With the 2017 NFL Draft set to get underway Thursday in Philadelphia, the Pittsburgh Steelers still don’t know when or if wide receiver Martavis Bryant will ultimately be reinstated by Roger Goodell after sitting out the entire 2016 season due to a suspension for multiple violations of the league’s substance abuse policy.
During their annual pre-draft press conference on Monday, Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert was asked if he’s heard anything from the league concerning Bryant being reinstated and if he expects to hear anything prior to the draft taking place.
“No and we don’t know,” Colbert said. “We have not heard anything. We do know that he did go for a hearing, a review by the league, but we have no information and we’ll have no idea whether well get information prior to, or not. So were just going to operate under the assumption that until he’s here, he’s not here.”
Colbert went on to say that the team is not currently allowed to have contact with Bryant. He was then asked if possibly not knowing about the wide receivers’ status prior to the draft changes anything regarding the position.
“Not really,” Colbert said. “As we’ve said all along, if he’s not here, until he’s here, he’s not here so we just have to prepare as such and it doesn’t change whether he would be here, or not. We’re going to look at all of the receivers and be prepared to act accordingly.”
The Steelers have had several wide receivers in for pre-draft visits over the course of the last month and it will now be interesting to see if they use one of their currently scheduled eight selections on one.
As for Bryant, on the surface it appears he’s been in complete compliance with what the league has asked him to do over the course of his year away from football. He’s been working out in Las Vegas for some time now to have himself ready to return to the team should he ultimately wind up being reinstated.