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Fantasy Football News 2023

Most Recent Fantasy Football News & Updates

The Rams are finalizing a trade to send WR Allen Robinson to the Steelers, pending Robinson passing a physical. No word yet on the compensation, but the Rams probably aren't getting much. Robinson is set to count $18 million against the 2023 salary cap and has been one of the least efficient WRs in the NFL over the past two seasons. He ranked 86th out of 101 qualifying WRs in yards per route run in 2021 and 90th out of 96 last year. Robinson figures to slide in as Pittsburgh's #3 WR behind Diontae Johnson and George Pickens. He's not an exciting fantasy pick. The Rams, meanwhile, are left with Cooper Kupp, Van Jefferson, Tutu Atwell, and Ben Skowronek atop the WR depth chart. We'll see if they add to the position.

Update: Per ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Steelers are getting Robinson and the 251st overall pick of this year's draft in exchange for the 234th overall pick. The Rams are also paying $10.25 million of Robinson’s salary. The Steelers will pay the remaining $5 million. If you needed confirmation that Robinson's tank is empty, there you go.

Steelers TE Pat Freiermuth tallied 7 catches for 66 yards among 8 targets in Saturday night's win over the Raiders. The numbers marked a big rebound from his target-less Week 15 at Carolina. It was Freiermuth's most targets and receptions since Week 11. The TE trailed only RB Najee Harris in targets for the game. WR Diontae Johnson added 5-64 receiving on 7 looks. WR George Pickens caught all 5 of his targets for 57 yards and the go-ahead TD. Pittsburgh gets a Week 17 rematch with Baltimore, which has played the run much tougher than the pass for most of the season.

Steelers QB Kenny Pickett (concussion) will start this weekend's game vs. the Raiders, HC Mike Tomlin said Tuesday. It sounds like Pickett still has 1 more step to pass protocol, so we'll keep an eye on his practice participation this week. Vegas ranks 30th in adjusted fantasy points allowed to QBs, but Pickett hasn't shown enough this season to be more than a mid-range QB2 for Week 16.

Steelers WR Diontae Johnson caught all 10 of his targets for 98 yards in Sunday's win over the Panthers. He drew 45.5% of QB Mitchell Trubisky's pass attempts, tallying 58.8% of the team's receptions and 54.7% of the yards. He was the only Steeler to catch more than 2 passes. WR George Pickens checked in next with 2 catches for 53 yards among 5 targets. WR Steven Sims was the only other Pittsburgh player to see more than 1 target. We'll see whether QB Kenny Pickett can make it back for Week 16.

Steelers WR Diontae Johnson remained allergic to the end zone in Sunday's loss to the Ravens. He did lead the team in targets (8), receptions (6) and receiving yards (82). TE Pat Freiermuth followed with 6 targets, catching 3 for 33 yards and a TD. WR George Pickens drew just 3 looks -- tied with 2 others for 4th -- but caught all 3 for 78 yards. Pittsburgh heads to Carolina in Week 15, likely without QB Kenny Pickett (concussion).

Steelers WR Diontae Johnson racked up 11 targets among 28 Kenny Pickett pass attempts in Sunday's win over the Falcons. That marked a 39.3% target share, in a game that saw no other Steeler top 5 looks. TE Pat Freiermuth finished 2nd, catching 3 of 5 targets for 76 yards. RB Jaylen Warren was the only other Pittsburgh player to catch more than 1 pass. WRs George Pickens and Steven Sims matched Warren at 2 targets. Pickens caught just 1 ball for 2 yards. Next for Pittsburgh comes the season's 1st matchup with the Ravens, who have been playing the run tougher than the pass.

Steelers WR George Pickens caught 4 of 6 targets for 83 yards and a TD in Sunday's loss to the Bengals. He had 2 other targets wiped out by penalties, 1 an offensive hold and the other a defensive PI. Pickens also dropped a 2nd-half deep ball that would have added significant yardage to his line. WR Diontae Johnson matched Pickens' 4 catches but tallied just 21 yards. Next comes a potential pass-funnel matchup with the Colts and then the soft Atlanta defense.

Steelers TE Pat Freiermuth doubled his nearest teammate in targets in Sunday's loss to the Bengals. His 12 looks accounted for 28.6% of Pittsburgh's total pass attempts. Freiermuth's 8 catches also doubled the nearest Steeler, while his 79 yards trailed WR George Pickens' team lead. It's the 2nd 8-catch game among the past 4 for Freiermuth, who has seen 7+ targets in 4 straight and 7 of his 8 healthy outings for the year.

Steelers WR Diontae Johnson caught 4 balls for 63 yards on 5 targets to lead a lackluster passing effort in Sunday's win over the Saints. TE Pat Freiermuth tied Johnson for the team lead in catches. RB Jaylen Warren and WR George Pickens checked in next at 3 receptions apiece, with rookie TE Connor Hayward the only other Steeler to catch multiple passes. Week 11 brings a Bengals defense that has been better than New Orleans'.

