2023 NFL Draft

Ike Taylor Calls Miami (FL) CB Tyrique Stevenson ‘A Dog’, Says He’ll Go Higher Than Expected In The Draft

While this is the time of year when rumors run rampant and smokescreens are thrown out in the media in attempt to disguise teams’ intentions prior to the draft, we often can find tidbits of information that can tie specific prospects to teams that are interested in taking them.

Ike Taylor recently spoke with co-host Mark Bergin on the Bleav in Steelers Podcast and talked about Pittsburgh’s recent signings, including S Keanu Neal and NT Breiden Fehoko, as well as Taylor’s Pro Day visits to Florida, Miami, and UCF as a member of the Steelers scouting staff. During his during time on the scouting trail, Taylor evaluated a handful of DB prospects in this draft class. When asked about CB Tyrique Stevenson, Taylor didn’t hide his feelings of what he thinks of the Miami (FL) product.

“I’m going to use one word for Tyrique: dog,” Taylor said on the podcast. “As my former assistant head coach and D-line, Coach John Mitchell, the pioneer… he say ‘Either you a dog or you are a boy dog.’ Stevenson is a boy dog if you know what I’m saying.”

The Steelers haven’t been shy in showing their pre-draft interest in Stevenson, bringing him for a pre-draft visit while also sending Taylor to watch him at his Pro Day. When looking at Stevenson as a prospect, he matches what Pittsburgh has traditionally looked for at the position, standing 6’0, weighing 198lb while running a 4.45 40 and posting an impressive 38.5” vert and 10’5” broad at the NFL Combine. He had 21 PBUs and three INTs in college, showing physicality in his game both in coverage as well as a run defender. That is where Taylor’s praise of Stevenson as a “dog” likely stems from.

Stevenson has generally been viewed as a Day Two prospect in what is a deep CB class with the likes of Christian Gonzalez, Devon Witherspoon, and Joey Porter Jr. often mentioned as the top names in the class. Bergin mentioned to Taylor that Stevenson is being projected as a Day Two or maybe a Day Three selection in the draft. Taylor laughed and responded in disbelief.

“They be lying.” Taylor said.

This response from Taylor matches up with the report by KPRC’s Aaron Wilson that Stevenson is viewed as a potential first-round pick for the Steelers. As Alex Kozora stated in the article, Stevenson at #17 seems a little rich and eerily similar to when Pittsburgh “reached” to select another former Miami CB in the first round: Artie Burns.

While Wilson’s report and Taylor’s thoughts on a player he got to watch up close and personal doesn’t mean that the Steelers will take Stevenson with their first-round pick, the interest is there. Stevenson could be a guy they target at #32 or #49 if they don’t pull the trigger on the first day of the draft.

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