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Donte Moncrief Emerging as Favorite for Steelers' No. 2 Wide Receiver Role

JACKSONVILLE, FL - NOVEMBER 18: Donte Moncrief #10 of the Jacksonville Jaguars is tackled by T.J. Watt #90 of the Pittsburgh Steelers during the first half at TIAA Bank Field on November 18, 2018 in Jacksonville, Florida.  (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Scott Halleran/Getty Images

The Steelers traded away arguably the greatest receiver in the NFL in Antonio Brown this offseason, and are looking for guys to help fill the void of his departure. JuJu Smith-Schuster is expected to take a big step forward this season as the top playmaker, but Pittsburgh needs someone opposite him to keep the opposing defense honest.

That's where Donte Moncrief steps in.

The veteran wide receiver signed with the Steelers in the offseason and brings an element of speed to the Pittsburgh offense. Moncrief made a name for himself in the pass-heavy offense in Indianapolis, and spent the previous season with the Jacksonville Jaguars.

With the Jags in 2018, Moncrief recorded 48 receptions, 668 yards and 3 touchdowns.

The Steelers need to replace Brown's almost 1,300 yards and 15 touchdowns, and JuJu is going to face consistent double-teams. A combination of Moncrief and a group of young receivers will need to be ready to share the load. Moncrief has reportedly grabbed pole position for the No. 2 receiver role at Heinz Field this season, but he's not the only one showing out. Some younger guys have played well in camp, too.

His veteran standing should help with picking up the playbook and understanding a quarterback like Ben Roethlisberger, who remains one of the best high-volume gunslingers in the league.

Moncrief may not be Antonio Brown, but he can no doubt help this Pittsburgh offense contend for the AFC North title.