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It’s Time to Put Joey Porter Jr. in the DROY Race. Here’s Why



Steelers CB Joey Porter Jr.
Steelers CB Joey Porter Jr. against the Cleveland Browns, Nov. 19, 2023 - Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

CINCINNATI — Joey Porter Jr. discussed facing Bengals star receiver Ja’Marr Chase on Friday. He never flinched. Instead, he seemed genuinely excited about the challenge of meeting one of the game’s best players. It was the ultimate test for him, as Chase is the best player he has faced on the schedule thus far. Not only did Porter do a great job of slowing Chase down, but he definitively won the matchup.

Joey Porter Jr., yet again, stood on his head against a great receiver in Ja’Marr Chase and took shadowing responsibility. He did his job well. Chase flexed on him after a catch down the sideline, but Porter was in great coverage. Porter knows they will see each other again; it’s a rivalry in the making.

“He did that little flex,” Porter said, “and I’m like, ‘All right, when I make my play I’m gonna do the same flex on him.’ But when I made my play I forgot to do it. So that just made me want to make another play. But that’s cool. I’m gonna see him again.”

Most of Chase’s production came on two tipped passes that Porter could not do anything about. While on Chase, Porter allowed 36 yards on two receptions. It was another great day for him, but he could not believe those tipped passes happened.

Steelers CB Joey Porter Jr.

Steelers CB Joey Porter Jr. comes out of the tunnel against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Oct. 29, 2023 – Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

“Yeah, how did he catch those? He’s catching tipped passes I don’t even think wide receivers would go for. It was cool, though. It was good,” Porter said

That continues a trend where Porter has made play after play. He is proving to be a find and a half for Khan and the scouting staff. The Defensive Rookie of the Year Award will likely go to Jalen Carter. He deserves it. But Porter has to be in the conversation along with Carter and Devon Witherspoon of the Seahawks. He has played that well. Porter is still grabby sometimes, but his footwork and hand usage are coming a long way. That’s a big-time hit for Pittsburgh.