JuJu Smith-Schuster Wants To Stay With Steelers

This has been an offseason of change for the Steelers as the Ben Roethlisberger era starts to wind down, with Maurkice Pouncey retiring and several other shufflings.

One of the biggest questions Pittsburgh faces this offseason is the future of receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster, who is set to be a free agent. Smith-Schuster has liked some tweets encouraging to sign in various places, and there has been some speculation that the USC product could want to return home to Los Angeles to play for either the Chargers or Rams. However, the young wideout made clear in recent comments to TMZ Sports that he’d prefer to stay in Pittsburgh if possible.

“At the end of the day, I want to have my legacy in Pittsburgh and retire there,” Smith-Schuster said. “I don’t want to leave.” He was asked about the Rams and Chargers, and he rebuffed the notion, saying “not right now. Until I actually get let go, other than that, I’m Pittsburgh for life.”

It sounds like if the Steelers are willing to pay him his market value, he’ll be back catching passes from Roethlisberger in 2021. Smith-Schuster is a very interesting free agency case. On the one hand his production has dropped the past two seasons, but it’s also extremely rare for a 24-year-old with his level of accomplishments to hit the open market.

In 2018 he looked like one of the top receivers in the league, racking up 1,426 yards. This past season he finished with only 831 in the same number of games as the Steelers’ passing attack lacked explosiveness.

He did still score nine touchdowns in 2020, and was competing with a host of other receivers for targets. We heard recently that the Raiders are “very interested” in signing Smith-Schuster, so there will be something of a bidding war for his services. He won’t get top of the receiver market money, but he could land something in the $15MM annually range.

Despite his comments today, it still wouldn’t be surprising if he ends up getting priced out of the Steelers’ range. The team doesn’t have the best cap situation, as they continue to work through the problems posed by Roethlisberger’s hefty contract.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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17 comments on “JuJu Smith-Schuster Wants To Stay With Steelers

  1. Black Ace57

    He wasted his potential. He chose to focus on being a tik tok star and motivating the other teams to beat the Steelers than winning. They have plenty of WRs and cap issues just let him move on.

    • forwhomjoshbelltolled

      Dude is going to get huge money and gets national endorsements making even more money, such a waste.

      Not his fault his QB is dumber than a snow shovel and gets pick sixed in every big moment.

        • myaccount

          He is easily the best WR on his team. JuJu makes Claypool better, not the other way around.

          • forwhomjoshbelltolled

            Noooooo.

            JuJu is a very good receiver.

            He’s Ryan Switzer next to Claypool.

    • amk1920

      Posting Tik Toks doesn’t mean he can’t play football…. He has missed 6 games in four seasons. Juju hasn’t even hit his prime yet.

  2. Rocket32

    A lot of players say they ‘want to stay with their current team’ until another team offers more money in free agency.

  3. letmeclearmythroat74

    That would be great … The position he plays as Tic Toc Dancer is crucial. I’m not sure he can be replaced in that regard. Otherwise average. I figured he’d be off to the Jets or Giants where average counts.

      • bush5104

        Cmon dude, but some thought into your comments. If you’re going to rip it, make it worth everyone’s while. You must be a former player, because your comments lead us all to believe you have CTE.

  4. JakeSnake19

    Honestly, if James Washington played as much as him in 2020, he could’ve matched his production. He’s solid, but I’d spend the money elsewhere

  5. seon_pierce

    You crotchety yinzers are forgetting that in real life he’s one of the best slot and “in space” receivers in the league. He mega-valuable. I hope he returns…

  6. steelerbravenation

    The more & more this off season goes the more I realize the salary cap & it’s dead money is nonsense
    All I kept hearing was the Steelers will be in cap hell and every couple days something is done to free up more money.
    The Haskins signing tells me they don’t believe in Mason as the QB of the future & they want to get Haskins in to see what he got & Ben wether you like it or not gives them the best chance to win next year so they are riding with him.
    I would love JuJu back toughest WR since Hines fearless in the middle of the field an initiates contact as well as absorbs it.
    But he is not a star number 1 so he can’t be paid like he is. He gotta realize that being a Steeler you gotta sacrifice a little bit and make up for it in endorsements.
    Trade back and take a C with the first pick hopefully gain another 2nd round pick and get a OT & CB and then in the 3rd grab a RB
    If Haskins falls on his face then worry bout a QB next year

  7. Yep it is

    Why would he want to go back to a team with a rebuild coming? They let this team get old.

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