This is obviously a blow to the entire Pittsburgh offense. Since 2015, Roethlisberger has missed four games, and the team's passing yards decreased by 45%, total points decreased by 25% and passing touchdowns decreased by 39%. So all the Pittsburgh receivers take a hit while Roethlisberger is out. Landry Jones will start in the interim. He has a career completion percentage of 57.1% with a good YPA (9.2) and a not-so-good TD-to-INT ratio (3:4). He may work his way into streaming consideration if things break his way, but this is a sizable downgrade at quarterback. Roethlisberger's absence might benefit Bell, who tends to see more carries when his quarterback his out. But last season that increase in carries was offset by a reduced role in the passing game, so it looks like a wash for Bell. UPDATE: Our source in Pittsburgh said that the timeline came from Roethlisberger, who tends to “play up” his injuries so that he looks “tough” when he returns early. Our source said that he was told Roethlisberger is expected to return in Week 9 after the team’s bye. So owners should stream for the next couple of weeks and see how his recovery is going at that point.
Friday, October 7, 2016, 6:27pm
Steelers WR Eli Rogers (toe, out) missed practice all week and is out for Week 5. Sammie Coates and Markus Wheaton figure to play most of the snaps opposite Antonio Brown. Coates looks like a great play this week.
Through three weeks, Brown led the NFL in targets with 40. Roethlisberger has thrown just 35 passes combined to the team's other wide receivers.
That means 53.3 percent of Steelers passes going to wide receivers have gone to Brown.
For comparison's sake, Mike Evans, No. 2 in the NFL in targets, has been targeted on 42.9 percent of Tampa Bay's throws to wide receivers.
The story went on to say in the past three seasons, when Brown had more catches than any player over a three-year span in NFL history, he accounted for 44.4 percent, 48.1 percent and 47.8 percent, respectively, of Steelers wideouts targets. But those teams had dynamic receivers like Martavis Bryant and Emmanuel Sanders.
Friday, September 30, 2016, 8:26pm
Steelers WR Eli Rogers (toe, out) missed practice all week and is out for Week 4. There’s a good chance that Wheaton will play in the slot with Antonio Brown and Sammie Coates outside. Wheaton was very effective in the slot last year. Both he and Coates are Sneaky Starts against the Chiefs.
Thursday, September 29, 2016, 6:45pm
Steelers WR Eli Rogers (toe) missed practice again Thursday. Rogers has a case of turf toe, and if he misses, there’s a good chance that Wheaton will play in the slot with Antonio Brown and Sammie Coates outside. Wheaton was very effective in the slot last year.
Wednesday, September 28, 2016, 6:34pm
Steelers WR Eli Rogers (toe) did not practice Wednesday. Rogers has a case of turf toe, and if he misses, there’s a good chance that Wheaton will play in the slot with Antonio Brown and Sammie Coates outside. Wheaton was very effective in the slot last year.
Thursday, September 15, 2016, 6:05pm
Steelers WR Markus Wheaton (shoulder) took full practice reps again Thursday. It looks like Wheaton will make his return this week. He should start outside and play in most two-WR sets with Antonio Brown.
Wednesday, September 14, 2016, 8:02pm
Antonio Brown is getting some of his money early.
The Steelers franchise receiver restructured his deal, NFL Media's Mike Garafolo reported Wednesday. A photo of Brown looking as though he just finished signing something with his agent Drew Rosenhaus standing over him emerged early in the morning on the wideout's Twitter.
Garafolo is reporting Brown will now earn north of $10 million this year after being due $6.25 million initially. NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport added that the new money (with an $8.975 million signing bonus) comes with the promise of a new deal next year, according to a source with knowledge of the contract.
Steelers beat writer Ed Bouchette was asked how the team's depth chart would shake out. His response:
Last week, Dale Lolley (@dlolleyor) of the Observer-Reporter gave us the heads up about Rogers' likely role in the slot. If this holds, then Coates is being severely overdrafted in the 9th/10th round of fantasy drafts and Rogers is a deep sleeper, especially in PPR formats. We've favored Wheaton in our rankings all summer, the concern is that he'll now be competing directly with Coates for snaps, and if he doesn't carry over the momentum from late last season, he could find himself on the bench. On the plus side, Wheaton is currently starting in a high-octane passing attack and if that continues, he'll be a steal in the 10th/11th round. He'll have to prove that he can consistently get open on the outside, but he's apparently done enough in camp to earn the starting job.
The Steelers’ battery of Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Brown and LeVeon Bell could take the field together Friday night in New Orleans. Precedent says Big Ben and Brown will play at least a few series together, unless coach Mike Tomlin heeds caution.
The wild card is Bell, who has yet to be tackled to the ground in live action since tearing multiple ligaments in his knee on Nov. 1 against Cincinnati. Bell can’t start his season until Week 4 because of a three-game ban for missed drug tests, so the Steelers might want to get him a few reps before then, especially considering how good he's looked in practice work. He's been a full participant every day, though he carries the ball with the proverbial "bubble" designated for star players, especially ones coming off an injury.
Thursday, August 4, 2016, 4:50pm
Brown, who's due $6.25 million in the fifth year of a six-year, $43-million contract, said after Sunday's practice that the franchise should give him a new deal.
The money leaves Brown outside of the top 10 in wide receiver pay despite an NFL-record 265 catches from 2014-15. But the Steelers have a longstanding policy not to renegotiate with non-quarterbacks until a player enters the final year of his deal.
That was twice as many catches as Coates made during a regular season that saw Coates play sparingly after arriving to the team in lackluster condition. Things are different this summer, though.
Offensive coordinator Todd Haley said, via Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports, that the difference in the receiver is “night and day” heading into his second NFL season. Haley said Coates “got his mind right” along with his conditioning over the course of the 2015 season and that working with the scout team benefited him.
If you've been following our news, this isn't the first time we've heard positives about Coates. The timing is pretty great for the Steelers who will need a WR2 option to stand out with Martavis Bryant suspended. Markus Wheaton should also be involved but Coates has a real good chance at fantasy relevance this year.
Thursday, July 28, 2016, 2:22pm
The Bengals reported to Paul Brown Stadium Thursday and as five-time Pro Bowl wide receiver A.J. Green began his sixth training camp without offseason workout partner Calvin Johnson in the league, he says he’s one of a group of about five vying to replace Johnson as the NFL’s best wide receiver.
Green says he’s not surprised Johnson retired after just nine seasons in the league at age 30. After all, he told Green a couple of offseasons ago that he only had about two or three years left in him.
And there are other concerns. Green and wife Miranda are expecting their first child Sept. 30, a son named Easton Ace Green.
Green, who turns 28 Sunday, said he’d like to play anywhere between 11-15 seasons if he’s still performing at a top level, the story said.
Despite being one of the best bargains in the league, Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown will report to training camp Thursday, hopeful and confident that his contract will be addressed before the start of the regular season, sources familiar with the situation told ESPN.
Having Brown in training camp will be one less headache for a Steelers team that already has running back LeVeon Bell facing a four-game suspension and wide receiver Martavis Bryant serving a one-year suspension.
But at some point, Pittsburgh likely will be asked to consider options to compensate Brown like one of the top receivers in the game that he has proved to be, per a source.
Brown is obviously a top fantasy pick in all formats, but it looks like owners won't have to worry about a holdout situation. He's coming off a 136-catch season and is schedule to make 6.25 million this year. He still has two years left on his deal.
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