Mike Tomlin Reveals Why Steelers Traded Diontae Johnson

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Written By Maya Cantina

(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Pittsburgh Steelers longtime owner Art Rooney II made it clear after another mediocre performance by his team during the NFL season that things need to change, and he’s tired of early exits and failed expectations.

With Rooney making his displeasure public knowledge, many believed the Steelers might finally part ways with longtime head coach Mike Tomlin, but the team decided against going in that direction, as he will coach the team for at least one more season.

Now that Tomlin is under pressure to right the ship next season, as his job could be on the line in 2024, the team’s offensive deficiencies needed to be addressed, which meant some changes were on the horizon.

Ultimately, the Steelers have made several deals this offseason, one of which involved trading wide receiver Diontae Johnson to the Carolina Panthers.

According to Brooke Pryor of ESPN, Tomlin recently talked about why the team dealt Johnson to the Panthers.

“We traded player for player, we had an opportunity to get [CB Donte Jackson]. He’s is a guy that we’ve evaluated probably several times since he’s been in the league. … [The Panthers] needed Diontae, we needed D Jack. It was a good exchange,” Tomlin said.

With the upcoming draft being filled with promising young talent at the wide receiver position, the Steelers could use the draft as a way to bring in some talent downfield.

Along with trading Johnson, the Steelers signed veteran quarterback Russell Wilson to a short-term deal and traded for Justin Fields in a deal with the Chicago Bears.

However, it won’t do much good to upgrade the quarterback position if they’ve got no one to throw to during the 2024 campaign outside of George Pickens.

It’ll be interesting to see what moves the team makes from here on out to better their situation on the offensive side of the football.

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