Juju Smith-Schuster is a wide receiver for the Pittsburgh Steelers. He was drafted by the Steelers in the second round of the 2017 NFL Draft. He played college football at USC.
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Juju’s Skills and Traits
Juju Smith-Schuster is a 6’1″, 215-pound receiver who has run a 4.54 40-yard dash. He has great hands, is a physical presence, and can take a hit. He’s also a willing blocker. Juju is a good route runner and has the ability to create separation. He has the speed to run past defenders and the strength to run through them.
His route running
One of the first things that jumps out when watching Juju Smith-Schuster is his route running. He is exceptionally smooth for a player of his size and has a great feel for how to set up defenders. He uses his hands very well to create separation and has the speed to run away from most NFL defenders. In addition, he is very good at making contested catches and has some of the best body control in the NFL.
His ability to make contested catches
Juju Smith-Schuster has the rare ability to come down with 50/50 balls, which will be a valuable asset for the Kansas City Chiefs. In his three NFL seasons, Smith-Schuster has already racked up 215 receptions and 2,831 receiving yards. He’s also caught 20 touchdown passes, including a career-high eight in 2018.
While Smith-Schuster isn’t the biggest receiver at 6’1″, 215 pounds, he’s not afraid to go up and get the ball in traffic. He’s shown time and time again that he can high-point the ball and come down with contested catches. In fact, Smith-Schuster has racked up an impressive 45 catches on passes that were considered “contested” by NFL Next Gen Stats over the last three seasons.
His YAC ability
One of the JuJu’s best traits is his YAC ability. He had 1,316 Yards After the Catch in his career which ranks fourth all time in Steelers history. In fact, 600 of his receiving yards in 2020 came after the catch. That’s an incredible number for a receiver and it really speaks to Juju’s ability to make plays with the ball in his hands.
How Juju Fits in With the Chiefs
The Kansas City Chiefs are adding another weapons to their already potent offense by signing Juju Smith-Schuster. Juju is a physical receiver who can make plays down the field and in the red zone. He is also a good route runner and has great hands. With the addition of Juju, the Chiefs now have one of the best receiving corps in the NFL.
The Chiefs’ offensive scheme
Under offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy, the Chiefs ran 1,011 plays out of 12 personnel last season, which was the fourth most in the NFL. They also used 22 personnel (two backs, two tight ends) on 101 plays, which was the sixth most. The Chiefs liked to use a lot of tight ends and running backs in their offense, and they were very successful doing so. They ranked first in points per play and yards per play out of 12 personnel, and they ranked fifth in points per play and yards per play out of 22 personnel.
Juju Smith-Schuster is a great fit for the Chiefs’ offense because he is a versatile receiver who can line up anywhere on the field. He has the size to be a physical presence at the line of scrimmage, but he also has the speed to get open deep downfield. He can run all of the routes in Bieniemy’s offense, and he has the ability to create big plays after the catch.
The Chiefs have been looking for a receiver like Juju Smith-Schuster since they traded away Jeremy Maclin two years ago. They finally found their guy when they signed him to a four-year, $64 million contract this offseason.
The Chiefs’ other weapons
Though the Chiefs lost one of their top weapons in Tyreek Hill, they still have a plethora of offensive weapons. Juju Smith-Schuster will join WR1 Sammy Watkins, TE Travis Kelce, and RBs Clyde Edwards-Helaire and Le’Veon Bell in what is looking like a very dangerous Kansas City offense.
Juju Smith-Schuster is coming off of a down year in which he only caught 42 passes for 552 yards and 3 touchdowns, but he is only 24 years old and has shown great potential in the past. In 2018, he caught 111 passes for 1,426 yards and 7 touchdowns. The Chiefs are hoping that he can return to that form in 2021.
The addition of Juju Smith-Schuster gives the Chiefs another weapon to pair with WR1 Sammy Watkins. Watkins had a great year in 2020, catching 52 passes for 986 yards and 8 touchdowns. He will be the clear-cut number one receiver in Kansas City and should see a lot of targets from QB Patrick Mahomes.
