If you want to infuriate a Pittsburgh Steelers fan, tell them the team should take a wide receiver with their first overall pick in next month’s NFL draft. But ask Jordan Addison, and he would love to be Pittsburgh’s first-round pick.
Addison didn’t hesitate when asked whether he’d like to reunite with Kenny Pickett. “If we reunite, that’d be real cool. Real easy transition,” Addison told Steelers media at the NFL Combine. “Come get me.”
Like Pickett, the Steelers got a pretty good look at the former Pitt receiver during his two seasons practicing across the hall at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex. So it was no surprise to hear he was one of their first formal meetings.
“I met with the Steelers, it was one of my first meetings,” Addison said. “That meeting went well, but I already knew them well. I like the Steelers, and I like the city of Pittsburgh.”
In 2022 as the Steelers took Pickett No. 20 overall, Addison headed west to USC. But before that, the two connected for 2,259 yards and 21 touchdowns. In their final collegiate season together, sports journalist Shaun Chornobroff called Pickett and Addison the “most under-appreciated duo in the country.”
Of course, there’s no guarantee Addison will fall to No. 17 and the Steelers would be crazy to trade up for him. A lingering ankle injury in the fall of 2022 has some draftniks predicting he’ll fall from the top to middle of the first, where Pittsburgh will be sitting, barring a trade. But it seems that a draft stock dip might require a poor Combine or Pro Days showing for him to be around for their second pick at No. 32.
Steelers QB Kenny Pickett Shares Thoughts on Jordan Addison Reunion
Teams like the Philadelphia Eagles (Jalen Hurts, A.J. Brown) and Cincinnati Bengals (Joe Burrow, Ja’Marr Chase) have successfully reunited their quarterbacks with former collegiate receivers. It could work for the Steelers, too. “Me and Kenny, our relationship is great,” Addison said. “If we could reunite, it would help the transition a lot. We talk a lot still. Our connection is dynamic.”
But Steelers GM Omar Khan doesn’t necessarily prescribe to the trend, even going so far as to call the transition not hard. “I think you always look at things like that but given the offseasons that you have and the time guys spend together… new receivers trying to get acclimated to quarterbacks, it’s not a hard process,” Khan told Steelers media at the NFL Combine.
As far as if Pickett has been vocal with the Steelers brass about the prized receiver, Khan brushed it off.
“You guys would have to ask Kenny about that,” Khan said, “but Jordan Addison is a good football player.”
But we don’t even have to ask because Pickett has been vocal about his former Pitt teammate throughout the offseason. “That would be awesome, man. We talked about playing in the NFL together while we were at Pitt,” Pickett said on Cam Heyward’s Not Just Football podcast. “That’s like the college teammates dream, especially like a quarterback-receiver, that kind of dynamic. Especially how well we played together.”
The Steelers have more significant holes to fill on the offensive and defensive lines to go after a wide receiver with their first overall pick. Hopefully, they’ll avoid doing so, but Pittsburgh has been known to surprise.