Pittsburgh Steelers

Pittsburgh Steelers

AFC North

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport is reporting Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell will report to the team next Friday. (Source: Ian Rapoport on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: On his personal Twitter account, Bell tweeted that he will report to the Steelers on Sept. 1, Rapoport is confirming. As expected, Bell is not holding out and will play the 2017 season under the fully guaranteed franchise tender, which he has yet to sign. Expect Bell to officially sign the tag upon his arrival to the team next Friday.

Category: Rumors

Jesse James is expected to enter the season as the Steelers' starting tight end. (Source: Steelers.com)

Fantasy Impact: James topped the depth chart following the release of disappointment Ladarius Green, and nothing has changed that this preseason. Xavier Grimble was expected to push James, but Grimble hasn't performed consistently this preseason. James may catch a few touchdowns, but he won't see the targets to be a fantasy-relevant TE this season.

The Steelers defence played well in their second preseason game, holding the Falcons to just one touchdown and 318 yards of offence on the night. Safety Jordan Dangerfield added two picks for the D while the front seven provided four sacks. Second-year return man Trey Williams also returned a punt 64 yards to the house to bolster the Steelers weak offence.

Fantasy Impact: The defence didn't look as strong as in the first week, but their bend-not-break performance was enough to get the Steelers another preseason W. Trey Williams may have cemented himself a roster spot thanks to his punt return touchdown.

Category: Game Recaps

James Conner finally got his first NFL preseason action and the inspirational rookie RB rushed for 98 yards on 20 carries and caught one pass out of four targets for three yards.

Fantasy Impact: Connor did well with his 4.9 ypc, displaying both speed and agility, and most importantly that he's overcome the shoulder injury that caused him to miss camp time. Connor's only issues came in the passing game where he dropped two catchable passes, leaving a sizable chunk of yards on the field. He worked behind Fitzgerald Toussaint in the game but severely outproduced him. Connor should secure backup RB duties in an offense with a tremendous offensive line and RB pedigree. He'll once again get a heavy dose of work in preseason game three, with starting RB Le'Veon Bell expected to still be holding out for a long term deal.

Category: Game Recaps

Pittsburgh Steelers WR Justin Hunter hauled in 3-of-7 targets for 16 yards and a touchdown in Sunday's win over the Falcons.

Fantasy Impact: Hunter has supposedly shined in preseason action with his new team, and was heavily targeted in this contest. Although he only corralled 3 of his 7 targets, he seemed to be open more often than not, and also fought for a 6-yard touchdown in the 4th quarter. With Antonio Brown, Martavis Bryant, Eli Rogers, and JuJu Smith-Schuster seemingly safe, Hunter will have to put together another strong showing in the next week or two if he wants a shot to crack the Steelers' talented WR depth chart. He has the talent to do it.

Category: Game Recaps

Pittsburgh Steelers WR Martavis Bryant caught 2-of-3 targets for 20 yards in Sunday's preseason victory over the Falcons.

Fantasy Impact: After sitting out the entire 2016 season due to suspension, Bryant returned to the field with Josh Dobbs starting at QB. He lost yardage on a short pass early in the contest, but showed his trademark athleticism later with a 23-yard reception down the sideline. With Ben Roethlisberger under center at the start of the 2017 season, Bryant's upside is enormous, as long as he stays healthy and out of trouble.

Category: Game Recaps

Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker T.J. Watt has impressed his teammates and coaches so far in training camp. The rookie logged two sacks in the team's preseason opener this past Friday and, according to linebackers coach Joey Porter, is under consideration to open the year as one of the team's starting outside linebackers.

Fantasy Impact: Watt, the younger brother of Houston's star defender J.J. Watt, appears ready to take over the starting job while the team moves veteran James Harrison to a part-time role. Watt is a top-10 rookie linebacker in IDP leagues.

Category: Game Recaps

Pittsburgh Steelers WR Cobi Hamilton caught 2-of-2 targets for a game-high 72 yards and a touchdown in Friday's preseason game against the Giants.

