive metrics provide matchup previews, position rankings, grades, and snap counts.

    Available with

  • Our exclusive database, featuring the most in-depth collection of NFL player performance data.

    Available with

Pro Subscriptions

Unlock NFL Player Grades, Fantasy & NFL Draft

$9.99 / mo
$39.99 / yr

Unlock Premium Stats, PFF Greenline & DFS

$34.99 / mo
$199.99 / yr