TE Travis Kelce is another one of the Chiefs’ offensive weapons. He is coming off of a season in which he caught 105 passes for 1,416 yards and 11 touchdowns. He is one of the best tight ends in the NFL and should continue to be a big part of the Chiefs’ offense in 2021.
The Chiefs also have two running backs that they can use in their offense. Clyde Edwards-Helaire was drafted with the 32nd overall pick in 2020 and had a great rookie season, rushing for 803 yards and 4 touchdowns while also catching 45 passes for 438 yards and 1 touchdown. Le’Veon Bell was signed by the team this offseason after being released by the Jets. He is a two-time All-Pro running back and should see a good amount of touches in Kansas City’s offense.
The Chiefs’ quarterback
The Chiefs’ quarterback, Alex Smith, is a game manager. He’s not going to light up the scoreboard, but he’s not going to make many mistakes either. That’s why the Chiefs drafted Juju Smith-Schuster. They needed a receiver who could make plays downfield and in the red zone.
Smith-Schuster is a big target at 6’1″, 215 pounds. He has good speed and is a physical receiver. He’s also a good route runner. The Chiefs are hoping that he can be their version of Anquan Boldin, a big, physical receiver who can make plays in traffic.
The Chiefs also have another big receiver in Tyreek Hill. Hill is more of a speedster, but he’s also been known to make some tough catches in traffic. The addition of Smith-Schuster should give the Chiefs two big, physical receivers who can make plays downfield and in the red zone.
Juju’s Potential Impact
The Kansas City Chiefs made a splash in the offseason by signing former Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Juju Smith-Schuster. Juju is a young, talented receiver who should provide a big boost to the Chiefs’ offense. In this article, we’ll discuss what Juju Smith-Schuster brings to the Kansas City Chiefs and how he could potentially impact the team.
On the Chiefs’ offense
The Kansas City Chiefs offense is already one of the most dynamic and explosive in the NFL. With the addition of Juju Smith-Schuster, they become even more dangerous. His ability to make plays in the passing game and create mismatches will only make Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs’ offense more dangerous.
On the Chiefs’ passing game
The 6-foot-1, 215-pound JuJu Smith-Schuster is a physical specimen. He’s got good size, good speed (4.54 40-yard dash), and is an excellent route runner. He’s also a very good blocker, which is something that the Chiefs have lacked at the receiver position for a while now.
In his three years with the Steelers, Smith-Schuster has 193 catches for 2,873 yards and 17 touchdowns. His best year came in 2018 when he had 111 catches for 1,426 yards and seven touchdowns. He followed that up with a solid 2019 season where he had 42 catches for 552 yards and three touchdowns.
The biggest knock on Smith-Schuster has been his tendency to drop passes. In his three years in the NFL, he has 20 drops, which is the second-most among all receivers.
On the Chiefs’ overall Super Bowl chances
The general consensus is that the Chiefs’ Super Bowl chances improve with the addition of Juju Smith-Schuster. NFL Network’s Michael Silver said the Chiefs are “clearly the team to beat” in the AFC after the trade, while ESPN’s Bill Barnwell wrote that Kansas City is now “the clear-cut favorite” to win the conference.
The main reason for this is that Smith-Schuster gives the Chiefs another very good receiver to go along with Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce. He’s still just 24 years old and in his prime, and he should be a good complement to Hill and Kelce. He’s not as fast as Hill, but he’s a good route runner with good hands who can make plays after the catch. In his four NFL seasons, he has 202 catches for 2,842 yards and 17 touchdowns.
The biggest question about Smith-Schuster is whether he can stay healthy. He missed three games last season with a knee injury and seven games in 2019 with a concussion and a hamstring injury. He also missed two games in 2018 with a groin injury. If he can stay on the field, he should be a big help to quarterback Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs’ offense.