Pittsburgh Steelers

Season W/L ATS O/U Pass Yds Rush Yds Pass% Run% 3rd D
2016-17 11-5 9-7 6-10 3,882 1,600 60.14% 39.86% 41%
2015-16 10-6 9-6-1 6-10 4,603 1,724 61.62% 38.38% 39%
2014-15 11-5 9-7 9-7 4,825 1,752 61.23% 38.77% 45%
2013-14 8-8 9-7 8-8 4,017 1,383 61.49% 38.51% 37%
2012-13 8-8 6-9-1 7-9 3,787 1,537 59.73% 40.27% 41%

Season Outlook

The Steelers are loaded with fantasy talent heading into 2017 and will be a hotbed for many fantasy owners begin crafting their team. Starting with their scheme, head coach Mike Tomlin designed plays specifically for star WR Antonio Brown. QB Ben Roethlisberger will continue to look downfield and through the middle of the field to Antonio Brown, which immediately increases Roethlisberger's fantasy value. Offensive coordinator Todd Haley will also run the ball with the shifty and elusive Le'Veon Bell to set up play action fakes while utilizing Bell out of the backfield. The team hasn't seen a massive overhaul on the coaching staff the past few seasons, so their diverse zone run game that allows Bell to run inside or outside the tackles has resulted in Bell averaging just under 5 yards per carry last season. Brown and Bell are consensus top-5 overall draft picks in fantasy this offseason, with either viewed as a solid No. 1 overall pick. Brown led NFL WRs in fantasy points by a receiver in 2016 with 307.3 fantasy points. His 1,284 receiving yards was the 5th best mark in the NFL and his 105.7 yards per game cemented his value as a top-3 fantasy player last season. Bell and Cardinals RB Johnson are projected to be the two best fantasy RBs due to their unique ability to receive a pass behind the line of scrimmage and tear it up the field for big yard. Bell ranked second on the Steelers with 616 receiving yards on 75 receptions. He was also a beast running the ball on the gridiron, ranking second in yards per game on the ground with 105.7.

Player Outlooks & Draft Analysis

Quarterbacks

Ben Roethlisberger Bust

Retirement rumors swirled around Roethlisberger this offseason, as the now 35 year old quarterback has dealt with a multitude of injuries over his career. But even though his reputation for playing hurt has become the stuff of NFL legend, Big Ben has played a full 16 games just twice in past 8 seasons. The drafting of Josh Dobbs also raised some eyebrows, as the rookie quarterback has the requisite skill set to be an NFL starter, he just needs time to develop. Still, the production is there for the veteran quarterback, and he's going to threaten top ten fantasy status again this season. The Steelers also get Martavis Bryant back from suspension and added big bodied wideout Ju Ju Smith-Schuster in the draft. Poor play and inconsistency plagued the wide receivers so badly last season that Le'Veon Bell effectively served as the WR2 for Roethlisberger for most of the second half, trailing only Antonio Brown in targets. Health is going to be the biggest risk for Roethlisberger's future fantasy prospects, but a best guess is that he sticks around for at least a couple more seasons.

Joshua Dobbs

Dobbs makes an intriguing long term prospect, particularly for Roethlisberger owners in dynasty formats. Landry Jones is pretty clearly not the future franchise quarterback in Pittsburgh, but he should again assume backup duties this season. Dobbs is the far superior prospect. He has NFL size, a big time arm, and very real running ability outside the pocket. Although he probably needs to add a little weight to a somewhat lanky frame, all the tools are there. He was a hot pre-draft prospect, as his combination of smarts (quite literally a rocket scientist-he was an aerospace engineering major at Tennessee) and physical tools make him an ideal developmental prospect. If he can clean up accuracy issues and footwork, improve his decision making, and take care of the football, we may look back and say the Steelers stole one here in a few years.

Running Backs

Le'Veon Bell

A usage monster in the Pittsburgh offense, health and an unresolved contract situation seem to be the only things standing in the way of what should be another dominant season for Bell. Frankly, the Steelers probably hope they don't need to lean on Bell the way they did when he returned last season, as Martavis Bryant's reinstatement and the addition of JuJu Smith-Schuster should help solidify a passing game that relied heavily on Bell after top wideout Antonio Brown. Despite playing in just 12 games, Bell managed to rack up 336 offensive touches and nearly eclipsed 2000 total yards, even in his shortened season. Expect the Steelers to ratchet this back a little, as that would have equated to nearly 450 touches in a full 16 games. He's also now missed or been severely limited in playoff games in back to back seasons. And for a team trying to make one final run with Ben Roethlisberger, the Steelers would be wise not to push him as hard early in the season and perhaps offload some of the rushing work to third round rookie James Connor. Even with a tick down in workload, Bell would remain a top tier fantasy stud.