Fantasy Impact: Hamilton's receptions were both chunk-yardage gains, one good for 44 yards, and the other a 28-yard score in the second quarter. With a crowded WR depth chart in Pittsburgh, Hamilton's roster spot is far from a lock, but this showing will only help his chances. He'll look to play another strong game next Sunday against the Falcons.

Category: Game Recaps

Pittsburgh Steelers K Chris Boswell made 2-of-2 field goal attempts and hit a pair of extra points in Friday's preseason game versus the Giants.

Fantasy Impact: Boswell's solid kicking seems to have carried over from his 2015 and 2016 seasons. In one of the NFL's highest-scoring offenses, he'll have a great chance at finishing this season as a top-10 kicker option in fantasy football.

Category: Game Recaps

Pittsburgh Steelers rookie WR JuJu Smith-Schuster left Friday's preseason opener against the Giants after suffering what was diagnosed as a concussion.

Fantasy Impact: Smith-Schuster caught one ball for four yards and had one rush for nine yards before exiting the contest. It's a disappointing outcome after Steeler Nation and the fantasy football community alike were eager to see what the second round selection was capable of doing at the pro level. Smith-Schuster will have eight days to get cleared in time for Week 2 of preseason action, when the Steelers take on the Falcons next Sunday.

Category: Injury Updates, Game Recaps

Pittsburgh Steelers beat writer Jeremy Fowler is reporting quarterback Ben Roethlisberger "is making a compelling case for his potential retirement" in the 2018 offseason. "Just all those things combined -- being healthy, being able to play catch with my kids. I feel good mentally, I know this new study that came out that 90 percent [of NFL] players' brains who were studied had CTE," Roethlisberger said via ESPN. "There's a lot of scary things, and I think my wife would be OK if I hung it up, too. But I still love the guys, I still love the game, so it was right for me to come back and give it everything I have this year." (Source: Jeremy Fowler on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: It appears Roethlisberger is pondering retirement once again. Not only has he contemplated it in years past, but just as recently as the early portion of the 2017 offseason following the Steelers loss to the Patriots in the Divisional Round of the Playoffs, the 35-year-old was undecided on returning for the upcoming season. Although he is playing this year, it could his last, especially in the wake of the recent CTE reports which stated "90 percent [of NFL] players' brains who were studied" had the brain disease. Per Fowler, CTE will factor into Roethlisberger's decision on whether or not to retire in 2018.

Category: Rumors

ESPN's Adam Schefter is reporting Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Sammie Coates (ankle) will miss the start of training camp after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery. (Source: Adam Schefter on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Coates, who has battled injuries that include his finger, hand and groin since the start of 2016, will miss the beginning of training camp after getting his knee scoped this week. Although the 24-year-old wide out is currently slated as the Steelers' WR4, he could find himself competing for a job and on the proverbial roster bubble as the highly-touted rookie, Ju Ju Smith-Schuster, could push him for his role.

Category: Injury Updates

Despite being traded or waived from three separate teams in 2016, Knile Davis now hangs his hat in Pittsburgh. His one-year deal is worth $775,000 and doesn't carry high expectations for the fifth-year back. However, that isn't to say he doesn't carry them himself. Davis recently stated, "...I'm very confident. I know what's going on, on and off the field, the business side of it. It's like a coming back party. I'd like to redeem myself, for sure." (Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

Fantasy Impact: The journeyman has never been an impact player, but he is looking at an opportuinty to carve out a pivotal role on a playoff projected team. Given the risk-to-reward ratio is far off in regards to Antonio Brown, Davis will compete with Demarcus Ayers and Fitz Toussaint for the role of return-man. The Steelers finally have multiple options at kick/punt return, so it may be safe to expect an increase in productivity.

