Steelers Heath Miller Still Considered A Second Tier Tight End

It’s the dead time of year so we are due to have our share of player rankings by position over the course of the next month. On Wednesday, Chris Wesseling of NFL.com got the ball rolling with his look at the tight end position and chose to go with the tier approach.

After placing Jimmy GrahamRob GronkowskiVernon Davis in his top tier of tight ends, Wesseling listed Pittsburgh Steelers Heath Miller in his second tier along with Jordan CameronJulius ThomasJason Witten and Jermichael Finley.

Here is the blurb about Miller:

Miller, meanwhile, is the AFC’s answer to Davis. If Pittsburgh used Miller in a similar fashion to Graham, he would clear 70 receptions on an annual basis. It’s no coincidence that the Steelers got off to an 0-4 start as Miller worked his way back from an ACL and finished with the conference’s best record in the second half of the season once the tight end was back to full strength.

In my opinion, this is the right spot for Miller even though he only scored one touchdown in 2013. From Week 4 on, only six tight ends caught more passes than Miller in 2013 and the veteran’s 73.3% catch percentage was tops among those six.

Will Miller top 70 catches in 2014 now that the knee injury suffered at the end of the 2012 season is a distant memory? I wouldn’t rule it out. 60 catches, however, should be a slam dunk and Miller should also see his touchdown numbers increase quite a bit as well.

2013 Receptions Tight Ends Week 4-17

PLAYERTRGRECREC %YDSTD
Tony Gonzalez1027270.60%7667
Jimmy Graham1046360.60%85712
Antonio Gates936367.70%6483
Jordan Cameron876069.00%6483
Jason Witten885764.80%7026
Greg Olsen855767.10%6225
Heath Miller755573.30%5581
Charles Clay835566.30%5566
Martellus Bennett745371.60%6242
Julius Thomas705172.90%5948
Delanie Walker725170.80%4725