WR attempting to add deep threat to his resume
A breakout season saw JuJu Smith-Schuster rank among the NFL leaders in receptions and yards. A tumultuous offseason saw him ascend to a role as the Pittsburgh Steelers’ top target. What Smith-Schuster wants to evolve into this season is a different player, one who adds dangerous deep threat to his resume by providing splash plays for the Steelers.
“Being able to catch the deep balls down the field, those go balls, those free balls that they send down the field where I’ve got to go make those plays,” Smith-Schuster said. “That’s what I’ve focused on a lot, catching the ball over the shoulder and being able to be a threat on the outside.” (Pittsburgh Tribune)
Nerdy Football Analysis: Smith-Schuster played the slot on 59 percent of his snaps last year but has been spending much more time outside this preseason, including on 10-of-13 snaps in last week’s preseason game. It’s fair to wonder if Smith-Schuster can adequately fill the No. 1 role that belonged to Antonio Brown and beat the top corners in the game, but he’s already shown he can thrive with or without Brown and win regardless of where he lines up. He’s an easy top-five selection among receivers in drafts.