Ranking the odds of Arthur Smith standouts making the Steelers roster

The Steelers signed four former Arthur Smith offensive players this offseason, and here are the odds of each of them cracking the final roster.
Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Van Jefferson (15)
Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Van Jefferson (15) / Steve Roberts-USA TODAY Sports

The Steelers made their goal and identity clear on offense: they want to be a physical, run-first team. The signing of Arthur Smith to be the offensive coordinator was proof of this. At his best in Tennessee, that is how he utilized the offense and to great success.

The team was also willing to add some names to their roster with Smith connections. Some were just for a short portion of a season while others were core favorites of the former head coach. In total, four offensive players joined the Steelers with ties to Smith, and here are the roster odds of each ahead of training camp.

Steelers WR Scotty Miller

Odds: 10%

Scotty Miller was a later addition to the roster, and his spot seems entirely contingent on how the team views Calvin Austin. Both are undersized receivers with good speed. Despite their size, they also aren’t great options in the slot, making them weird fits at the NFL level.

Miller had most of his success with Tom Brady at quarterback and has failed to do much without him. While he has the experience edge, I think this team will give Austin every shot to win this spot. It would take both Miller looking like a renewed player and Austin playing miserably to see him crack the final roster.

Steelers TE MyCole Pruitt

Odds: 35%

I went back and forth on a number here. On one hand, MyCole Pruitt has been a staple on Smith’s units since his time in Tennessee, and he can do enough as a third or fourth tight end to warrant a roster spot. On the other hand, this team could carry three tight ends instead of four and even if they carry the extra one, Rodney Williams was a good special teams player last year.

That said, I have a spot on the roster for him written in pencil. Smith likes what he brings to the backend of a depth chart and the early presumption is that the offense will carry four tight ends. Unless Williams takes a step forward, this seems like Pruitt’s spot to lose.

Steelers WR Van Jefferson

Odds: 65%

What is really alarming is that assuming Van Jefferson makes the roster, he will likely be the second option for this offense. Considering how low his overall odds are makes that seem like a typo. While Jefferson had some good moments early in his career, he fell off last year and failed to do much after Atlanta traded for him.

Unless a notable name is brought in via a trade, Jefferson has the inside track to be the second option though so I have to go over 50 percent with his odds. That said, he doesn’t offer much on special teams, so if he fails to capitalize or if a better second option emerges, his lack of special teams play could lead to him getting cut.

Steelers RB Cordarrelle Patterson

Odds: 99%

While listed as a running back, Cordarrelle Patterson was brought in primarily to be the kick returner given the new rules that were made this offseason. Beyond that, he can serve as a viable reserve running back and can work as a hybrid receiver given that was what he was drafted to be by the Vikings way back when.

It would be shocking to see him not make this roster given his contract and clear path to a role. That said, it isn’t impossible. Expect to see him make the final list of players though easily, and don’t be surprised to see him have a role on this offense when everything is said and done.

The Steelers brought in a handful of former Smith standouts, and while not all of them will make the final roster, it is a clear indication that this team wants to commit to his style of play. I only see one lock here, but think as many as three of his former players have inside shots at making this squad.

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