Fantasy football: George Pickens’ secret has been revealed, but his relegation is just one of many positives to debut

Pittsburgh – Lots of players shine in pre-season games, but only a fraction when the season begins. It’s one match, but there are encouraging signs of that Steelers Rising recipient George Pickens will be one of the important ones, and that could be sooner rather than later.

His 26-yard drop—a great ambush while tapping into the last bit of property in the back right corner of the end zone on a fine pass from Mason Rudolph—is just the start.

Pickens also stretched his arms out on a road outside Rudolph For a twisting gain of 8 yards He was also the recipient of Mitchell Trubesky’s first pass in the match against Seahawkswon 9 yards on an obstacle.

His traps will attract attention in core fantasy circles, but it’s the other things he’s done – things you didn’t see in the highlights – that should cement him as a potential fantasy rookie sometime this season. things like…

  • Open in other ways ran, including another obstacle, and shallow cross crossing
  • Changing his speed and not being afraid to play against defenders
  • Deftly using his hands to buy himself a little space when landing
  • Punking back defensive in one game and get another body block
  • Running tracks on running plays to engage defensive backs instead of sprinting as other receivers do

“I have to look at the tape to analyze some of those things, but from the playmaker’s perspective his performance was consistent with what we saw in the training settings,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said after the game.

On one night when fellow rookie Kenny Beckett was cheering the crowd on his name to enter the field before being sent home in sheer elation after his touchdown pass won the game, Pickens was the name on the tongues of the Fantasy managers thanks to his galloping skill set as they lined up almost wide .

And it’s not as if the Steelers shy away from using first-year counters. Chase Claypool set a junior franchise record for receiving touchdowns in a season with nine in 2020 and JuJu Smith-Schuster set the rookie record for receiving yards with 917 in 2017. Smith-Schuster even had seven points that season.

“If they are playmakers, we put them in a position to do something,” Tomlin stated of his starters.

A pre-season game shouldn’t be the measure of whether a man can be a squad maker. He will surely score some goals in the Steelers attack, but there are still others – Deontay Johnson, Pat Freymouth, Nagy Harris and Claypool – who will lead the goals. As fun as Beckett’s winning return to the game was, and as cohesive as Trubisky sounded, there were still some quarterback concerns that could prevent everyone involved from reaching their ceiling.

The Steelers can be patient. Fantasy managers have to, too.

It’s not nuts to take Pickens as the Steelers’ second pass off the board in the Drafts (unless you count as Nagy, in which case he’s third). But you must be patient with him. You can’t cut it if it starts slow against BengalsAnd the patriots And the Brownthree defenses have the talent to not only disable him, but also quarterback.

It’s exactly the kind of player you take in the tenth round in rework leagues. Low risk, long term and high reward. Before Claypool (who, frankly, would offer some interesting value if he fell heavily on Pickens), and before Freiermuth (who, frankly, would offer more interesting value than Claypool).

It’s a brighter look in the leagues. The prospect of drafting Pickens with the chance of him being put on a multi-year roster puts him late in the eighth round. He was already the first manager in the junior drafts only, but he’s much closer to fifth overall now.

In Pittsburgh, playmakers are playing. Tomlin said it himself. Once that offense seals its identity and long-term midfield, Pickens should play and play well for a while.

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