James Conner

Veteran DeAngelo Williams was sent packing this offseason, and despite being a top tier fantasy running back, Le'Veon Bell has only played all 16 games once in his four year NFL career. Obviously the Steelers thought Conner was up to the task, as they spent an early third round pick on the former ACC Player of the Year. There's no doubting Conner's resilience, as his story of beating cancer and returning to the field last season is well documented. But most teams didn't have him ranked nearly as high on their draft boards. Still, one has to think the Steelers know exactly what they're getting in the former Pitt Panther and likely view him as more than the short yardage and goal line option he's often been pegged as.

Wide Receivers

Antonio Brown

As long as Big Ben is around, Brown seems like an absolute lock to maintain top five wide receiver value. But heading into his age 29 season the days of being the top fantasy wide receiver are probably behind him. He s still a dominant pass catcher, but with Le Veon Bell as the focal point of the offense, the Steelers expecting Martavis Bryant to be reinstated, the addition of Ju Ju Smith-Schuster in the draft, and an improving Steelers defense, it s clear that Pittsburgh is trying to surround their star receiver and franchise quarterback with enough talent to open things up across the offense. He s still a stud wideout that is going to deliver for fantasy owners, but it s unlikely we see a return to the 2014 and 2015 stat lines or 129-1698-13 & 136-1834-10 respectively. After all, that s what elevated him to the territory of the elite.

Martavis Bryant

A size-speed freak that looked like he would need some time coming into the league, Bryant flashed upside in year one and wowed with his pure athletic ability. But he started off year number two in a bad way with a four game suspension due to a substance-abuse violation and then lost all of 2016 when he tested positive again. By all accounts he s said and done all the right things, and recently was reinstated for preseason games and practices so a full reinstatement shouldn t be far behind. Obviously, given his past transgressions he s not without risk. But from a talent perspective he s dripping with upside and could materialize into a top tier wideout playing alongside Antonio Brown. Re-entering the league he s a high risk, high reward player who won t turn 26 until late in the season.

JuJu Smith-Schuster

For a team that already has Antonio Brown and expects Martavis Bryant to be reinstated any day, Smith-Schuster brings a physical presence to the Steelers receiver position that figures to be a perfect addition. He's a football player through and through and an absolutely warrior, with or without the football in his hands. He lacks the sort of speed and explosiveness that NFL teams covet, but he doesn't need much separation to win football and he does all the little things well. With so many mouths to feed in Pittsburgh, targets are going to be the real question. But if he can prove himself early on then he can have success at the NFL level as an Anquan Boldin-type wideout, a player to whom he often draws comparisons.

Tight Ends

Jesse James

There's a reason the Steelers added Ladarius Green last offseason, and it was largely the lack of a real receiving weapon on the tight end depth chart when Heath Miller retired. But when Green's Steelers' career ended prematurely by injuries, James filled in well enough last season that Pittsburgh seems willing to trust him in a three down role. That said the addition of big bodied rookie wideout Ju Ju Smith-Schuster and the anticipated reinstatement of Martavis Bryant means there are likely to be far fewer targets coming his way this season. James should see some short yardage and red zone work, but his blocking ability is what will keep him on the field.

Vance McDonald Injury Update

McDonald has never lived up to his second round selection, and now he's playing for a regime that has openly admitted to trying to deal him this offseason. George Kittle was drafted to take his spot, and even if he retains his role as the starter to open the season, if past history is any indication, he'll miss time at some point and open the door for Kittle. His insane contract extension makes him difficult to trade so he's going to have to impress Kyle Shanahan and company to retain any real long term value.

Player Updates

Injury Update JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR - Smith-Schuster out for Week 12
24 Nov 2017 - 3:18pm

Updating an earlier report, JuJu Smith-Schuster (hamstring) is out for Week 12 against the Packers. - From Rotoworld.

Injury Update JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR - JuJu Smith-Schuster in concussion protocol
24 Oct 2017 - 3:03pm

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said JuJu Smith-Schuster is in the concussion protocol. - From Rotoworld.

Player Update Martavis Bryant, WR - Martavis Bryant will play Sunday vs. Jaguars
8 Oct 2017 - 10:51am

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports Martavis Bryant (questionable, illness) will play Sunday against the Jaguars. - From Rotoworld.

Injury Update Martavis Bryant, WR - Martavis Bryant questionable with illness
7 Oct 2017 - 4:04pm

Martavis Bryant questionable with an illness for Week 5 against the Jaguars. - From Rotoworld.

Player Update Fitzgerald Toussaint, RB - Steelers part ways with reserve RB Toussaint
1 Sep 2017 - 8:40pm

Steelers waived RB Fitzgerald Toussaint. - From Rotoworld.

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