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Zach Azzanni: Ray Charles Can See How Talented George Pickens Is

George Pickens
New Steelers wide receiver coach Zach Azzanni used a Ray Charles metaphor to describe just how talented George Pickens is. (Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports)

Zach Azzanni: Ray Charles Can See How Talented George Pickens Is

Let me get a few things out of the way on this George Pickens post before we proceed.

If you don’t know who Ray Charles is, Google is your friend in this situation. He was a blind musician. Obviously, there’s far more to the story but this is a sports website so we’ll keep it moving.

If you don’t know who Zach Azzanni is, he is the new wide receiver coach for the Arthur Smith offense being deployed in Pittsburgh.

Azzanni was asked about Pickens recently and he essentially said Ray Charles can see how talented for former Georgia wide receiver is. A lowkey funny response…

It’s right there for him,” Azzanni said recently, via Dale Lolley of Steelers.com. “He’s just got to . . . pick it up and take the cheese, do the things we asked him to do and he can do anything he wants. He’s that talented. I think you guys all know that. Ray Charles can see that. You don’t need to be a coach. So we know that’s out there for him if he wants it. Now, he’s just got to keep stacking the days and that’s my job, too.”

Pickens, 23, finished last season with 63 catches for 1,140 yards and five touchdowns. That’s with terrible QB play only receiving a 68.9% catchable target rate. If Russell Wilson can simply be average, Pickens should be in for a huge year.

Azzanni made it clear that Pickens is the number one receiver in the Steelers offense. When asked who will be the secondary and tertiary targets in the offense, his answer was less clear.

“I know that a lot [of] people look at the one, the two, the three,” Azzanni said. “Listen, these days we move everyone around and guys get good balls depending on matchups so that number thing is a little overrated to me. But yes, we’re trying to find the best three or four we can put out there for sure.”

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