Steelers Rumors: Pit Connected to WR Mike Evans |


Bleacher Report’s Kristopher Knox named head coach Mike Tomlin and the Pittsburgh Steelers a potential landing spot for wide receiver Mike Evans.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers upset the Minnesota Vikings to begin the 2023 season. But Bleacher Report’s Kristopher Knox still projected the Buccaneers to be sellers before the NFL trade deadline.

Their best trade chip is veteran wide receiver Mike Evans. If made available on the trade block, Knox predicted the Pittsburgh Steelers to be one of two potential landing spots for the 3-time Pro Bowl wideout.

“The Pittsburgh Steelers should also eye Evans if he’s available,” Knox wrote. “Pittsburgh’s offense got very little going against San Francisco 49ers in Week 1, and the Steelers lost Diontae Johnson to a hamstring injury.”

Evans had 6 catches for 66 yards and a touchdown in the 20-17 victory against the Vikings. Last season, he led the Buccaneers with 1,124 receiving yards.

Knox named the New York Giants as the other potential landing spot for Evans.

How Mike Evans Potentially Fits With the Steelers

After a very disappointing offensive performance from Pittsburgh in Week 1, and Johnson’s injury news, it make sense to connect the Steelers to Evans.

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Gerry Dulac reported on September 13 that Johnson is expected to miss up to four weeks because of a hamstring injury he sustained in Week 1.

Without Johnson, the Steelers will be missing their top receiver, who has posted at least 86 receptions and 880 yards each of the past three seasons. In 2021, Johnson was a Pro Bowler with 107 receptions, 1,161 yards and 8 touchdowns.

While it could take Evans some time to develop chemistry with quarterback Kenny Pickett, Evans would arrive as clearly the most talented receiver in Pittsburgh’s lineup without Johnson. Evans has reached at least 1,000 receiving yards in each of his nine NFL seasons.

He’s been the model of consistency with that streak. Evans has been very dependable too, missing only 10 games in his 10-year career.

In 2022, the four-time Pro Bowler had 77 receptions for 1,124 yards and 6 touchdowns.

Why Evans to the Steelers Probably Won’t Happen

The Buccaneers did not extend Evans a contract extension before the season began. Therefore, he’s set to be a free agent in 2024.

Unless Tampa Bay offers Evans a contract during the season, it makes sense for the Buccaneers to ship the veteran receiver as a rental player to a contender this fall.

NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reported on September 9, though, that the Buccaneers  do not “plan to move the stalwart wideout this season.”

“Teams are gonna smell blood in the water, already circling around to see if maybe Tampa would part with Evans,” Garafolo said on NFL Network. “But I’m told in no uncertain terms that they have told all teams that we are not interested in trading Evans.”

Even if Evans is made available, there’s no guarantee the Steelers will be interested as Knox suggested they should be.

Johnson’s injury is a blow, but he should be back before the midway point of the season. Even without him, the Steelers have a good mix of talent on offense with young receivers George Pickens and Calvin Austin III.

Veteran Allen Robinson could be a huge help as a steady presence for the receiver room without Johnson too. Robinson led the Steelers with 64 receiving yards in Week 1.

Tight end Pat Freiermuth and running back Najee Harris could potentially see more targets without Johnson as well.

Evans is an intriguing possible addition for the Steelers. But Johnson’s injury may need to be more severe than originally reported for Pittsburgh to feel desperate enough to trade for the 4-time Pro Bowler.

This content was originally published here.

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