The Steelers will walk into the 2021 NFL season with a new sheriff in the backfield. The organization decided it was time to draft a running back in the first round of the 2021 NFL draft as they decided to pick Najee Harris with the 24th selection. Harris has turned some heads in the Steelers organization with his work ethic and they have only seen a small sample size.
Many throughout the organization feel once Harris can find a way to get it going right away in the NFL he isn't going to look back and become one of the best running backs in the National Football League.
Ben Roethlisberger recently said Najee Harris is one of the hardest workers on the Steelers. There are no issues at all in regards to Harris's work ethic and many who have watched him throughout his time in Alabama know this as well. That is one of the reasons why the Steelers took Najee Harris in the first round even though they're getting destroyed over picking a first-round running back.
Harris has been working so hard that running back coach Eddie Faulkner says Harris needs to learn how to go home and watch tv. Faulkner told Harris one night that he needed to go home because Harris kept on working on his craft on the football field. That seems to be one of the biggest things Harris needs to work on at the NFL level is to figure out his workload because throughout high school and college he has always given 110% effort.
One wide receiver on the Steelers believes Harris will take a lot of pressure off of the receivers during the 2021 season. That may be true, but Harris will really help Ben Roethlisberger from throwing the ball 50 times a game too. Having a running game in the NFL will help both the offensive side of the ball and the defensive side of the ball too. If you want to slow the game down a bit you can use Najee Harris in many different ways in order to eat up the clock. That is a very big positive going into the 2021 season for the Steelers.
Diontate Johnson on Najee Harris: “It takes a lot of pressure off the receiver. Obviously, having a guy like him to catch out of the backfield is special. Because it also puts a lot of pressure on the defense. They also have to worry about covering a running back who is capable of obviously catching passes like a receiver. Just being around him, seeing his work ethic and how hard he practices, it shows that he’s hungry and that he’s ready to play.”
Johnson is right that Harris will now walk into Pittsburgh as a 'hybrid' running back. The Steelers have not had a running back like Harris since Le'Veon Bell and we all saw what Bell was able to do in Pittsburgh... Just imagine what Harris will do if the Steelers offensive line can finally get their run blocking figured out...
Harris is the All-Time leading running back in rushing yards at Alabama surpassing Derrick Henry. We have all seen what Henry is doing at the NFL level. Let's just sit back and watch Najee Harris work in Pittsburgh and hopefully he will become one of the best running backs at the NFL level as Henry has become.