Steelers May Add Martavis Bryant to WR Corps

Martavis Bryant's NFL journey faces another critical juncture.

by Nouman Rasool
Steelers May Add Martavis Bryant to WR Corps
© Marc Serota/Getty Images

In a recent turn of events, the Dallas Cowboys have decided to release Martavis Bryant, the former Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver, as reported by Tom Pelissero of NFL Network. This development adds an intriguing twist to the speculation about potential targets for the Steelers as they seek to bolster their wide receiver lineup.

Bryant, a familiar face in Pittsburgh, returned to the NFL late last season, marking his comeback after a four-year hiatus. His suspension, initially indefinite, was levied by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell due to multiple failed drug tests for marijuana.

Although Bryant was reinstated following a change in the NFL's substance abuse policy, his time back on the field has been short-lived. After joining the Cowboys' practice squad on November 7, he was released by January 4 without participating in any games.

Despite re-signing him for the 2024 season, the Cowboys opted to release Bryant again after acquiring Ryan Flournoy in the draft and exploring other free agent options, including a meeting with Zay Jones.

Bryant's Uncertain Future

The release raises questions about Bryant's future and whether the Steelers might consider bringing back the 32-year-old receiver.

Having spent the initial seasons of his career in Pittsburgh, Bryant showcased his talent with 126 receptions, 1,917 yards, and 17 touchdowns before his trade to the Oakland Raiders in 2018. However, his stint with the Raiders was cut short by the suspension, and he has not played in an NFL game since.

Despite his challenging past, Bryant's experience includes stints with the Toronto Argonauts and Edmonton Elks in the Canadian Football League, and he even ventured into the arena of indoor football. Most recently, Bryant took to the field with the Vegas Vipers in the XFL last spring.

The Steelers, still on the lookout for a strong outside receiver to team up with George Pickens, have faced challenges in securing a suitable candidate through trades, with efforts to acquire Brandon Aiyuk, Deebo Samuel, and Courtland Sutton falling through.

Bryant's potential return to Pittsburgh could offer a unique opportunity. Known for his deep-threat capabilities, his ability to impact the game could be lessened by age and past controversies, but his familiarity with the Steelers’ system and his undeniable talent might make him a valuable asset in a receiver corps that's taking chances on unconventional options.

As the Steelers weigh their options, Bryant remains a high-risk, high-reward possibility that could either reignite his NFL career or serve as a brief experiment in an ongoing search for receiver talent. The Steelers' next steps will be crucial as they decide whether to revisit a former connection or continue exploring new avenues to strengthen their team.