Underrated: Ryan Shazier
He’s been nicked up a little bit, but when he’s been on the field he’s as dynamic a linebacker as there is in this game, and really a rare athlete at the position. The fastest LB in football, he ran a 4.35 40 at his pro day and pulled up five yards before he finished, so who knows what he would have ran if he didn’t lighten up right at the end. There is one other linebacker that played at a high level in the NFL and ran a 4.3 anything, and that’s Patrick Willis, who ran a 4.37. Shazier has great instincts and is a difference maker in every sense of the word. Hopefully he stays healthy long enough this year so the masses will recognize that.
Overrated: Markus Wheaton
A lot of people talk about how the Steelers have the best receiving corps in the NFL. When you have Antonio Brown, that helps a lot. But many people tab Wheaton as a top receiver as well, which he is not. He gets the benefit of having one-on-one coverage opposite Brown. He’s a solid player, but he’s not doing anything dynamic.
There is a misconception that there is going to be a drastic decline in terms of their offensive production without Le’Veon Bell [for only the first three games] and without Martavis Bryant all season. But this is one of the most explosive offenses in football and has been for years. And with DeAngelo Williams in the building, they have some safety nets, as he kept the Steelers in it last year when Bell got hurt.