Pittsburgh Steeler named one of the biggest threats to break the NFL single-season receiving record

Steeler named one of ‘biggest threats’ to break NFL single-season receiving record
from Aaron Becker, with YardBarker.com/www.yardbarker.com

Calvin Johnson, also known as “Megatron,” was one of the most gifted wide receivers of all time. The three-time first-team All-Pro and six-time Pro Bowler dominated the NFL during his short nine-year career.

His most dominant season came in 2012 when he set the record for the most receiving yards in a season (1,964). The record has lasted for over a decade, but Johnson believes it’s only a matter of time until it’s broken in a pass-centric league.

“I mean, it’s bound to fall at some point the way it’s going, so it is what it is,” Johnson said, via the Detroit Free Press. “I held it down, I don’t know even know how long, over a decade now.”

Last season, 28 players finished with 1,000-plus yards, including two who exceeded 1,700 yards (Tyreek Hill and CeeDee Lamb).

That’s why NFL.com’s Bucky Brooks agrees with Johnson and named the “five biggest threats” to break the NFL single-season receiving record in 2024.

Among those is a Steeler: wide receiver George Pickens.

“Though the Steelers will adhere to a run-centric offensive approach under new offensive coordinator Arthur Smith, Pickens could light up the stat sheet as the big-play specialist on the perimeter,” Brooks writes. “With Russell Wilson and Justin Fields potentially being significant upgrades over their predecessors, the Steelers’ top playmaker could see his numbers spike as the focal point of a passing game committed to pushing the ball down the field.”

It’s not hard to imagine Pickens having his best season yet in 2024. The third-year wide receiver had a career-high 63 catches for 1,140 yards and five touchdowns in 2023 and should have an upgrade at quarterback as Brooks noted.

Whether that is Wilson, Fields or both is up for debate, but Wilson thinks Pickens can be just as special as some of his former teammates.

“There’s only so many people in the world that can do what he can do,” Wilson said. “I’ve been fortunate to play around some special receivers and he’s that guy. He’s definitely one of those, for sure.”

Still, it would take about 116 receiving yards per game to surpass Johnson’s record in the 17-game regular-season schedule.

That’s not an impossible feat, but Pittsburgh wants to run the football early and often this season, which could prevent it from happening.

Pickens should have a career year, but even coming close to Johnson’s single-season receiving record seems like a stretch.