Let’s dive into and take a look at the Pittsburgh Steelers and their tight end depth chart. With the retirement of Heath Miller Big Ben is going to need to find that one guy he can depend on solidly in 3rd and short.
Ladarius Green is accustomed to having a gun slinging quarterback, so we will see if Green and Big Ben Roethlesberger can make the same connection that Ben and Heath Miller used to have for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Jesse James is an athletic target, and Matt Spaeth is a big blocking tight end that has some hands as well.
Ladarius Green – Grade: Solid B+
Fans of the Pittsburgh Steelers are going to see Ladarius Green in a different uniform this year wearing number 80 in the 2016 season. Whether or not he will have a significant impact on the team when he takes the field this year is up in the air after his May 25th, 2016 ankle surgery.
In 2015 Green proved he can offer a significant contribution to a team with his 429 yards and 63 targets last season.
Being still on the younger side of his career Green has time to bounce back and still be a big part of his new team.
He should fit in very well being a big 6 foot 6-inch target for Ben especially in the red zone and blocking up front for hopefully less sacks this upcoming season.
Jesse James – Grade: B
Only being in his second year as a pro, Jesse James does not have a lot of pro stats or games to go by, but he did have a pretty stellar college career with 78 total receptions and over 1,000 yards.
Being the 160th overall pick in the 2015 draft this young man from Penn St. was happy to be with the Pittsburgh Steelers and had high hopes to be a starter.
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During the Combine, James did reps for research and raised over 5,000 dollars. That means he will more than likely be an active person in the Pittsburgh community.
Only finding the end zone one time so far in his short career we can all be sure that James is hoping to find it much more often in the upcoming 2016 season.
The grade value of B was hard to give James with having so little success in the NFL so far, but I’ve based my grade more on his potential than his past performance.
Matt Spaeth – Grade: Solid C
Matt Spaeth is the veteran tight end on the team with the retirement of Heath Miller. Spaeth will more than likely see more playing time in the 2016 season. In the 2015 season, he only saw three targets come his way.
In the 2008 season he did show he could be a starter playing in thirteen games that year, but of course, that was eight years ago. Spaeth will have to be the mentor for the younger guys on and off the field and he should have good chemistry with Big Ben.
While he may not be a superstar tight end he can help control games and get big first downs at crucial times in a game. We will have to see if he will become the next safety blanket for the offense.
Now that we have taken a look at the tight ends let’s see what the season brings for our beloved Steelers. These are just my grades and certainly there are other opinions out there. Feel free to comment and start up a conversation.