Not every player can be a Pro Bowler but these guys could use a bump in production in the back half of the year.
It can be challenging looking for holes for an undefeated team. With players like T.J. Watt or Ben Roethlisberger drawing most of the limelight it can be easy to overlook some members of the roster that are not having the best season. The following five guys have struggled either through injury, lack of opportunity, or just down right lack of production. It’s not to say they can’t turn their year around but they’re going to need to do it quick. Let’s get to the list.
Ulysees Gilbert III was named BTSC’s Redman award winner for making the biggest impact amongst virtual unknowns at training camp. The buzz was high on UG3, that was until the season started and he rarely got to play even when healthy. Now on the injured reserve after re-agravating a back injury that cut his 2019 season short, we can only hope we haven’t already seen the end of Gilbert in Pittsburgh.
The Steelers chose to pick up McDonald’s $5 million dollar option this past offseason, which at the time was a little surprising considering the Steelers salary cap situation. Once on the field in 2020 McDonald was completely outshined by Eric Ebron, and his statistics have suffered. Through nine games McDonald has only mustered 9 catches, 61 yards, and 0 touchdowns. Not great for a guy getting paid like a teams top tight end.
3. Derek Watt
Derek Watt actually inspired me to make this list. The middle Watt brother is the second highest paid fullback in the NFL this season, but yet the Steelers just flat out choose not to feature him in the offense. Sure, he missed some time with an injury but even before he was injured he was used sparingly. So far Watt hasn’t touched the ball once as a member of the black and gold. Which might be ok for any average fullback, but when you’re paying for a premium type player you should give him some opportunities with the ball.
Jaylen Samuels has seen himself tumble all the way to the bottom of the Steelers running back depth chart. Rookie, Anthony McFarland already plays considerably more snaps than Samuels, and it legitimately makes me questions the Steelers holding onto a fourth running back on the active roster. The third year pro might be playing his final games with the Steelers in 2020 if the organization keeps him relegated to the bench.
How many of you even remembered that Chris Wormley was on this team? When he was moved from the injured reserved list to the designated to return list I let out an audible “Oh yeah, that guy”. Since the Steelers acquired Wormley in a trade with the arch rival Baltimore Ravens he has been buried under the Steelers defensive line depth, and even when he’s healthy rarely plays. For a player on an expiring deal it’s hard to understand why the Steelers even made this move. As for the Ravens they were able to trade their own fifth round pick for Calaias Campbell. I can firmly say the two franchises didn’t get the same value out of its fifth rounders.
What do you think? Did I get this list 100% correct? Let us know why/why not down in the comments below!