In the third and final round on day two of the 2020 NFL Draft, the Pittsburgh Steelers took a wildcard in Chase Claypool.
Claypool was a relatively under-the-radar prospect until his NFL combine performance put his name in contention to be a potential early second-round pick. When a 6-foot-4, 228 lb receiver can run a 4.42 40 yard-dash, he’ll turn many heads. While he also performed very well in his vertical jump (40.5″) and broad jump (126″), that doesn’t provide the whole story.
In his fourth season at Notre Dame, Claypool put together his best statistical performance with 1,037 yards and an impressive 13 touchdowns. However, his stats are a little misleading. Taking a look at the visuals below, one can clearly identify that while Claypool had great performances against unranked opponents, he tended to struggle against teams that were ranked. There is one exception to this, however. Claypool had a higher touchdowns-per-game ratio against ranked opponents this season, but that’s because he scored four touchdowns against a ranked Navy team.
Nonetheless, Claypool is joining a Steelers offense that has needed help at the wide receiver position ever since the departure of Antonio Brown. In fact, last year the Steelers’ best fantasy wide receivers were Diontae Johnson and James Washington with JuJu Smith-Schuster finishing third on the team in PPR scoring formats. Ben Rothlisberger is also back after being out for the majority of last year, which will dramatically help Claypool’s fantasy value. At the moment, Claypool’s fantasy value is that of a bench stash that has potential, but not a pick you would choose during your initial draft.