Can you picture Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Martavis Bryant wearing the green and white of the New York Jets? According to MMQB’s Jenny Vrentas, several members of the Jets staff wanted to draft the Clemson product last year but their pleas were ignored.
The Steelers wound up drafting Bryant in the fourth round with 118th overall selection and that pick was made after the Jets selected wide receiver Shaq Evans out of UCLA with the 115th overall pick. If that’s not enough, the Jets also drafted another wide receiver earlier in the fourth round as Oklahoma’s Jalen Saunders was selected 104th overall.
The selections of Evans and Saunders are not looking great at all right now as the former missed his rookie season with a shoulder injury and the latter was waived before the first month of the 2014 season was over.
Initially, things weren’t looking promising for Bryant with the Steelers as he missed the start of the 2014 season with a shoulder injury and an illness. Once he was fully healthy and allowed to suit up, however, he instantly made an impact and he went on to catch 26 passes for 549 yards and eight touchdowns.
While the Jets did beat the Steelers 20-13 last season, their staff witnessed Bryant catching four passes in that game for 143 yards and a long touchdown. Despite them getting the win, I’m willing to bet several on the Jets staff reminded then-head coach Rex Ryan and the members of the front office that they banged the table for the 6-4, speedster.
The Jets cleaned house after the 2014 season was over and Ryan is now the head coach of the Buffalo Bills. The Steelers will face the Bills this year during the preseason and I’m willing to bet that Ryan and Mike Tomlin have some sort of brief discussion about Bryant on the field prior to that game kicking off.