Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Diontae Johnson continued his “hold-in” on Monday in Latrobe. He enters the final year of his rookie contract, and it’s becoming clear the Steelers won’t offer him the money he may want or demand. With his absence, it’s opened the door for several other guys at wide receiver.
One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Tyler Vaughns has stepped up and shown flashes of talent in the first few days of training camp. Rookies George Pickens and Calvin Austin III have been the talk of Steelers camp so far, impressing with their speed and route running. Perhaps no guy has elevated his status more than Anthony Miller, though.
After the Chicago Bears selected Miller in the second round of the 2018 NFL Draft, he hasn’t had the career many expected him to have. He had 1,564 receiving yards and 11 TDs in three seasons, before moving onto the Houston Texans last off-season. Things didn’t pan out there either, leading the Steelers to pick him up. Now, he’s back with the quarterback that he spent his first few seasons with in Chicago, Mitch Trubisky. That’s helped Miller’s transition in his first full off-season in Pittsburgh. Johnson’s absence, as well as the injury to Chase Claypool, has allowed Miller to step up and get first-team reps.
Before camp, Miller seemed to be on the outside-looking in as far as his chances of making the 53-man roster. With Claypool, Johnson, Austin, and Pickens as four locks to make the team, the Steelers will only carry, at most, two more wideouts. Gunner Olszewski signed a two-year, $4.2 million deal this off-season and figures to be a prominent part of the team’s return game. The former Patriot made the First Team All-Pro in 2020 with most of his work coming in the punt return game. As a result, that likely only leaves one spot remaining for the wide receiver position in Pittsburgh.
While Miles Boykin hasn’t had a bad start to camp by any means, Miller seems to have the leg-up on that final spot at the moment. He’s been integrated in the organization a bit longer, which only helps, as Boykin signed with the team earlier this off-season. The former Ravens WR, or whoever loses out on the final spot, will more than likely end up on the practice squad.
Do you guys think Anthony Miller will make the 53-man roster? If so, do you see him having any impact on the team’s offense this season? What about Miles Boykin? Let us know your initial thoughts on the WR position from the first few days of training camp!
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