Steelers hope James Conner regains form after “unfortunate year”

Steely McBeam

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The prospects of Ben Roethlisberger‘s return from a season-ending shoulder injury was one of the chief topics of General Manager Kevin Colbert’s meeting with the media on Thursday, but it wasn’t the only one concerning hopes for better things for a key offensive player in 2020.

Running back James Conner dealt with shoulder and thigh injuries that kept him from playing in six games and caused him to miss time in a couple of others during the 2019 season. His production when healthy was down a bit from 2018 as well, but Colbert said the team still believes that Conner can get back to his previous form.

“James Conner had a disappointing season in James Conner’s viewpoint and ours, as well,” Colbert said, via Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “Our point to James was, ‘You had an unfortunate year.’ The year before that he was one of the best in the league. He’s still a young player. We think there’s something there. We know there’s talent there. We hope James can regain it. And, if he’s healthy, there’s no reason he shouldn’t. We don’t want to say we don’t have a starting running back because we feel we do.”

Colbert said he also hopes for a healthier season for wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster and tight end Vance McDonald as the Steelers try to find their way back to a winning record next season.