Category: Rumors

The Steelers third-round selection, Cameron Sutton, is already making noise. While it is far too early to expect him to start this year, Sutton is extremely versatile and will likely contribute on defense at some point in the season. A large deal of emphasis has been placed on the versatility of the defense, more specifically on man-coverage. Defense backs coach Carnell Lake has hinted that Sutton "...is a good attempt, especially in the third-round, of getting someone who can help us do that." Sutton's ball-skills are gleaming and this comes with little surprise, as he is the all-time leader in pass deflections at The University of Tennessee. (Source: Observer-Reporter)

Fantasy Impact: Artie Burns and Ross Cockrell are expected to begin the season as the outside cornerbacks, with a sprinkle of veteran William Gay (but mostly in the nickel). Cockrell has managed to make a name for himself in Pittsburgh after being released by the Buffalo Bills, but the Steelers have proven they are not shy of allowing rookies to make an early impact. Trends would suggest that William Gay will be the odd man out if Sutton can live up to the hype. Granted, it is noteworthy that the Steelers also have free agent signing Coty Sensabaugh, former second-round selection Senquez Golson, and fellow rookie Brian Allen to compete for playing time. Steelers Nation can be excited about their defensive secondary for the first time in a long time.

Javon Hargrave was injured during Thursday's OTA practice. Little is known about the severity of the injury, with the exception that the second year nose-tackle walked off the field following the incident. Hargrave played in 15 games as a rookie, managing to solidify a spot at the top of the depth chart in 13 of 15. (Source: Pennlive )

Fantasy Impact: Hargrave provided consistent production during his rookie campaign, especially considering the lack of depth at the defensive tackle position. The Steelers have addressed such personnel issues, bringing in former 10th overall draft selection Tyson Alualu of the Jacksonville Jaguars. While Daniel McCullers is the immediate backup, Alualu will certainly be called upon at some point this season. Look for Hargrave to receive a majority of the workload this year, barring a serious injury.

Category: Injury Updates

The Steelers' defense has prided itself on the 3-4 zone blitz for as long as the league can remember. However, times are changing in Pittsburgh. Artie Burns commented on the issue in a recent interview: "Every team that's won Super Bowls the last couple of years has been able to play man," Burns continued, per ESPN's Jeremy Fowler. "We want to be a team to play man, get the pressure on the quarterback and attack coverage downfield. " (Source: ESPN)

Fantasy Impact: The Steelers were 18th in passing-yards-allowed in 2016 and the glaring issue was the inability to play man-coverage. In turn, the secondary was torched by Tom Brady and Chris Hogan in the AFC Championship. Recent additions of Coty Sensabaugh, along with rookies Cameron Sutton and Brian Allen point toward a little more defensive versatility in 2017. This, paired with a widely improved pass-rush, could be the tweak the Steelers need to get two wins better.

Category: Rumors

ESPN's Adam Schefter is reporting the Pittsburgh Steelers have released tight end Ladarius Green with a failed physical designation. (Source: Adam Schefter on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: After one disappointing, injury-plagued season in Pittsburgh, the Steelers are moving on from Green. The veteran tight end battled ankle and lingering symptoms of a head injury since signing with the club last offseason, which led to his release. Jesse James is expected to step into Green's role as Pittsburgh's No. 1 tight end for the 2017 season.

Category: Transactions

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport is reporting former Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Jarvis Jones is expected to sign with the Arizona Cardinals. (Source: Ian Rapoport on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Jones, the former 17th overall pick of the Steelers in the 2013 draft, is expected to sign with the Cardinals Tuesday. Although he has never lived up to expectations, Jones had an uplifting season in 2016. He accumulated a career high 42 tackles, one sack, an interception, two forced fumbles and a recovery while playing in 14 games. If Jones can remain healthy, he's only played in 50 of a possible 64 regular season games in his career, he could be in line for a breakout season in 2017.

Category: Transactions

The Miami Dolphins have signed inside linebacker Lawrence Timmons to a two-year, $12 million contract with $11 million in guaranteed money. (Source: Sun Sentinel)

Fantasy Impact: The Dolphins had to address their porous run defense that gave up too many rushing yards last year. The Timmons signing helps address that weakness. Timmons can play every down and played 91 percent of the snaps last year for the Steelers.

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport is reporting former Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Markus Wheaton will sign with the Chicago Bears. (Source: Ian Rapoport on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Now that Alshon Jeffery moved on to the Eagles, the Bears have a significant void at wide receiver. They filled with Wheaton Thursday. During his tenure in Pittsburgh, Wheaton showed flashes of talent, but never lived up to expectations. Perhaps a change of scenery and a new system will jumpstart Wheaton's career.

Category: Transactions