When Najee Harris decided to return to Alabama for the 2020 season, this wasn't what he had in mind. And when the Steelers spent their first-round pick in the 2021 NFL Draft on him, this wasn't what they had in mind, either.
Harris returned for another season with the Crimson Tide because he wanted to become a better receiver before making himself eligible for the NFL Draft because he believed he needed to improve in that area to enhance his value as a professional. And when the Steelers used the 24th pick in the first round on Harris, they weren't doing it to provide a boost to their passing attack.
But that's how things worked out on Sunday at Heinz Field during the Steelers 24-10 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals. Harris finished the game with 142 yards from scrimmage, with 40 of those yards coming on 14 carries and the other 102 coming on 14 receptions. Harris had a 20-yard run, and a 21-yard reception.
Harris' 14 receptions set a franchise record for catches in a game by a running back, and he finished three catches shy of the all-time franchise record, which is held by Antonio Brown (17 on Nov. 8, 2015 vs. the Oakland Raiders). Najee Harris is the Steelers Digest Player of the Week.
Also considered were wide receiver Chase Claypool, who caught nine passes for 96 yards; and safety Terrell Edmunds, who finished with five tackles and an interception.