Watching JuJu Smith-Schuster sign a one-year deal with the Kansas City Chiefs Friday was rather painful. The latest news out of Smith-Schuster’s camp, this time coming from his mother on Instagram, makes that signing all the more painful.
According to Smith-Schuster’s mother, Sammy Schuster, Smith-Schuster wanted to stay in Pittsburgh another year, but the Steelers “didn’t want JuJu,” she wrote on Instagram Saturday while lamenting the loss of more than “400k followers.”
Of course, this is just one side of the story, so take it for what it’s worth, but that makes the loss of Smith-Schuster in free agency to an AFC foe all the more painful.
“There is always one person who fights to keep the that love alive…in our case…we [sic] JuJu and I fought to stay in Pittsburgh because it was never about the money it was about loyalty,” Sammy Schuster wrote on her IG. “But I guess Steelers had a new boyfriend in mind. So they didn’t want JuJu anymore. FYI Pittsburgh!! We fought to stay!!! If your [sic] not wanted then why? stay!!!”
If this is even remotely true, the Steelers dropped the ball here, allowing a key leader and contributor offensively to walk for pennies to an offense already loaded with All-Pro caliber talent. This could all be a bit of a stretch on the truth from the Smith-Schuster camp, though, to make themselves look a bit better after leaving a place they’ve called home for five years. It’s just one side of the story though, but it does come directly from Smith-Schuster’s mom.
Smith-Schuster will make a base salary of $3 million in 2022 with the Kansas City Chiefs, and can earn up to $7.5 million in incentives, making for his one-year, $10.5 million deal.
We’ll see if anything comes out from the Steelers’ side, but it’s not a great look overall right now for the black and gold.