It is no secret that when wide receivers Markus Wheaton and Martavis Bryant are on their game, the Pittsburgh Steelers offense is virtually unstoppable. Both Wheaton and Bryant have been up and down this season. The question remains can they put together a string of positive games together? The answer is that the Steelers need them to do so.
Wheaton has shown he possesses quickness but has not had a 100 yard or multiple touchdown games in his NFL career. His performance as a deep-threat receiver leaves a lot to be desired. However, by scoring in consecutive weeks against the Baltimore Ravens and Indianapolis Colts, Wheaton showed that when he is able to score, the Steelers offense opens up for other players. Wheaton must show going forward that he can find the end zone more consistently. One area he needs to focus on is consistency in the middle of the field.
Until Bryant became a important part of the offense, Antonio Brown faced multiple double-teams and was the only receiver to make any real difference in the offense outside of tight end Heath Miller. Clearly, Bryant is the best deep threat in the Steelers offense currently has outside of Brown, and many fans have clamored for Bryant to start due to the fact that he has made more “splash plays” than Wheaton. Going forward in weeks 15-17, Bryant needs to prove that he is more than a deep threat if the offense plans to stay on a roll. Bryant’s speed and agility has shown that he can catch screens and short passes and make plays, with that ability, it would be great to see at least three deep passes thrown to him per game.
If Wheaton can show he can work the 5-20 yard area, and Brown continues to do his thing on the other side of the field, it will give quarterback Ben Roethlisberger an opportunity to find Bryant. It isn’t just about making splash plays, but a complete receiver set. If the Steelers get more production from Bryant and Wheaton, this offense will go a roll that could very easily lead this team into February.