The Pittsburgh Steelers selected Joey Porter Jr. with the 32nd pick in the NFL Draft tonight and the goal is for him to be a shutdown cornerback in the NFL. What will help in Porter Jr. reaching such heights is the fact that he will be mentored by future Hall of Famer in Patrick Peterson.
Shortly after his selection, Porter Jr. made his way down to the Steelers facility. Interviewed by Missi Matthews and Mike Prisuta on the Steelers’ YouTube channel, he was asked what it means to be able to play with a legend like Peterson.
“I mean it means a lot, I’m going to pick his brain every day,” Porter Jr. said. “And I heard he’s great with IQ and he’s just going to have me calling him every day trying to figure out ‘What’s about this, what’s about that, about the game?’ and I’m proud. I know he’s happy for me and it’s time to work.”
This past week, Porter Jr. was interviewed by Patrick Peterson and Bryant McFadden on the All Things Covered podcast. Now, Porter Jr. will be able to talk to Peterson every day.
Porter Jr. is a good a prospect and there is a reason he was projected to go early in the NFL Draft. However there are some areas for Porter Jr. to improve as there are with all rookies. Luckily for Porter Jr. he gets to be in the same meetings as one of the smartest and most experienced cornerbacks in the NFL. This may help limit some of the learning curve from college to the NFL as Peterson will be teaching him constantly this season.
Peterson isn’t in the Steelers’ long-term plan at cornerback but Porter Jr. is. It is vital that he pans out and becomes a shut-down cornerback since the Steelers play in a conference loaded with quarterback and wide receiver talent. The team already has a good pass rush, but for almost a decade now the pass defense has been Pittsburgh’s Achilles heel save for a couple seasons.
Now they have a chance to add a great rookie talent to the secondary that already has All-Pro safety Minkah Fitzpatrick. If Porter learns the tricks of the trade from Peterson, the Steelers may have an elite cornerback and safety on the back end for years to come, ones to pair with a generational pass rusher in T.J. Watt.
The Steelers and defense are synonymous. With Patrick Peterson mentoring Joey Porter Jr., Pittsburgh could be getting a finishing piece.