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Omar Khan Hopes Joey Porter Jr. Is ‘Even More Motivated’ After Falling Out Of First Round

The Pittsburgh Steelers drafting the son of Joey Porter was, I think, one of the indisputably great stories of the 2023 NFL Draft, even if it took a day longer than many thought it might. But that story still has a lot left to be written, and perhaps that delay will have a part to play in it.

Joey Porter Jr., cornerback out of Penn State, was expected by most to go in the first round. The Steelers took him with the first pick of the second round. In between, as cameras later showed, he got some motivational talk from Sr. about what it means—and what it doesn’t mean—to fall in the draft. And how to use it productively.

“That was awesome. I saw it last night”, said the man who drafted him, Omar Khan, referring to the video of father and son. The Steelers general manager was on KDKA’s DVE Morning Show yesterday with Randy Baumann. “That’s awesome. I hope he’s even more motivated now. That was awesome to see”.

That’s the conclusion a lot of people reached after watching the video in question. The Porters attended the first night of the draft, expecting to have the opportunity to walk the stage. “They want to see a pissed-off football player, now they got one”, the senior Porter said. “Now you’ve been motivated to another level. Because we’ve got something to prove. And take it personal. Because you should”.

Joey Porter Sr. was drafted by the Steelers in the third round of the 1999 NFL Draft, before he was a Sr. He went on to have a 13-year NFL career, including eight years in Pittsburgh, earning four Pro Bowls and All-Pro distinctions along the way.

That Joey Porter Jr. had the bloodlines was never in question. His dad was a great player. But the fact that he grew up at an early age in that Steelers environment, being in the locker room, is an unquantifiable commodity. They’ve been scouting him since he was born.

“I remember sometimes saying, ‘Hey, who is that that’s running around? Settle him down’. That was little Joey”, Khan recalled of seeing Porter’s son at the team’s facility as a young boy. “That was years and years ago, it’s crazy. But the city is gonna love getting to know him. He is just a great, great, great young man. I think he’s gonna be a real asset in the community”.

As mentioned, the Porters didn’t stick around after the first round had gone by, but they weren’t far when the Steelers selected him with the first pick of the second day of the draft. They drove to the facility that same night, and from then on, the past 24 hours were in the past.

“It really hit me, the personal part of this, when they came in that night to the facility after we drafted him later that night and he had a press conference here”, Khan said. “When I saw the smile on Joey Jr., Joey Sr., and Christy Porter, his mom, it was just awesome, awesome, awesome to see”.

Hopefully they’ll all be smiling for years to come. He’s not here to deliver a feel-good story. He’s here to deliver lockdown play at the cornerback position and to help deliver what his father once had a part in, which is another Super Bowl win.

He wouldn’t be here if he didn’t have the talent to be here, and if he’s a little more hacked off than he expected to be because he was given the impression that he would have been off the board no later than 17, then all the better. It’s in his power to make the fact that he was “only” a second-round pick an irrelevant footnote.

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