Would the Steelers take any rookie wide receiver over Chase Claypool?

Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Chase Claypool (11) Mandatory Credit: Steve Roberts-USA TODAY Sports
Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Chase Claypool (11) Mandatory Credit: Steve Roberts-USA TODAY Sports /

Chase Claypool has been amazing for the Steelers. Given the choice, would Pittsburgh trade him for another rookie receiver?

There isn’t a soul on earth that could be disappointed with the way Steelers wide receiver Chase Claypool has played to start his NFL career. Though the first 10 games of his rookie season, the 2020 second-round draft choice has managed a whopping 10 total touchdowns (8 receiving and 2 rushing). His ability to stretch the defense and to win on any level of the field has made him a matchup nightmare to opposing cornerbacks.

Claypool has been so good, in fact, that there have been many discussions circulating on social media as to whether or not he is already the best wide receiver on this team. It’s not hard to see why this is happening. At 6’4” and 238 pounds, Claypool has a remarkable combination of size and athleticism, but he is so much more than an athlete; he’s a football player.

Over the first half of his rookie season, Claypool has shown incredible toughness and ball skills across the middle of the field as well as the ability to come down with combated catches along the sideline. Other than the occasional concentration drop, there isn’t much of anything to knock him for.

Would the Steelers take any other rookie receivers over Chase Claypool?

This begs another hypothetical scenario that we will never see play out: If given the chance, would the Steelers take any other 2020 rookie receiver over Chase Claypool?

While you’ve probably already said ‘no’ in your mind, it’s important to consider just how talented this rookie draft class really is (after all, there were 10 receivers off the board before Claypool was drafted). This doesn’t mean that every NFL general manager made the right decision by passing on Chase Claypool. Clearly, there were many who would take him over what they have in a heartbeat. However, this has a chance to be a historic draft class when it comes to wide receivers.

CeeDee Lamb, Jerry Jeudy, and Henry Ruggs were considered to be the ‘cream of the crop’ by most of the general football media prior to April’s draft. These three guys dominated at the college level and weren’t flying under anyone’s radar. After them, names like Justin Jefferson, Jalen Reagor, and Brandon Auiyuk were considered the best of the rest.

Throughout the process, Claypool’s draft range was considered in the group that included players like Michael Pittman, Laviska Shenault, K.J. Hamler, and Dezel Mims. Of this group, clearly, Claypool has shown more promise than these players put together. But what about overall.

While Claypool seems like the easy answer with his lethal combination of size, speed, and body control, there are a few other players who have been thoroughly impressive in their rookie seasons so far. CeeDee Lamb was on the pace to have a monster year with Dak Prescott at the helm, and he’s already shown promise of why he will be a future Pro Bowl receiver. Justin Jefferson has been arguably the most impressive of all. While he doesn’t have anywhere close to Claypool’s touchdown numbers, he has earned 848 yards and 18.8 yards per reception in the first 10 games of his career. He’s on the pace for an astonishingly high 1,356 reiving yards in his first year in the NFL.

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At the end of the day, Kevin Colbert and Mike Tomlin would likely stand pat in what they have – knowing who Chase Claypool is as a player and person and that he will a force for years to come. It will be interesting to follow the careers of these talented wide receivers. When it’s all said and done, there’s a chance the Steelers could end up with the very best one.