Steelers WR coach: Pickens' rookie year was a failure for both of us
The Pittsburgh Steelers' coaching staff expects George Pickens to be better next season.
"For him to play like he played last year, that's a failure on my part. That's a failure on his part," wide receivers coach Frisman Jackson said Wednesday, per 93.7 The Fan. "... The expectation is for him to play at a great level this year."
Pickens finished his rookie campaign with 52 receptions, 801 yards, and four touchdowns on 84 targets. Offensive Rookie of the Year Garrett Wilson of the New York Jets, the New Orleans Saints' Chris Olave, and the Atlanta Falcons' Drake London were the only first-year players to finish with more receiving yards.
Despite the totals, Pickens dealt with some week-to-week inconsistency. The 6-foot-3 target had five games with fewer than 30 yards, including a blank stat sheet in Week 8 against the Philadelphia Eagles.
"It has to be a big jump," Jackson said. "The onus is on me to have him take that next step. That big jump that we are all searching for and want, he's got to be a great player for us."
Pittsburgh finished 24th in passing yards per game (200.6) and tied for 25th in points per game (18.1) last season.