Pittsburgh Steelers defensive end Cam Heyward joined The Jim Rome Show on Monday and shared his thoughts on the team drafting Kenny Pickett and his brother Connor.
Already having some familiarity with Pickett given their proximity over his college career, Heyward praised the rookie’s leadership and athleticism.
“Man, I’m excited,” Heyward said. “I got to watch Kenny these past couple years. And, I haven’t gotten a chance to really interact with him, but I can see the type of leader he is. He’s got some wheels. Hits people with the fake slide. I don’t know if you want to keep doing that at the next level, but he’s got a great arm and a good kid. We’ve got to embrace him and bring him into the Steeler life.”
Heyward does not believe Pickett will have any trouble understanding and upholding the tradition of the franchise he is stepping into.
“As newer guys come in, and I know we haven’t had a quarterback change in in so long, but there’s a legacy you have to uphold,” he said. “There’s a tradition and a history you have to respect. And I know Kenny knows that. But that’s for every draft pick, that’s for every player, that’s for every coach.”
Heyward also shared how he ultimately found out that his brother had been drafted by the Steelers.
“He stormed off because he was a little bit upset, and he went into a room, and I went in to check after things,” Heyward recounted. “His phone rang and I was like ‘who is it?’ And he wouldn’t tell me. And he’s talking to a coach, find out it was Coach (Tomlin). But he kept walking away from me and I didn’t know who it was.”
While Connor was being coy, it was actually Mike Tomlin who informed the elder Heyward that the brothers would now be teammates.
So then he got off the phone and then Coach T called me and we were drafting him,” Heyward said. “I mean he was like ‘we got him bro.’ I was like ‘wow, my brother’s really been holding onto this a little too long.’”