Steelers WR Chase Claypool must get his ego under control

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

The more time goes by, the more Chase Claypool proves that he is somehow more trouble than he is worth. Should the Steelers receiver be put in check?

In a game that saw the Pittsburgh Steelers bring a 29-point deficit within a single touchdown, wide receiver Chase Claypool was seen using some of the final seconds to showboat. There really isn’t a way to sugarcoat it: What the heck is wrong with this man?

The young star is no stranger to controversy, having already made a multitude of questionable headlines in his short Pittsburgh tenure. But trying to be America’s Sweetheart on social media, while annoying, is not the end of the world. If only that was where the character concerns halted.

Nowadays, it appears as if Claypool has graduated to sabotaging the Steelers quality of performance altogether. The first hint of this unacceptable behavior was his answer to a question regarding what Pittsburgh should do to improve its play, and he had the gall to recommend playing more music in practice.

The idea was so horrendous that Steelers legends from both past and present voiced their disbelief at such a notion, including Ryan Clark and Cam Heyward (Claypool’s teammate).

What that answer told the football world is that Chase Claypool is someone who does not take the game (A.K.A. his job) seriously and — especially with him playing for a franchise as respected as that of the Pittsburgh Steelers — that is just pathetic. But boy, if only the ridiculousness had stopped there.

Claypool embarrassed Steelers fans

On Thursday night against the Minnesota Vikings, Claypool pulled a stunt so heinous that I believe it should throw his future with the Steelers into jeopardy.

As previously mentioned at the beginning, Pittsburgh found itself down 29-0 to the Minnesota Vikings well into the second half. However, Big Ben Roethlisberger has been doing a really good job of cementing himself as one of the most “clutch” quarterbacks that the NFL has ever seen.

Roethlisberger’s improvement, along with some O-Line solidity and Ahkello Witherspoon picks, saw the Steelers within reach of the largest regular-season comeback win in league history. In the game’s final moments, Pittsburgh was set to march down the field with the scoreboard then reading 36-28.

That closing drive saw the need for a 4th-down-conversion to keep the dream alive. The choice was then made for none other than Chase Claypool to make the big catch on a quick slant, which he attempted successfully.

It’s important to note that the Steelers had no timeouts left to use at this moment, and an NFL game clock doesn’t wait upon you just because you got the first down. In other words, even after Claypool reeled in the pass and the play was whistled dead, the clock kept on a-ticking.

What should every player be doing in such a sticky situation? Why, they should be hurrying up to get back in formation, of course! But Claypool didn’t do that.

Instead, he got up slowly, arrogantly. Upon doing so–with the ball still in his possession–he complacently pointed forward, to mock what he still saw as inferior foes. His teammates actually had to get his attention and tell him to hurry up and put the ball down.

What I described just might be the most idiotic circumstance that I have ever seen in my years of watching sports. Claypool’s call to showboat cost the Steelers several precious seconds, along with a potential game-changing play.

Now, Pittsburgh did still end up having a chance to tie the game, but rookie tight end Pat Freiermuth dropped a pass in the end zone after time had expired. However, there may have been time for one more play had Claypool just gotten up, given the ball to an official, and gotten ready for the next snap as quickly as possible. But he didn’t.

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In terms of sheer talent, Chase Claypool just might be the best wide receiver on the Steelers roster. With that said, he has amazingly managed to make himself out as a nuisance. If he keeps goofing off like he has so far in his young career, he will only give Pittsburgh more and more grief.