The Steelers are in unfamiliar territory at 2-6 under head coach Mike Tomlin in 2022.
But after trading receiver Chase Claypool to the Bears on Tuesday, Tomlin told reporters on Wednesday that the deal was about adding a draft pick for a player at a position where Pittsburgh feels it has quality depth.
“With the Chase deal, it was about draft capital and value for us,” Tomlin said in his press conference. “The Chicago Bears’ second-round pick is a pick that we value, and we’re excited about what that brings us. But it’s more than just being excited about capital. We’ve got some games left to play and we feel really comfortable with the depth that we have at Chase’s position, the wide receiver position, and more specifically, we’re really comfortable with our playmaking ability inside. He’s made the majority of his plays to this point in the season inside.
“Not only at the wideout position, but that’s a space that we’re really comfortable with, with Pat Freiermuth as well being a significant component of our attack on the interior portions of the field. So, that depth coupled with Pat’s presence and development is what allowed us to feel comfortable in terms of moving him and acquiring that draft capital.”
Claypool had caught 32 passes for 311 yards with a touchdown this season.
“He’s been making plays when called upon, and that’s what I mean when I’m talking about that I’m comfortable with the emerging depth at our receiver position,” Tomlin said. “He’s been making plays when called upon, and I think based on what we’ve seen thus far, it’s reasonable to expect that to continue.”
Sims has just two catches this season, but has taken three carries for 16 yards. He’s also averaged 8.3 yards per punt return and 29.7 yards per kick return.
The Steelers have their bye this week before hosting the Saints in Week 10.