Pittsburgh Steelers Saga Aftermath

The 2018 season for the Pittsburgh Steelers was a weird one. The story of the season for the Steelers was their star running back Le’Veon sitting the entire season because of a contract dispute. Meanwhile on the field, the Steelers got off to a good start going 7-2-1 in their first 10 games of the season. Howevers, they ended the season going 2-4 and missing out on the playoffs completely. The offseason saw some changes made for the Steelers as Le’Veon Bell would sign with the New York Jets and star receiver Antonio Brown was traded to the Oakland Raiders. Now that all sides have moved on we now ask the question of who will have the better season or better yet who will be better long term.

As previously mentioned, Antonio Brown was traded this past March for two draft picks that turned out to be wide receiver Diontae Johnson and tight end Zach Gentry. Brown will look to bring the Raiders back to the postseason pairing with Pro Bowl quarterback Derek Carr. The Raiders have not been the same since Derek Carr went down with an ACL injury during his spectacular 2016 season as they have gone 10-22 in the past two seasons. The Raiders struggled on offense last season as they only had 19 receiving touchdowns on the season which ranked 24th on the season as well as just nine rushing touchdowns ranking 27th. Last season, Antonio Brown put up 1,297 receiving yards and a league leading 15 receiving touchdowns. Antonio Brown will certainly help improve the Raiders offensive woes from last season hoping to translate to wins for Raider Nation.

Meanwhile, Le’Veon Bell has a much more uphill battle bringing the Jets back to relevance. Le’Veon Bell will return to the field after sitting out the entire 2018 season with a contract dispute with the Steelers. Bell’s decision was met with criticism as he accepted less money to sign with the Jets that he sat out the 2018 season to receive from the Steelers. Nevertheless, Bell will play for a Jets team that has not made the playoffs since their 2010 AFC Championship game appearance. The Jets have not had a 1000 yard rusher since 2015 which was also the last time they have had a winning record. Last season, the Jets finished 26th in rushing yards and 23rd in the league in rushing touchdowns. It will be interesting to see how Bell comes back after sitting down an entire season and if he is able improve the Jets rushing attack.

Although the Steelers lost two of not only their best offensive weapons, but two of the best offensive players in the NFL, they still have a solid team. Led by future hall of fame quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, the Steelers will have James Conner in the backfield for his second full season starting for the team. Conner had a spectacular 2018 season with 973 rushing yards and 12 rushing touchdowns while also having 497 receiving yards leading to a pro bowl appearance. The Steelers will also have pro bowl receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster who also had a very good 2018 season with a team-leading 1,426 receiving yards and seven receiving touchdowns including a 97-yard touchdown that was the longest of any receiver last season. While the Steelers offense may not be as good as in year’s past, they still have the pieces to be amongst the best offenses in the NFL.

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