Justin Brown to Steelers: How Wide Receiver Fits with Pittsburgh

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Justin Brown to Steelers: How Wide Receiver Fits with Pittsburgh
Brett Deering/Getty Images

Even though the Steelers took receiver Markus Wheaton in the third round of the 2013 NFL Draft, they didn't feel they had enough at the position. 

As a result Pittsburgh selected sizable receiver Justin Brown from Oklahoma. 

 

Role

Brown is in a position where he won't have to play immediately for the Steelers but he could be in the teams' future plans. Brown is 6'3", and with Plaxico Burress set to become a free agent after the 2013 season, the Steelers need a size guy. 

Brown started his career at Penn State before transferring to Oklahoma following the NCAA sanctions against the Nittany Lions. Brown never accumulated 1,000 yards in a given season but did compile over 1,900 career yards and eight touchdowns. 

 

Scheme Fit

Schematically, the Steelers actually have very little use for a big wide receiver. But Ben Roethlisberger has been begging for a big target for years, and they can utilize some size near the goal line. 

Burress currently occupies the position of "tall receiver" on the Steelers, and given how raw Brown really is, he's probably not in any position to make an impact for Pittsburgh in 2013. 

Tom Pennington/Getty Images

 

Early Projection

I'd be stunned if Brown made any sort of real impact on the Steelers offense in 2013. In fact, I'd be a little shocked if Brown ended up on the Steelers' active roster for the season. 

That's not to say the Steelers made a poor pick in the sixth round. 

Brown has good potential, it just needs to be honed. He could become an impact player in a few years for the Steelers, but his most likely destination is the practice squad in 2013. 

 

Grades

I gave the Steelers a B- for taking Brown in the sixth round because I like the potential of the pick. He's not ready to make an impact immediately for Pittsburgh, but with good coaching, he could become an effective receiver in a few years. 

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