Steelers and soon-to-be free-agent wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster was using his Fortnite avatar to try on different NFL jerseys.
The mighty have fallen in Pittsburgh. After starting off the 2020 season 11-0, the Steelers dropped to 12-4 and dropped down to the third seed in the AFC. Things only got worse, as the Steelers were eliminated in the Wild Card Round by the rival and former division punching bags in the Cleveland Browns. Now, it’s onto the offseason for the Steelers, who have 18 players set to hit free agency. One of those is wide receiver JuJu Smtih-Schuster, who could potentially command quite a market for himself in the coming months.
During a Twitch stream on Friday night, the avid gamer switched up his Fortnite avatar’s attire with different NFL jerseys, adding fuel to the speculation that he might not return to the Steelers. Some of the teams he represented were the Green Bay Packers, Indianapolis Colts, New Orleans Saints and Chicago Bears.
Where will JuJu play in 2021?
On Saturday, NFL Media’s Mike Garafolo reported that the Steelers expect veteran quarterback Ben Roethlisberger to return for the 2021 season. Garafolo also mentioned that if Roethlisberger were to come back, then he’d like to have all of his teammates hitting the open market to return, including Smith-Schuster.
While that’s nice and all, the problem is “Big Ben’s” huge cap hit. After signing a two-year, $66 million contract extension last year, Roethlisberger’s cap hit for 2021 is a staggering $41 million. That hinders Pittsburgh’s chances of getting most of those players to return. However, the Steelers could lessen the cap hit if they were to give Roethlsiberger a contract extension. Even if they accomplish that, it’s unknown if that would be enough to get Smith-Schuster to return.
There are plenty of teams in need of wide receiver help who wouldn’t be afraid to throw extra money Smith-Schuster’s way. The 24-year-old recorded 97 receptions for 831 yards and nine touchdowns in the regular season and in Pittsburgh’s lone playoff game, Smith-Schuster caught 13 passes for 157 yards and a touchdown.
Hey, if you’re hitting free agency, you might as well have some fun with it. That’s exactly what JuJu’s doing.