Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin acknowledged a long time ago that he had actually started to ‘manage’ rookie pass receiver Chase Claypool’s workload, with an eye towards maintaining him to a degree for the group’s prepared for postseason run, and helping him to avoid hitting a novice wall.

He never did hit a novice wall, per se, however his snap count and his production did take a hit. Over the past five video games, he stopped working to enter into the end zone even when, and was held to under 55 backyards weekly, in some cases much less. He only captured more than 4 passes once because stretch.

On Sunday in the Steelers’ season finale versus the Cleveland Browns, Tomlin had a different strategy in mind. It was time to get his big young stud of a wide receiver going again as a tune-up for what was to come. And he made the plays, ending up the video game with 5 receptions for 101 backyards, his second of the year, and a goal.

” It was our intention to feature him a bit today”, Tomlin told press reporters after the game about Claypool’s use. “We wanted him to have that type of rhythm and that kind of self-confidence in his play-making ability entering into January ball. We were able to check that box”.

Which, naturally, featured third-year quarterback Mason Rudolph under center, with Ben Roethlisberger being rested for a season ending that bore little meaning to the Steelers as a group, having already clinched the third seed with long shot of enhancing their circumstance.

Rudolph had the ability to link down the field a couple of times with Claypool, initially for a big 41-yard gain, and later, in the 4th quarter, finding him inside the five-yard line for what would go down as a 28-yard score. It was his ninth getting touchdown and 11th overall, both connecting group novice records.

” When he’s one-on-on, for such a huge guy, he really wins on go balls”, Rudolph observed. “Perhaps his 40 time isn’t as quick as those men on paper, but he’s a quite darn excellent football gamer when he puts the pads on. You provide him an opportunity in those scenarios”.

Possibly he’s uninformed that Claypool really fan a very good 40 time. Possibly not an elite mark, but the fastest on the team at this position, and while there were questions coming out of college whether he revealed that speed on tape, he certainly has considering that going into the NFL.

The 6′ 4″, 234-pounder surfaces his rookie regular season having captured 62 passes (also a team novice record for 873 backyards (46 from breaking JuJu Smith-Schuster’s novice yardage record), with nine receiving goals and 11 total touchdowns in general, consisting of two hurrying ratings.

However the great ones make their marks in the postseason, which’s what Tomlin desired to get ready his young weapon for. Claypool is entering the playoffs with a stimulate, with momentum, which’s simply where they were hoping him to be.

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