How the Steelers can fix their offensive woes in 2020
The Steelers Wide Receivers were ‘out of sorts’ in 2020
The reason I say that the Wide Receivers were ‘out of sorts’ in 2020 is this: JuJu Smith-Schuster, who, by all accounts, was supposed to be the ‘number one’ receiver in 2020, did not have a ‘number one’ receiver type of year.
Smith-Schuster finished the 2019 season with 42 receptions for 552 and 3 TD passes. Having missed 4 games due to injury, Smith-Schuster just simply did not have a very productive season. I would argue that the WR group as a whole was probably not as productive as they could have been. The leading WR on the team in terms of receptions was Diontae Johnson, who finished the season with 59 receptions.
The fact that a rookie WR led the group in receptions is very telling. What is also very telling, at least to me is this: According to the official website of the NFL, the Steelers passing game finished 31st in terms of average yards per pass at 6.3 yards. That is awful. Let’s be honest.
So what can the Steelers offense do in 2020 to ameliorate this lack of productivity? Well, for starters, we need to either find a WR currently on the roster or sign a free agent or trade for someone who can stretch the field.
I understand that WRs with that type of skill set do not grow on trees, so to speak, but the offense needs to address the fact that, in 2019, there was really no WR who could consistently ‘take the top off of the defense’. If you can’t throw the ball deep, the opposing defense will have no fear of the passing game, which is exactly what transpired in 2020.
The Steelers need to find cures to the what ailed the offense in 2019
To say that the Steelers offense in 2019 was not very productive would be an understatement. To say that the Steelers offense in 2019 was not very complimentary to the defense would also be an understatement.
Both the aforementioned proclamations are, unfortunately, true; however, the cures are not elusive. Perhaps a scheme change is in order; perhaps a change in personnel is in order. My opinion is this: If the Steelers offense can revert to a ‘power’ running game, can involve the TEs with more consistency than in 2019 and can cultivate or find a WR who can stretch the field, we will be an offense to be reckoned with in 2020.