The COVID-19 pandemic has put most NFL teams in a salary cap bind. You likely already know the Steelers are stuck between a rock and a hard place when it comes to making any moves this offseason. This also relates to the team’s long list of free agents. If the salary cap does indeed drop by any percentage, the likelihood of the team retaining receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster drops to almost none. Leaving a massive gap in the Steelers slot, the team will need to address the position.
Clearly, the Steelers couldn't afford any of the top free agents. Factoring in the amount of holes they will have to address in the NFL Draft, injecting a rookie into the lineup also seems unlikely. The most believable option to me is a cheep veteran free agent that could be plugged into the line up. That perfect player to me, is former Detroit Lions slot Danny Amendola.
Brady fires to a wide open Amendola for a Patriots’ touchdown. pic.twitter.com/ctO0piRgCp— ɱყℓεร (@SpideyMyles11) August 18, 2019
Amendola will be 35 when the season starts, and to some that may be a concern. However, when you look back at the career of Amendola you will notice his consistency. For nearly 11 straight seasons, Amendola put up between 575-700 yards, and somewhere between 1-3 touchdowns per year. He is the same player now as he was back in 2009. He also is as sure handed as they come, Amendola averages 2 drops per year over the course of the past three seasons. For a unit that had as many drop problems as the Steelers did in 2020, adding a set of mitts like Amendola’s would be much welcomed.
The other major reason bringing in someone like Danny Amendola would benefit the Steelers receiving group is his experience in the league. I have talked about this in the past, but I think this young receiving group could really benefit from having someone who's been in the league for a long time teach them what it means to be a pro athlete.
You can plug Amendola into your offense and realistically expect 50-60 receptions, 600-700 yards, and a couple touchdowns. While this doesn't completely make up for Smith-Schuster’s target share, it allows players like James Washington and Chase Claypool to pick up some more targets as well.
Danny Amendola with a 47-yard touchdown from Matthew Stafford.— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) September 8, 2019
He was WIDE open.pic.twitter.com/YORL0BszYs
As for a contract, I think it is reasonable to expect a one year deal between $3,500,000 & $4,000,000. Amendola had a cap number of $4,968,750 in his final year in Detroit. When you factor in a 10% league wide decrease of the salary cap, coupled with him getting another year older, I think 3.5 million is a reasonable number for his services.
What do you think? Would you be onboard to bring in Danny Amendola on a one year deal in Pittsburgh? Let us know why or why not down in the comments below.