Entrance Physical: CB Cory Trice Jr.

Welcome to a new series, the “entrance physicals.” We will evaluate each new player drafted by the Steelers with a focus on current health and past injuries. As always, these reports are based on publicly available information, including player interviews, injury reports and reliable news sources. I have no access to the players’ medical records and have not examined them or discussed this with them unless otherwise noted.

With the 241st pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, the Steelers selected Purdue cornerback Cory Trice Jr. If Georgia tight end Darnell Washington wasn’t the steal of the draft, then Trice should own that title. The fifth-year senior transitioned from safety to corner his freshman year. While he certainly saw success at his new position, his time at Purdue was hampered by injury, which subsequently caused him to slide down draft boards for many teams. Most seventh-round picks struggle to make the final 53-man roster, but Trice, who could easily have been selected on Day 2, appears healthy and ready to contribute to the Steelers’ secondary.


Age 22 (5/30/2000) Height 6′ 3″ Weight 206 lbs BMI 25.7


2017 (high school)

Left ankle fracture sustained during the Week 9 Christian County versus Graves County game.  Trice was noted to be wearing a boot and using crutches in a photo tweeted two weeks later by local sports writer Chris Jung:

Trice apparently did not require surgery and initially seemed to hold out hope that he would return to finish the season. He missed the remaining four football games but was wearing shoes and no longer using crutches when Purdue Head Coach Jeff Brohm visited him at his school in late November 2017. Trice returned to training three months after the injury and was cleared to play basketball, his other varsity sport, for a Jan. 4, 2018, game. In an interview with Scott Brown of a few days later, Trice described himself as 70% recovered and felt it would take another month. He won the school’s dunk contest five weeks later.

There are no specific details available with regard to the extent of the fracture or the bones involved. It certainly seems that this was treated without surgery, indicating that it was most likely a minor fracture with no joint instability or bone misalignment.

2018 (redshirt freshman)

Played in three games at safety, logging one tackle. No documented injury.


Moved to cornerback, playing in 11 games. Listed as a game-time decision for the Week 11 game at Northwestern but he was cleared and played 67 snaps that day. He was ruled out of the Week 14 regular season finale versus Indiana with an undisclosed injury.


Played all six regular-season games in a shortened season due to the pandemic. No documented injury.


High ankle sprain, which occurred during practice prior to the Week 3 game. He was sidelined for the next two games. He dressed for the Week 5 game versus Minnesota and participated in pregame warmups but did not play. There is no confirmation as to which ankle was injured.

Left ACL tear, which occurred two days later on the Monday of the bye week practice prior to the Week 6 game when he was scheduled to make his return from his ankle sprain. As Trice relayed on the Jung Sports Podcast, he had no significant pain and was unaware he was injured until the following morning when he noted knee swelling. The diagnosis was confirmed by an MRI. He underwent surgery and was out for the remainder of the season.

Spring 2022

Trice was still recovering from his ACL repair and did not participate in spring practices.


Trice was cleared by team physicians and trainers to remove the knee brace he wore during preseason practices prior to the start of the regular season. He wore it for the first four games, finally practicing and then playing without it in Week 5 at Minnesota.

Groin injury sustained in the Week 8 loss to Wisconsin.

Trice was replaced following the second play of the first series. He was seen jogging on the sideline, per reporter Mike Carmin but did not return to the game. Trice most likely was injured on the first play making a tackle on Badgers receiver Skyler Bell and then tried to test it on the second play before leaving the field:

Trice chases Bell down and swings around him to make the tackle, planting on his right leg.

He had the following bye week to further recover. Speaking to the media two days prior to the Week 10 game versus Iowa, Brohm stated that Trice was limited in practice but was expected to play barring any setbacks. Given how thin the depth was at cornerback at the time — Purdue had safeties practicing at cornerback during that week — it seems that Trice needed the time to recover as opposed to the team being cautious about easing him back. He did return and started every game for the rest of the season but opted out of the Citrus Bowl to begin his draft preparation.


Clean bill of health at this time. It is possible that past injuries, such as his ankle, could be a potential risk for re-injury or chronic damage in the future but none of the injuries that he has sustained necessarily raise significant concerns in that regard.

Trice will be two years out from his ACL repair when preseason starts so he should be fully recovered and feel confident in his knee.

Should be ready to participate in rookie minicamp and OTAs.

Level of Fitness: Excellent

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