Whether it's being caused by the loss of Ben Roethlisberger or the loss of Antonio Brown as the focal point for opposing defenses, JuJu Smith-Schuster's production has taken a huge step back in 2019.
Week 9 was no exception, as the 22-year-old caught just three passes for 16 yards in a win over the Indianapolis Colts.
The disappointing stat-line (which came on only five targets) gave Smith-Schuster just 4.6 PPR fantasy points on the game. That marks the third time in the last five games he has failed to notch even five points, and brings his average to just 11.9 per game on the year. That's down from both his 18.6-point average in 2018 and his 13.7 from his 2017 rookie campaign.
With Roethlisberger out for the season and no other budding stars in the Steelers' receiving corps, the cause of these struggles isn't overly important because the takeaway is the same either way — JuJu is a long shot to turn things around down the stretch.
Smith-Schuster does still have a few great matchups working in his favor for the second half of the season, getting the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 12, Arizona Cardinals in Week 14 and the New York Jets in fantasy football championship weekend in Week 16. At this stage, though, he should be considered a matchup-dependent fantasy play, not the must-start it looked like he was set to be heading into the season.
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Jason Schandl is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Jason Schandl also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Jaymun. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.