The Pittsburgh Steelers wrapped up their 2017 offseason practices on Thursday and from an outsider’s perspective, the last four weeks have gone extremely well for wide receiver Martavis Bryant, who was conditionally reinstated by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell prior to the 2017 NFL Draft after sitting out the entire 2016 season due to a suspension for multiple violations of the league’s substance abuse policy.
Earlier in the week, Steelers wide receivers coach Richard Mann gave a positive progress report on Bryant.
“He’s picking up right where he left off as far as I’m concerned,” Mann said, according to Ray Fittipaldo of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “I loved him when he was here and I still love him. We just have to get him back in the groove of everything. I think he’s kind of fit back in real nicely. He hasn’t lost a lot when it comes to the system. He still knows it so that’s a good thing. I’ve been very pleased so far.”
Mann also gave every indication that he believes Bryant has put his troubled past behind him based on what he’s observed from the former fourth-round draft pick so far during the team’s three weeks’ worth of OTA sessions and mandatory minicamp.
“I think he’s matured a lot,” Mann said. “He’s a little different personality-wise, which is a good thing. He’s probably a little bit humble and has been through a lot. So, hopefully, we grow up. I think he’s done that.”
On Wednesday, Steelers offensive coordinator Todd Haley was asked how he thinks Bryant is coming along in his development since his return to the team.
“Good, good,” Haley replied. “He’s a guy with all kinds of ability. Anytime you have a guy out here working with the guys, I think it’s good for us. Obviously, he has a long way to go, but he’s off to a good start.”
Now that the Steelers offseason practices over, players have the next six weeks off to prepare themselves both mentally and physically for training camp in Latrobe. While it’s yet to be reported what Bryant has in store for himself the next six weeks, one can easily speculate that he’ll likely remain in Pittsburgh to train and continue his meetings with his clinical resources along with satisfying other terms of his conditional reinstatement agreement that reportedly includes him being drug tested several times a week.