Considering JuJu Smith-Schuster has danced around on a fair share of the NFL's team logos at various 50-yard lines around the league, he should feel ready to tromp around the football field in a new uniform wearing another logo in the 2021 season.
Of course, there's always the possibility that he returns to the Steelers but that could be difficult given their salary cap situation. He is one of the team's many important in-house free agents that might depart considering Pittsburgh will have difficult decisions to make depending on what the 2021 salary cap comes out to. Ultimately, it comes down to money, though Smith-Schuster said in a statement that he wants to remain in Pittsburgh.
However, we have to accept that there's the real possibility that JuJu's last game as a Steeler came in their loss to the Browns on Wild Card weekend. Where could he end up? Despite reports that he wanted to establish his brand in a bigger market, the charismatic wideout debunked those rumors.
So to break it down... he wants to stay in Pittsburgh, the Steelers may not be able to keep him around due to financial reasons, and the rumors that he only wants to look at a bigger market are "completely 100% false." Sounds like enough intrigue to analyze some teams to watch as his free agency nears, don't you think? The following list takes everything into account — obviously, the Philadelphia Eagles would love to get a guy like Smith-Schuster, but they're in cap hell — and is by no means a comprehensive look at every organization in play.
The T.Y. Hilton era may be coming to an end in Indianapolis, but even if they do bring him back, he didn't seem to be the same receiver in 2020 as he was in past seasons. He's predominantly a deep threat, while promising rookie Michael Pittman Jr. is a big body at 6-foot-4. JuJu, though, could settle in as a nice in between and give, uh, whoever the Colts quarterback is in 2021 a nice boost. They, too, have plenty of money in the bank, though how they deal with their own free agents will determine their financial outlook further.
JuJu Smith-Schuster and the Miami lifestyle just seems like a good fit. His charisma and energy would bring a whole lot of life to the Miami offense after Tua Tagovailoa failed to connect with his receivers on a consistent basis.
The NFL Draft could be where the Dolphins look to land a wide receiver, as it would make a lot of sense for them to roll with Heisman winner (and former Tua teammate) Devonta Smith with their No. 3 overall pick. They could also go with an offensive lineman or even a quarterback if they're not sold on Tagovailoa. But even if they do opt for Smith, with a strong defense and a good amount of cap room to spare, why not revamp the corps even further?
If they don't get Smith in the draft, though, the Dolphins may look for an Allen Robinson, Chris Godwin or Kenny Golladay type, as they seem to be more proven No. 1 wideouts in an offense than Smith-Schuster.
Washington Football Team
Though the quarterback dilemma in Washington is the most important situation to figure out this offseason, it would be nice for that quarterback to have more than one consistent wide receiver. Logan Thomas made strides in 2020 at tight end, but besides Terry McLaurin, no one emerged as that definitive WR2. Smith-Schuster is still young and could be had for a while without breaking the bank, meaning the organization wouldn't need to address this position for years to come.
Their skill sets are similar in some ways and different in others, and JuJu could work well underneath while McLaurin works to take the top off the secondary.