Diontae Johnson

Diontae Johnson

Height: 5-10
Weight: 183 lbs
Age: 27
College: Toledo
Pittsburgh Steelers

2023 Season Outlooks

Johnson is a bounce-back candidate after a weird 2022 where he scored zero touchdowns despite 16 red-zone targets and 14 end-zone targets. Working with then-rookie Kenny Pickett and backup Mitchell Trubisky, Johnson averaged a meek 10.6 PPR points per game despite finishing tied for sixth among wideouts with 147 targets. Counting all stats except touchdowns, Johnson would have finished 20th among wideouts in total PPR points scored. And of his 147 targets, 31 of them (21%) were deemed uncatchable, according to TRU Media. Is it that hard to expect some positive movement on both fronts this season to help Johnson reclaim his spot as a start-worthy Fantasy WR? Remember, in 2021 he averaged 16.7 PPR points per game with final-season Ben Roethlisberger slinging short targets at him. He's a good value grab in Round 5 in PPR leagues, but just a modest one in Round 6 in non-PPR.

Assuming Johnson doesn’t catch zero TDs again in 2023, he should bounce back to form and be the No. 1 WR in this run-heavy Steelers offense.

He’s been the team leader in targets in each of the last three seasons and will provide fantasy managers with a safe weekly floor.

What We Learned Last YearJohnson entered the 2022 season fresh off a WR8 overall finish in PRR and a two-year, $36.71 million contract extension. Unfortunately, the former third-round pick took a step back in 2022, finishing as the WR28 overall in PPR with a meager 10.6 points per game.Many of his fantasy woes were due to the simple fact that he didn’t catch a single TD.Johnson only managed four weekly finishes as a WR3 or better in PPR last year.Among 30 WRs who received 100+ targets in 2022, Johnson ranked 26th in PFF receiving grade.But to Johnson’s credit, his lack of success wasn’t all on him. QBs Mitchell Trubisky and Kenny Pickett didn’t exactly help. Johnson ranked dead last in passer rating when targeted (61.2) among WRs who saw 100+ targets last year.Still, Johnson led the Steelers in targets (147), target share (26.8%), and receptions (85).Despite the end zone woes, he recorded a historically strong zero-TD season. Among NFL WRs in the Super Bowl era who caught nary a receiving TD in a season, Johnson’s 2022 campaign ranks first in PPR points (180.7) and targets (147), third in receiving yards (882), and sixth in PPR points per game (10.63).
What to Expect in 2023Johnson is an obvious positive regression candidate that should probably catch a few TDs in 2023 and still be the top dog in the Steelers’ passing game.The wrinkle in his outlook is that the Steelers ranked 27th in pass rate following their bye week last year, and that’s when the offense saw its greatest success.If OC Matt Canada sticks with that plan, Johnson’s target volume may dip and lower his overall fantasy ceiling.On top of that, Johnson’s value will be somewhat at the mercy of the development of QB Kenny Pickett. If he can make greater strides in his development, Johnson should be a fine high-floor WR3/flex option in 2023 with room for WR2 upside.

Only one player in NFL history has gone a full season without a single TD despite catching at least 85 passes. That man is Johnson. The 2019 third-round pick finished no lower than 10th among WRs in snaps, routes and targets, while also handling 10 end zone targets (13th-most). Johnson continues to struggle with efficiency (his 6.50 YPT is dead last among 53 WRs with 200-plus targets over the last three seasons), but his volume has remained high and the TD deficiency was an outlier (he scored 20 TDs during his first three seasons). Especially with Kenny Pickett likely in for some Year 2 progression, Johnson is well positioned for a rebound campaign. The 26-year-old is a fringe WR2.

2023 Fantasy Football Rankings









2023 Fantasy Football Draft Projections

Rush Yds Rush TD Rec Rec Yds Rec TD
80.6 876.5 3.6

2023 Average Draft Position (ADP)



Pick 7.08



Pick 6.12



Pick 6.08



Pick 7.11

Injury Risk

Injury Risk:

Depth Chart

Depth Chart Not Available

Strength of Schedule

Average/Tough Season Ahead
Fantasy Playoffs