After a down year in 2019, James Conner is entering the final season of his rookie contract after he was drafted in 2017. Even though the University of Pittsburgh product wants to stay with the Steelers, the team has been reluctant to give him a contract extension due to inconsistent play.
When discussing the 2020 season, the 2018 Pro Bowler said, "I’ll give it all I got for one more year and see how it plays out."
Conner will be in a crowded running back group, including Jaylen Samuels, Benny Snell and 2020 fourth round pick Anthony McFarland Jr. However, if he can return to his 2018 form, he should have no problem winning the starting job and, in turn, receiving a contract extension.
The Pennsylvania native hit paydirt 13 times in 2018 and rushed for almost 1,000 yards in 13 games. His numbers did drop in 2019, rushing for under 500 yards and less than 5 touchdowns, but he didn't have his startling quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger, and was hindered by knee and shoulder injuries.
Compound coming back healthy, the return of Big Ben, as well as a great attitude, and there is little reason why Conner can't return to his 2018 ways.
Right now, the running back is saying all the right things and will absolutely do everything he can to remain a fan favorite and in the Steelers' good graces.