It doesn’t take a genius to see that the Pittsburgh Steelers need help at the cornerback position.
Last season the Steelers did a number of things well on defense. They finished top five in the NFL both in run defense and in sacks, but they gave up far too many passing yards for comfort. Even a high-powered offense like the Steelers can’t be expected to outscore their opponents through the air every single week.
So, Pittsburgh needs to find some upgrades. They can do that by using some of their draft capital (Ohio State’s Eli Apple is currently a very popular mock choice at number 25) or they can add talent through free agency.
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On that score there may be some news which indicates what Kevin Colbert and the front office is thinking.
According to a report by NFL media insider Ian Rapoport, the Steelers want to bring in free agent cornerback Brice McCain for a visit, who is also getting interest from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers:
McCain spent last season with the Miami Dolphins, appearing in 14 games and tallying 39 combined tackles.
The year before that of course he was a part of the Steelers secondary. He put up three interceptions and defended six passes total in 2014, in what amounted to the best year of his career.
Prior to that McCain spent five years with the Houston Texans.
While McCain is relatively undersized for a typical NFL cornerback (ESPN lists him at 5’9″ and 190 pounds) he does make sense for Pittsburgh on some levels. In 2015 Pro Football Focus ranked McCain number 70 overall at his position, which is not very good. A large part of that is due to a poor run defense rating, though. His pass coverage is his strongest suit and that’s the area where the team must improve most.
McCain was much more productive with the Steelers the year before and it seems that Pittsburgh knows how to get the most out of him. Perhaps he’s worth another look?