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2024 NFL Draft

Steelers Trade for Brandon Aiyuk in Fox Sports Mock Draft

The Pittsburgh Steelers land Brandon Aiyuk in a draft day trade in a new mock draft done by Fox Sports.



Pittsburgh Steelers San Francisco 49ers WR Brandon Aiyuk
49ers wide receivers Brandon Aiyuk and Deebo Samuel celebrate after a touchdown, Sept. 11, 2023 - Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

An agent for San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk is doing a lot of work shooting down trade rumors about his client. That includes the idea that the Pittsburgh Steelers could make the trade for Aiyuk.

Just six days ago, agent Ryan Williams of Athletes First shut down a report that his client had requested a trade from the 49ers.

Thursday, he did it again, denying a report by AllSteelers that a Steelers team source “would be surprised” if a trade between the teams for Aiyuk didn’t happen at some point this offseason.

“Another “report” that couldn’t be more incorrect,” Willams wrote on X. “Fictional “journalism” should really stop.”

But in a new mock draft done by Fox Sports, the Steelers make the move to land Aiyuk, trading their first round selection to the 49ers. The 49ers land Cooper DeJean by doing it, but Pittsburgh lands a superstar wide receiver.

“Maybe you think pick No. 20 is rich for an All-Pro wide receiver, but I’m here to remind you the Titans fetched more when they sent A.J. Brown to Philadelphia two years ago. Aiyuk would massively upgrade the Steelers’ receiver corps, and the 49ers would then have two first-round picks to use in the same draft. With this first pick, I’ve got them bolstering their secondary with an all-around playmaker. Don’t be surprised if Kyle Shanahan decides to use DeJean as a return man and a gadget guy on offense, either,” they wrote.

The Steelers have reached out to the 49ers about Aiyuk, as has been reported by Steelers Now and many other outlets. Mike Florio of NBC Sports reported on Wednesday that their request was rebuffed.

“My understanding is that the Steelers placed a phone call a few weeks ago. And were told by the 49ers we’re not trading the guy,” Florio said in an appearance on 93.7 the Fan on Wednesday.

That gibes with what San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch has been saying about Aiyuk publicly, as well.

“I promise you, nothing’s going on there,” Lynch said of the trade rumors. “We’re actually talking to Brandon to try and figure something out. You know, we have a good history of working with the guys that we want to get done to get something done. So, can we do that? We’ll see. There’s a number of different directions that could go. But we appreciate the heck out of Brandon and what he is as a player. We want him to be a part of the Niners, so we’re going to work towards making that a reality.”

On NFL Total Access Monday, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network provided the latest on the Aiyuk trade rumors. Aiyuk recently unfollowed the San Francisco 49ers on Instagram, suggesting that he’s getting fed up with the team for not reaching his desired figure on a long-term deal.

“Now, as far as the trade request, I would agree with his agent. There has been no trade request,” Rapoport said. “Obviously there have been some teams though who know that all is not well and know that he wants a contract extension. Some receiver-needy teams have acquired over the last several months to see if he could be available. To my knowledge, the 49ers have not entertained any of those talks.”

According to offshore sportsbook, the Steelers are the favorites to land Aiyuk should he leave San Francisco. Aiyuk is heading into the last year of his rookie contract, and will play on the fifth-year option. But the 49ers have a cap crunch, and with Aiyuk needing an extension, that could be significant.

As it stands with the odds, Pittsburgh is the clear cut favorite with 2/1 odds. The Carolina Panthers and New England Patriots hold 6/1 odds while the Arizona Cardinals boast 7/1 odds and the Los Angeles Chargers finish it out with 9/1 odds. 

So, if the trade talks intensify, it seems the Steelers are expected to be in the driver’s seat for Aiyuk.