Martavis Bryant is facing a four-game suspension after breaking the NFL's substance abuse policy, more specifically for using marijuana.
As a Steelers fan, I read this breaking news story and my head instantly fell into my hands.
The Steelers are now going into Foxboro on opening night without their starting running back (Le'Veon Bell), their starting center (Maurkice Pouncey), and now their second string receiver.
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Bryant is appealing the suspension but has a very low chance of winning that appeal, if the suspension does somehow get reduced he will still miss opening night meaning the Steelers face the defending Superbowl champions without three marquee players.
This sort of breaking news has crushed my hopes of the Steelers putting on an offensive showcase versus the Patriots. Without Bell, Bryant, and Pouncey, the Steelers offense is going to be a whole lot less dynamic, with the majority of the offense revolving around getting Antonio Brown the ball. Not a bad thing, but it makes it much easier for the Patriots to defend against.
Such crushing news for Steeler fans and teammates alike, the Steelers were in a prime position to go into Foxboro and give the defending Superbowl champs a big slap across the face with their high powered offense.
The offense is still captained by Ben Roethlisberger and I have confidence the Steelers can still pull out the win versus the Patriots, but it will be a much different game without so many marquee names in the fray.
Players like Markus Wheaton, DeAngelo Williams, and Sammy Coates are going to have to step up their workload and carry more of the burden for at least the first two games until Bell comes back.
With Bryant facing a four-game suspension, the much-hyped receiver who was expected to have a phenomenal season will have to wait to make an impact on the 2015 Steelers.