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Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Chase Claypool is heading into his third season in the league with the utmost confidence in himself.
Claypool is likely to become the No. 1 option for whomever the Steelers’ quarterback is – Kenny Pickett, Mason Rudolph or Mitchell Trubisky. He said Monday he thinks he’s more than just a top receiver in Pittsburgh, but one of the best in the league.
“I’m going to say, my second year, I was a better player than I was my first year,” he said in a recent interview on the “I AM ATHLETE” podcast. “The plays just didn’t work out, right? Some of the plays just didn’t go my way. I didn’t make some plays I need to make. But as a football player, understanding the game, knowing what to do, knowing where to be, I was better. So I’m going to be better this year.
“And just like you said, understanding I’m not normal – I feel that way when I’m on the field. I know for a fact I am not like the rest of the guys in the NFL. I know I’m a top-five receiver. I know I’m a top-three receiver.”
Claypool had 62 catches for 873 yards and nine touchdowns in his rookie season. He had 59 catches for 860 yards and two touchdowns.
He said his goal for this season is 10 touchdowns and more than 1,000 yards receiving. DIontae Johnson had more than 1,000 receiving yards last season. The last receiver to have 10 or more touchdowns was Antonio Brown in 2018.
“When I’m working, I’m like, ‘I’m a dog.’ I’m gonna dog people that are lining up across from me, too,” Claypool added. “And I’ve just got to bring that confidence and I’ve got to bring that spirit and I’ve just got to show people. And it’s going to happen. And we’re going to rewind this and we’re going to see this clip in a little bit and they’re going to be like, ‘Damn, he was right.’”
Claypool told Fox News Digital in May he still expects the Steelers to be good no matter who is the starting quarterback.
“It makes for a great competition between those three. Those guys want to come out on top. No matter who it is, we’re going to be pretty good,” he said.