Steelers Rookie Calls Calvin Austin Leader

Steelers rookie wide receiver calls veteran wideout Calvin Austin III a leader of the team.
Jan 15, 2024; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Calvin Austin III (19) celebrates a touchdown in the second half against the Buffalo Bills in a 2024 AFC wild card game at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 15, 2024; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Calvin Austin III (19) celebrates a touchdown in the second half against the Buffalo Bills in a 2024 AFC wild card game at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports / Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports
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PITTSBURGH -- Following the 2023 season, the Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver room went through a complete change. Losing Diontae Johnson, Miles Boykin and Allen Robinson, the Steelers needed to have an active offseason. Going into the offseason with just George Pickens and Calvin Austin III, the Steelers have also added players such as Scotty Miller, Denzel Mims and Van Jefferson.

Many people viewed the wide receiver situation this offseason as bleak, especially after the Steelers failed to land trade targets like Brandon Aiyuk and Courtland Sutton.

That being said, that same sentiment is not echoed by Steelers wide receivers themselves. Rookie Roman Wilson, a third round selection from Michigan, had only praise for three-year vet Calvin Austin III

"Right now, the way I look at Calvin is he's a veteran of the room. In my opinion, I feel like he's more of the leader of the room," Wilson said via Post-Gazette Sports. "He's just a great guy, great teammate. I feel like I can talk to him. I feel like I can ask him questions. He asks me questions, and I just feel like he's a great dude."

Austin has a chance to make a true impact for the first time in his NFL career. A foot injury kept the fifth round selection off the field his entire rookie season. In 2023 Austin spent much of the season buried on the depth chart but shone as a quick receiver. In just 17 catches, Austin caught for 180 yards and a touchdown.

Due to the revolving door that was this offseason for the Steelers, Austin will now be thrust into a role on the offense as one of the most tenured offensive players. Additionally, a wide open competition for the second wide receiver can let Austin thrive.

Austin has an opportunity to join an elite group of offensive players taken in the fifth round. This round has included athletes like Tyreek Hill, George Kittle and Herschel Walker. Austin also has an opportunity to become the second best selection for the Steelers of the 2022 draft, jumping Kenny Pickett to sit behind George Pickens.

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Ari Meyer

ARI MEYER

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