Martavis Bryant is tall. No one disputes this fact. But is height Martavis Bryant's best asset? Probably. Height gives an obvious advantage to a wide receiver in the NFL. As tall as he is, though, he's equally short in most other areas of his game.
The measurables he displayed at he 2014 NFL Scouting Combine - excellent speed, outstanding leaping ability, great balance and coordination - were enough to translate spotty film of limited work while in college into a fourth-round draft selection.
The Steelers didn't draft him thinking he was a finished product. Bryant appears to feel the same way, but he's using that as motivation.
According to Chris Bradford of the Beaver County Times, Bryant has a tattoo of the NFL logo on his chest, something he had done a month ago. He has plans to write the words "fourth round" under it, something to serve as a constant reminder of where he was taken, despite those outstanding physical traits.
Bryant appears to be on the verge of being on the game day roster for the first time in his career, likely the result of a combination of his overall development as well as his team's need for a change. The Steelers are scoring touchdowns on 36.8 percent of their red zone trips, the second-lowest percentage in the NFL. They've dipped to 30 percent over their last three games, also the second-worst mark in the league.
To whatever extent Bryant will help drive those numbers upward, that's a big part of the reason the Steelers selected the raw receiver, who graded out as the most athletic wide receiver standing 6-foot-3 or taller by one measurement.
Athleticism helps the well-prepared and mentally strong player succeed. While the athleticism wasn't Bryant's issue, the pounding he's taking in terms of coaching and film study will help increase his overall skill level. Heading into Monday night's game against the Houston Texans, it's unclear how much more developed he is now than he was in the team's rookie minicamp in May. But one thing is clear; the Steelers aren't changing things for the sake of changing them. Something needs to be done and, if utilizing Bryant in five plays or 40 helps them score more points in the red zone, anyone would be all for it.
It seems like his underdog status is something he'll remember as he gets onto the field for the first time this year. He permanently marked his body so he wouldn't forget.