Washington did not receive a single target in Thursday's 52-21 win over Carolina.
The rookie receiver played more offense snaps (46) than JuJu Smith-Schuster (42) but never saw a look from Ben Roethlisberger all game. This was the first time Washington failed to be targeted since Week 1 but it was his fourth game without a reception. With just seven catches for 66 yards and a touchdown this season he just isn't a significant piece of Pittsburgh's offense.
It wasn't known that Washington was dealing with any health concerns coming out of Sunday's 23-16 win over the Ravens until he showed up on the Steelers' estimated practice report Monday as a limited participant due to the knee issue. Washington's ability to practice fully should clear up any worry about his availability for Thursday's showdown with the Panthers. Though the rookie delivered a meager stat line in Week 8 (two receptions for 17 yards on five targets), the fact that Washington played 70 of the Steelers' 81 offensive snaps suggests he's currently locked in as the third man on the depth chart behind starters Antonio Brown and JuJu Smith-Schuster. Behind that trio, Ryan Switzer (13 snaps) ranked a distant fourth among Pittsburgh wideouts with a 16 percent snap share.
Washington caught two of five targets for 17 yards during Sunday's 23-16 win over Baltimore.
A healthy scratch in Week 8 Washington returned to action but didn't contribute much despite the five targets, which matched his most in a game. The receptions were his first since Week 4 - also against Baltimore - giving him seven for 66 yards and a touchdown on the season. Expect a similar performance against a tough Carolina defense on Thursday in Week 10.
Washington is active for Sunday's game against the Ravens, Ray Fittipaldo of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.
After corralling only five of 14 targets through the first six games of the season while logging double-digit snap counts each time out, Washington was a surprise healthy scratch in the Week 8 win over the Browns. It appears Washington's banishment was only a temporary one that allowed the rookie to hit the reset button, as the wideout indicated that he received more reps during practice this week. He'll suit up Sunday while veteran Justin Hunter heads to the inactive list in a coach's decision, but don't expect Washington to have a major role in the passing attack behind fellow wideouts Antonio Brown, JuJu Smith-Schuster, tight ends Vance McDonald and Jesse James and running back James Conner. All five of those players have consistently drawn more targets than Washington this season.
Washington said that he earned more reps in practice this week, which could translate to an increased role in the Pittsburgh offense Sunday in Baltimore, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com reports.
Before any speculation can be made on what Washington's role might look like, the rookie must first earn an active status Sunday, something he wasn't able to do in the Week 8 win over the Browns. The healthy scratch came after Washington had logged double-digit snaps in each of the first six contests. Even if Washington steps back in as Pittsburgh's No. 3 or 4 receiver, it's unlikely he'll be a major factor in the passing game while target monsters Antonio Brown and JuJu Smith-Schuster are both healthy and able. Running back James Conner and tight ends Vance McDonald and Jesse James have also consistently ranked as higher-priority options in the passing game for Ben Roethlisberger than the 22-year-old wideout.
|11||11/18/18||@ JAC||1:00 pm|
|12||11/25/18||@ DEN||4:25 pm|
|14||12/9/18||@ OAK||4:25 pm|
|16||12/23/18||@ NO||4:25 pm|