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Steelers News: Could the Steelers have found an instant starter in WR Diontae Johnson?

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Time to check on the latest news surrounding the Pittsburgh Steelers.

NCAA Football: Toledo at Miami Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

With the 2019 NFLDraft in the rear view mirror, the Pittsburgh Steelers’ 2019 season is fast approaching, and the news surrounding the black-and-gold is far from over. As the team now turns their attention to more offseason workouts, OTAs and minicamp, there is no shortage of news.

Today in the Black-and-gold links article we take a look at whether 3rd round pick, wide receiver Diontae Johnson, could be a Day 1 starter for the Steelers’ offense in 2019.

Let’s get to the news:

  • We all know the story...he runs routes like Antonio Brown, is hard to jam like Antonio Brown and is a natural pass catcher like Antonio Brown. While no one is expecting Diontae Johnson to be Antonio Brown, could he be a starter from Day 1?

Carter’s Classroom: Johnson an instant starter?

By: Chris Carter, DKPittsburghSports

The Steelers’ drafting of Diontae Johnson added another player into the battle for the team’s No. 2 receiver spot. JuJu Smith-Schuster is the obvious leader of the group. But with James Washington in his second year and Donte Moncrief being a new free-agent acquisition, Johnson will be in a strong position to earn playing time in training camp.

Johnson’s positive traits translate to the NFL and give him a chance to have an instant impact. Let’s go through them to see why the Steelers are excited about him:

Yesterday, Dale Lolley wrote about how confident the Steelers are in Johnson’s “natural” receiving skills. Johnson’s 4.55 time in the 40 and his 5-foot-10 height don’t pop off the charts compared to other receivers in his draft class, which is why his skills are so important.

To read the full article, click HERE


Tim Benz: Father of Steelers draft choice renounces Browns fandom

By: Tim Benz, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

That’s what DeAndre Layne is doing. He’s the father of Justin Layne, the Michigan State cornerback the Steelers drafted in the third round last weekend.

Justin Layne was a star wide receiver at Benedictine High School in Cleveland before enrolling in school in East Lansing.

But his regional ties are not stopping his family’s rooting interests from crossing state lines.

Layne’s dad called into Cleveland sports talk radio station “92.3 The Fan” to make his declaration public—the family now bleeds Black and Gold.

Cleveland wanted a cornerback. But the club liked LSU’s Greedy Williams better. So they took him in the second round instead of Layne.

“They got their guy, which is great, but we have to have a divorce at this point,” Layne said of his relationship with the Browns on the “Carman and Lima” radio show.

To read the full article, click HERE


  • Of the 30 pre-draft visitors the Steelers had leading up to the 2019 NFL Draft, three of those players became draft picks. Also, some jersey number information...

Labriola on Bush, Johnson, jersey numbers

By: Bob Labriola, Steelers.com

To those who like to keep track of such things: Of the Steelers’ 30-some pre-draft visitors, three of them became draft picks: WR Diontae Johnson, CB Justin Layne, and LB Ulysees Gilbert.

Anyway, there are a bunch of jersey numbers the Steelers just don’t issue anymore, and the numbers are the ones you would expect: No. 12, No. 32, No. 52, No. 58, and No. 59 from the 1970s, with No. 36, No. 43, and No. 86 from the more recent group of key players from Super Bowl teams. Both No. 82 and No. 88 have been in circulation rather regularly since John Stallworth and Lynn Swann wore those jerseys, but that can be blamed on the NFL’s rule regarding players at certain positions having to wear certain numbers, and No. 86 could be a victim of that rule as well here sometime soon.

To read the full article, click HERE


  • Explaining why the Steelers currently have more than the 90-man offseason roster...

Asked and Answered: May 2

By: Bob Labriola, Steelers.com

GEORG HACKMACK FROM KARLSRUHE, GERMANY: On Steelers.com, there are 94 players listed on the current roster, but the team is not allowed to have more than 90. So who is not actually on the roster but is listed anyway?

ANSWER: Of those 94 names, there are two who will not count against the 90-player limit. Those two players are Ryan Shazier, who has been placed on the physically unable to perform list, which means he does not count as he continues his rehabilitation; and the other player is Christian Scotland-Williamson, the tight end from the United Kingdom who is part of the NFL’s International Player Pathway. Also, all of the nine draft choices the Steelers added last weekend currently do not count against the 90-player limit because they have yet to sign a contract. When they do sign, if their additions to the roster would put the Steelers over the 90-player limit, then somebody would have to be cut in order to make room for them.

To read the full article, click HERE


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