Martavis Bryant returned to the Pittsburgh Steelers in style, and he helped them beat the Browns in very convincing fashion in Week 2. The Steelers have needed Bryant to be as good as possible, and they have achieved their goal by giving him space to roam when Antonio Brown is covered. Bryant might be the best second option in football, and that should scare the rest of the AFC.


Fans have speculated over whether the Steelers have the best receivers in the league, and we have even speculated about how good Bryant is in the first place.

We have speculated about whether or not he is worth the hassle, and we have wondered if he can ever get off the weed. The simple truth is that the Steelers need Bryant if they want to go deep into the playoffs. He provides that extra spark in their offense that they obviously need. When Antonio Brown is covered, Bryant will come out of nowhere to catch the same passes that Brown would have caught. They are not the same player, but they do many of the same things.

Why does it matter?

Bryant was an excellent selection for this team because he gives the Steelers another offensive weapon that Big Ben needs before he retires. We can go on all day about Antonio Brown, but even this writer can gameplan to defend Antonio Brown.

He is there, and he is very good. You have to stop him. Well, how do you stop the best receiver in football, try to stop LeVeon Bell, and leave Martavis Bryant wide open? You see the problems that opposing defenses will have.

Can Bryant help the Steelers compete with Oakland?

Oakland is just as good as this Steeler team, and Bryant has to be very good if these two teams meet in the playoffs.

The Raiders will score at will, and the Steelers must be able to do the same thing. That pass that cannot go to Brown because he is triple covered has to go to Bryant. Bryant has to catch it, he has to extend plays, and he has to be available. Bryant cannot get in trouble again, and he has to walk a straight and narrow path so that the Steelers can have hope that they can compete with the better teams in the league.

Capitalizing before free agency

Martavis Bryant can easily leave the Steelers when his free agency period starts and go to any number of places. They have already endured a lot with him, but they will not pay him the kind of money that other teams will. He could leave them without a good second option, and that means the Steelers have to win right now before Bryant gets too expensive, too popular, and leaves town.