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Tomlin Doesn’t Sound Too Worried About Missing Bryant in 2016

Divisional Round - Pittsburgh Steelers v Denver Broncos

Calm, cool and collected.

Per usual, that’s the way Steelers coach Mike Tomlin is treating the current situation with wide out Martavis Bryant, and the fact that he’s going to have to sit the entire season after being suspended indefinitely by the NFL for violating the league’s substance-abuse policy.

The team still has the best wide out in the game in Antonio Brown, and also a number of solid pass catchers around Brown, and who knows if the team may look to add another receiver in the draft.

Via Fox Sports, Tomlin said that playing without Bryant in the past has helped, and the team is ready to do it yet again as they try and make another run to the Super Bowl this upcoming season.

“We’re going to throw the ball to the open man,” Tomlin said. “Really, it’s that simple. We’ve played without him in the past, so we’re not overly concerned about playing without him in 2016, to be honest with you. We have talent at the position.”

One player who could benefit the most with Bryant being gone is Markus Wheaton, who last season stepped up and played well when called upon. He averaged 17 yards per catch last year, and in total had 44 catches for 749 yards.

Another player who could have a big second season is Sammie Coates, who had 61 yards in the playoff loss to the Broncos.

No matter what, the team will have to find a way to make up for Bryant, and make sure that the pass game of 2016 doesn’t turn into another game of ‘what if.’

Matt Loede has been in the sports media for over 16 years, with experience covering the MLB, NBA, and NFL. On Sunday’s during football season, you can hear Matt on national networks like Fox Sports Radio, Associated Press, and others. Born and raised in Cleveland Ohio, Matt studies and talks football inside and out, and is anxious to share his thoughts and comments with readers on a daily basis.



  1. DaveB.

    March 22, 2016 at 3:27 pm

    The only comment I have on this kid is this . If hes able to turn his life around and become a person and player that the Steelers can depend on , then I wish him nothing but the best , However , he already has 2 strikes against him and the team says they will not release or trade him . If he screws up again and gets busted then the Rooneys have no choice but to show him the door and move on . In addition , with all the failed and missed tests that hes had , the league will have him under the microscope for the rest of his career . That means hes going to have to be 100% perfect for the rest of his career . Right now , the chances of that happening are slim and none .

  2. DrGeorge

    March 22, 2016 at 5:53 pm

    See the Jesse Pantuosco article for Yahoo Sports on the Patriots pre-draft roster moves. Belichek sent Chandler Jones packing for his first synthetic marijuana violation, a move made easier by his demand for a big salary bump. The Patriots got a veteran O-line man and a second round pick in return. No bad. Some of these moves are based on being able to pyramid values, like Belichek’s trading Richard Sherman and Vince Wilfork in their primes for value + picks. Belichek’s philosophy is that it is better to trade talent too early than hold it too late, a point Tomlin needs to embrace.

    So what does this have to do with the M. Bryant situation? Tomlin could have traded Bryant for high value after his first minor drug violation, as Belichek did with Jones above. Instead, Bryant’s addiction was treated like a minor transgression. Now, Bryant is a liability and any value to the Steelers, if he makes it back at all, is far down the road. In brief, games are not only won by what happens on the field.

    • DaveB.

      March 22, 2016 at 6:33 pm

      Totally agree Dr.George . If Im the Steelers he would have been traded as soon as the first positive test came back . Now there is zero trade value . No team will touch him .

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