How Steelers 2023 draft picks fit into depth chart

Broderick Jones Missouri v Georgia
Broderick Jones Missouri v Georgia / Todd Kirkland/GettyImages
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Joey Porter Jr.

Even though Mike Tomlin probably knows Joey Porter Jr. better than any Steelers prospect he’s drafted, don’t expect him to get any favors. The Steelers have plenty of veterans on the roster at the cornerback position. Levi Wallace, Ahkello Witherspoon, and James Pierre will all start training camp above Porter. Furthermore, players like Chandon Sullivan and Arthur Maulet will compete for the slot corner position.

However, I still expect Porter to finish preseason as the #2 cornerback behind Patrick Peterson. Even though the Steelers are seemingly transitioning to a more zone-heavy defense, getting a press-man corner like Porter on the field is vital. If he can lock down one side of the field, that gives Mike Tomlin and Teryl Austin more flexibility to move players like Patrick Peterson, Minkah Fitzpatrick, and Damontae Kazee around. 

In college, Porter played more on the left side of the field, which is usually against the “X” receiver, a bigger receiver that wants to win vertically. He split his time between each side more during his final year at Penn State. Patrick Peterson has played on both sides pretty equally throughout his career.

But during his final two years in Pittsburgh, when his role was elevated, Cam Sutton mostly played on the right side of the field. This indicates that Peterson, who is somewhat similar to Sutton (more so than Porter, if anything), will play on the right while Porter will play on the left. 

Verdict: Starting Left/Boundary Cornerback