ESPN Highlights Steelers As ‘Best Fit’ For FA Cornerback Rock Ya-Sin

With veteran cornerback Cameron Sutton set to hit free agency and potentially starring down a lucrative number of offers on the open market, the Pittsburgh Steelers will need to have a contingency plan in place in case they lose their homegrown cornerback.

That contingency plan could be former Indianapolis Colts and Las Vegas Raiders cornerback Rock Ya-Sin, at least according to ESPN’s Matt Bowen.

In a piece highlighting the best fit for each of the top 50 free agents in the NFL Tuesday morning, Bowen highlighted the Steelers as the best fit for Ya-Sin, who comes in at No. 34 in ESPN’s top 50 free agents ranking.

“How strong the market for Ya-Sin ends up being will play a role in the Steelers’ ability to make a move, but I like the fit — especially if Pittsburgh can’t re-sign Sutton,” Bowen writes regarding the Steelers as a fit for Ya-Sin in free agency. “Ya-Sin is well-versed in both man and zone schemes and has a physical approach to the game, so he would upgrade the perimeter of the Steelers’ secondary. He had seven pass breakups this season and allowed just one touchdown receptions as the nearest defender, according to NFL Next Gen Stats.”

Ya-Sin should be a name many are familiar with ahead of free agency, considering the dot-connecting that Steelers Depot’s own Jonathan Heitritter did last week. The Steelers previously showed interest in Ya-Sin ahead of the 2019 NFL Draft, bringing the Temple product in for a pre-draft visit, while also meeting with him at the NFL Scouting Combine at Indianapolis that year.

Here’s what Heitritter had to say about Ya-Sin as an option for the Steelers last week:

“The Steelers look primed to cut Ahkello Witherspoon, William Jackson III, or both to free up cap space to retain Cam Sutton who had a great season in 2022. However, with James Pierre also scheduled to be a restricted free agent, the Steelers would only have Levi Wallace, Arthur Maulet, and Sutton back should they re-sign him. Even if Sutton and Pierre are re-signed, they need to add another body to the room with experience. CB Rock Ya-Sin fits the bill as a player that received first-round buzz to the Steelers in 2019 before going to the Colts in the second round.

“Ya-Sin has had an up-and-down career thus far with the Colts and Raiders, starting 38 of 52 games while totaling 183 total stops (154 solo), two TFLs, 27 PBUs, two INTs, two forced fumbles, and two fumble recoveries. Still, he’s a physical CB that is a willing tackler and fits the mold of what Pittsburgh looks for in feisty, competitive CBs. Signing Ya-Sin would alleviate the need to select a CB high in this year’s draft while giving Pittsburgh a player they showed interest in during the 2019 pre-draft process, giving the team an experienced defender in the secondary.”

Though it is a new front office overall with GM Omar Khan entering his first full offseason in charge, along with assistant GM Andy Weidl and Director of Pro Scouting Sheldon White, some of the dot connecting and basing potential moves off of previous history with the franchise still is plausible overall. The Steelers aren’t drastically going to overhaul their way of doing business when it comes to free agency and the NFL Draft.

Considering the Steelers did the work in the past on Ya-Sin and have seen him in person in recent seasons in matchups with the Raiders and Colts, it is certainly very possible that there remains interest there, especially if Sutton ends up walking in free agency, creating a major hole on the roster for the Steelers that will need to be plugged ahead of the 2023 NFL Draft.

As for Sutton in Bowen’s piece, the Steelers’ cornerback lands at No. 28 overall in ESPN’s top 50 free agents ranking, with his best fit as the San Francisco 49ers on the open market under new defensive coordinator Steve Wilks in the Bay Area.

To Top
error: Alert: Content is protected !!