The Pittsburgh Steelers use their 49th overall pick to take Notre Dame wide receiver Chase Claypool. The big and speedy receiver will add instant offense. With Ben Roethlisberger coming back from injury, he gets a playmaker to go along with JuJu Smith Schuster, James Washington and Diontae Johnson.
Chase Claypool worked his way into a starting receiver job at Notre Dame, but in his junior season, he became a starter and had 50 receptions, 639 yards, and four touchdowns. In 2019 he was the team’s leading receiver, grabbing 66 passes for 1,037 yards (15.7 yards per catch) and 13 touchdowns for the Fighting Irish.
Claypool has great speed for his size, running a 4.42 40 at 6’4”, 238 pounds. He also had a 40.5 vertical jump, 126 inch broad jump and put up 19 reps on bench press. He’s had trouble with drops but still makes strong contested catches with defenders draped all over him. Claypool’s work off the line and route running is good but not refined. If he isn’t turned into a tight end, he’ll need work to become a strong outside receiver in the NFL.
Fantasy football impact
Claypool joins a strong offensive team with Roethlisberger back but will have competition for targets. He’ll need to beat out James Washington or Diontae Johnson to get playing time early on and might not be a full time player his rookie year.
His designation between tight end or outside receiver is going to be key for his fantasy future. He has the ability of a receiver who can succeed long term, but needs work to compete with NFL cornerbacks on the outside. If he is moved to tight end, he can win with his size and athleticism against linebackers and safeties and at a weaker fantasy position.