2014 wasn’t a great rookie season for Pittsburgh Steelers running back Dri Archer as the Kent State product and former third-round draft pick failed to deliver the big plays the team was hoping for on offense and special teams.
Prior to the team’s first training camp practice, Archer was asked if he feels 2015 is make or break season for him.
“That’s not my job to decide,” said Archer, who produced a total of 226 yards last season in an interview that can be heard on Steelers Nation Radio. “I’m just trying to get better and just help the team.”
Archer was then asked in which ways he thought he needed to improve his game this upcoming season.
“Just working at perfecting my craft and just learning assignments and reading blocks,” he said.
163 of Archer’s total yards last year came on returns and after being removed from that job in the middle of the season, he’s expecting to be the team’s primary kick returner in 2015.
“That’s the plan,” he said.
So what led to him being removed from returns last season?
“I wasn’t setting up my blocks properly. I wasn’t reading and hitting the right holes,” Archer said.
So, is it his instinct that needs improving in the return game, or just something that he has to learn?
“It’s a little bit of everything,” Archer said. “It’s just something you have to work on. That’s what I worked on during the offseason.”
As far as what Archer’s role on offense will be in 2015, he’s expected to have a larger one early on in the season while starter Le’Veon Bell serves his suspension. While he might be used as a slot receiver some in addition to playing running back in 2015 Archer said he really doesn’t care where he lines up.
“It doesn’t really matter to me as long as I have the ball in my hands, he said. “I’m one of those guys who likes the ball in my hands.”