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Promising Steelers Rookie Set to Make NFL Debut



Steelers CB Darius Rush Depth Chart
Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Darius Rush at practice on Oct. 18, 2023. -- Alan Saunders / Steelers Now

PITTSBURGH — Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Darius Rush will make his NFL debut on Sunday during his team’s Week 8 home game against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Rush will take the place of Levi Wallace in the active roster. Wallace will miss the game with a foot injury.

Rush is expected to play mostly on special teams, taking the usual role of James Pierre, while Pierre climbs the depth chart to be the backup outside cornerback and likely Dime defender.

A fifth-round pick out of South Carolina, Rush was cut by the Indianapolis Colts after training camp and caught on with the Kansas City Chiefs, where he was on the practice squad until the Steelers came calling. A healthy scratch in his first week with Pittsburgh, he’s getting his first shot on an NFL field on Sunday.

“It’s took a long week of preparation to get here, and getting into the playbook since I’ve been here and getting an opportunity when I have the opportunity to take those reps, I have to make sure I know what I’m doing.” Rush said. “So, that takes a lot of preparation and leaning on the vet guys to get into those spots, along with Coach (Grady) Brown helping me out along the way. It’s allowed me to learn the playbook, and it’s my responsibility to play in those situations and execute.”

Unless there’s an injury ahead of him, Rush will likely only play on special teams, but he knows that’s the key to him getting more opportunities.

“I have to meet expectations,” Rush said. “That’s the standard I’m supposed to play at. It’s the standard I’m going to play at every time I’m between the white lines. If they feel I wasn’t prepared, they wouldn’t have me out here. They showed confidence in me, so I have to show confidence in myself. It’s up to me to go out there and make plays and execute at a high level.”