Grading Steelers WR George Pickens 2022 season

When wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster left the Pittsburgh Steelers for the Kansas City Chiefs, wide receiver became a draft need for the Steelers. And despite being one of the best teams at scouting and finding hidden gems at wide receiver, the selection of former Georgia star George Pickens might go down as the best.

The Steelers drafted Pickens in the second round despite many pundits having a first-round on him. This was due to multiple factors including concerns with maturity.

How good was Pickens in 2022? He showed enough in the first half of the season to make Chase Claypool expendable and allowed the Steelers to make a huge trade for a high draft pick.

Pickens’ game isn’t perfect by any means and his season was a product of the rest of the offense but there’s no denying he has some special gifts. Pickens had multiple highlight-reel quality catches during the season and was among the best receivers in the NFL in contested catches.

Pickens finished third on the team with 52 receptions. He was second on the team with 802 receiving yards and led the team with 15.4 yards per catch and four receiving touchdowns. The tandem of Pickens and quarterback Kenny Pickett is the future in Pittsburgh and there are big things coming.

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Pickens has some things we want to see him get better at in the offseason, mainly getting open and creating separation. His skills after the catch are elite and we want to see more of that. But for this season, he gets an easy A for what he accomplished. Cast your vote and let us know what grade you give Pickens for his rookie performance.

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Story originally appeared on Steelers Wire