The Bears are trading a 2nd-round pick to the Steelers in exchange for WR Chase Claypool, ESPN's Field Yates reports. It's a steep price for a guy who's been mostly disappointing since a flashy rookie season. Claypool ranks 52nd among 62 qualifying WRs in Pro Football Focus' 2022 receiving grades. His 1.03 yards per route run ranks 57th -- a bit behind teammates Diontae Johnson (1.16) and George Pickens (1.14). Of course, Claypool is still just 24 and brings a 6'4, 238-pound frame with 99th percentile athleticism. There's still intriguing fantasy upside here. Chicago is obviously a rough landing spot, though. QB Justin Fields has been better lately but remains a question mark as a passer. And this is the league's run-heaviest offense. The Bears rank dead last with just 20.0 pass attempts per game. That's climbed to 22.8 over the last 5 weeks -- but that's still not a workable number for Claypool. Consider him a WR4 unless we get a significant increase in passing volume from Chicago. Claypool's departure from Pittsburgh should mean more targets for Johnson, Pickens and TE Pat Freiermuth.

The Steelers managed just 196 passing yards on 40 attempts (4.9 per attempt) in Sunday's lopsided loss to the Eagles. QB Kenny Pickett threw for 191 yards and an INT while taking 6 sacks. WR Diontae Johnson led the team with 9 targets, catching 5 for just 35 yards. TE Pat Freiermuth checked in 2nd with 7 targets and led the team with 57 receiving yards (on 4 catches). WR Chase Claypool posted a 4-45 receiving line on 6 targets. Rookie WR George Pickens managed 0 catches on 3 targets. The team's lone TD came on a 1-yard pass from Claypool to FB Derek Watt. The Week 9 bye will probably be good for this team.

Steelers QB Kenny Pickett threw for just 257 yards, 1 TD and 3 INTs in Sunday night's loss to the Dolphins. The 72.7% completion rate was nice, but the mere 5.8 yards per pass attempt reveals that the rookie passer couldn't get anything going deep. WR Chase Claypool said after the game that he believes the offense needs "more go balls" to take advantage of the WR talent. We can't argue with that, though it remains to be seen whether Pickett can support his wideouts in that area. Claypool followed a strong Week 6 with a pedestrian 5-41 receiving line on 8 targets. WR Diontae Johnson caught 5 of his team-high 10 targets for 42 yards. WR George Pickens caught all 6 of his looks for 61 yards, including an athletic grab in the end zone for the team's only TD. Pittsburgh gets a tough matchup at Philadelphia in Week 8.

Steelers WR Chase Claypool caught all 7 of his targets in Sunday's win over the Buccaneers to lead the team in receptions and yards (96). He also snagged 1 of Pittsburgh's 2 TD passes. Claypool tied WR Diontae Johnson for the team target lead, with rookie WR George Pickens just 1 target behind. The trio remained close together in targets as well, with all finishing in the 30-34 range.

WR Diontae Johnson drew a team-high 13 targets in QB Kenny Pickett's starting debut Sunday at Buffalo. Pittsburgh attempted a season-high 52 passes in the lopsided loss, but Johnson's looks marked a 25% share. He caught 5 for 60 yards. Chase Claypool followed with 9 targets, catching 5 for 50 yards. Rookie George Pickens led the team in receptions (6) and receiving yards (83) while ranking 3rd in targets (8). Pickens' rate of targets per route (16.7%) was actually down from the previous 2 games: 30.8% and 24.1%.

The Steelers are moving forward with Kenny Pickett as their starting QB, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. It's the logical move after the rookie led Pittsburgh to a pair of TDs in the 2nd half of Sunday's loss to the Jets. Pickett tossed 3 INTs in that one -- but 1 went of TE Pat Freiermuth's hands and the other was an end-of-game Hail Mary. Pickett sits 12th among 34 QBs in Pro Football Focus' Week 4 passing grades (with the Monday night game still to go). He's only an option in 2-QB fantasy leagues for now, but we think he'll be an upgrade over QB Mitchell Trubisky for this Pittsburgh offense. Of course, it'll be tough sledding this weekend in Buffalo

Steelers WR Diontae Johnson led the team with 12 targets in the opener, claiming 31.6% of Pittsburgh's total pass attempts. Johnson caught 7 for 55 yards. WR Chase Claypool drew 6 looks, catching 4 for a mere 18 yards. Rookie George Pickens followed with 3, catching 1 but drawing defensive PI to negate a 4th target. That trio operated as the team's clear top 3 WRs. We'll see whether the QB play can improve to enhance the output going forward. Claypool added 6 rushing attempts for a team-high 36 yards, with a (supposedly minor) ankle injury limiting RB Najee Harris' playing time.

Steelers WR Diontae Johnson (shoulder) was non-committal on his availability for this weekend's opener vs. the Bengals when asked on Wednesday. "I'm doing everything I can and get back to the guys one day at a time," he said. Johnson banged up his shoulder in the preseason finale and said he could not have returned to that game even if it had been the regular season. We'll track his practice participation over the next few days. Johnson's absence would obviously be a big boost to the target projections on George Pickens, Chase Claypool and Pat Freiermuth.

ESPN's Brooke Pryor says the Steelers are "likely to push the ball down the field more than in recent years." That would obviously be good for the fantasy football upside for everyone in the passing game (except maybe RB Najee Harris), but it would be an especially positive development for rookie WR George Pickens and 3rd-year WR Chase Claypool. Pickens has generated seemingly nonstop buzz in camp, while Claypool has displayed his downfield talent through 2 pro seasons. Both look attractive in reserve territory of fantasy football drafts.

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