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2022 Stock Watch – WR George Pickens – Stock Up

Now that the Pittsburgh Steelers are deep into the season, it’s time to take stock of where the team stands. Specifically, where Steelers players stand individually based on what we have seen and are seeing over the course of the regular season as it plays out. A stock evaluation can take a couple of different approaches and I’ll try to make clear my reasoning for each one. In some cases, it will be based on more long-term trends. In other instances, it will be a direct response to something that just happened. Because of this, we can and will see a player more than once over the course of the season as we move forward.

Player: WR George Pickens

Stock Value: Up

Reasoning: The rookie wide receiver continued to take steps forward in his development with a win over the Las Vegas Raiders, catching five passes on five targets for 57 yards. He scored the game-winning touchdown from fellow rookie Kenny Pickett with under a minute to play.

George Pickens caught six passes in back-to-back weeks early in the season, and in three games out of four, stretching between the games against the Jets and the Dolphins. He only caught more than three passes in a game once since then when he grabbed four against the Cincinnati Bengals five weeks ago.

He had five grabs in Saturday’s win over the Las Vegas Raiders, with three of them being significant plays. His first catch went for eight yards to move the chains on 3rd and 2 in the middle of the second quarter. Later on their opening drive of the second half, he caught a deep pass for 25 yards.

His next two receptions didn’t really go anywhere, including a two-yard catch on 3rd and 9 that forced the Steelers to settle for a field goal, but you know how big his final catch was. It was a 14-yarder from the arm of fellow rookie quarterback Kenny Pickett that found the back of the end zone with under a minute to play and which gave them their first lead of the game.

While catching is his primary responsibility, he’s also continuing to develop away from the ball, getting involved in blocking schemes and picking them up when a play breaks down from its design and ends up heading his way.

He does need to work on continuing to play every snap as though he will be featured on it, because his effort can still waver from time to time. But he’s only getting better, with the last outing being another example of that. As long as he stays on that trajectory, he could have a very long career in Pittsburgh—or somewhere else.

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