The Pittsburgh Steelers have a clear weak spot in 2017

FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 22: Ross Cockrell
FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 22: Ross Cockrell /

The Pittsburgh Steelers have made major strides over the offseason but still, find themselves towards the bottom of the pack in one area.

Ross Cockrell wasn’t the biggest superstar on the roster last season. His role as a starter may have only been available due to the lack of talent the Steelers had at the position. But with a struggling preseason, Cockrell may not even be fit enough to carry the starting load on a team with an inferior cornerback position.

Outside of second-year corner, Artie Burns, the Steelers don’t have much going on at corner. Rookie, Cameron Sutton, is looking to be the next superstar corner in Pittsburgh, but will most likely play an inside role. So, with the team’s options low on the outside, they’re looking for just about anyone to step up.

Right now, it could be Coty Sensabaugh taking over the position. A player many believed would barely make the 53-man roster is now competing for the starting job. It may not be the prettiest battle, but with the struggles this position has had, anyone who’s capable of slowing opposing receivers is worthy of a shot.

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By trading for former Washington Redskin, Dashaun Phillips, the Steelers revealed they’re a little desperate to find talent. As roster hopefuls like Senquez Golson and Brian Allen continue to stay at the brink of practice squad, Pittsburgh is looking for anything they can before Week 1.

With most of the defense beginning to find their stride, Pittsburgh should have a decent season defending the football. The secondary may not be complete, but with guys like Burns, Sean Davis, and Mike Mitchell, it certainly won’t be anything terrible.

Teams will exploit this situation, though. Cockrell, Sensabaugh, William Gay, or whoever finds themselves as the starting corner will be a massive target for opposing quarterback. Until they find someone reliable enough to start, it could definitely hurt this team in many situations looking at their 2017 schedule.

The Steelers aren’t finding anyone right now. Heading into the third preseason game, they’re just looking to make one of these sub par players a temporary starter. But with no major trades being talked about, temporary could become permanent, at least for this year.

Until head coach, Mike Tomlin, and defensive coordinator, Keith Butler, find a player robust enough to be reliable in the secondary, this role could be a constant rotation. If neither Cockrell or Sensabaugh prove they’re able to play a starting position, the Steelers may even try Sutton on the outside.

Cornerback is a major issue right now. Pittsburgh’s defense isn’t going to struggle, but it will certainly give up plenty of plays on the outside if it has to rely on either of these two.

With two preseason games left, it’d be shocking to see the team make a move for a star corner. So, everyone should expect some big plays coming from opposite of Burns.

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Hopefully, it’s something Mike Mitchell is willing to put a little more effort into helping from safety.