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Steelers All 90: Chandon Sullivan Keeps Chemistry with Patrick Peterson

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Pittsburgh Steelers Chandon Sullivan
Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Chandon Sullivan at OTAs, May 25, 2023. -- Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

The Pittsburgh Steelers spent this offseason trying to retool multiple different position groups with one being the cornerbacks. In an effort to replace a couple of key departures, the Steelers signed a pair of former Vikings, Patrick Peterson and Chandon Sullivan.

Sullivan is excited to come to Pittsburgh with a former teammate and said that Peterson is like a brother and mentor to him.

“It’s kind of cool,” Sullivan said. “Another year of Pat Pete. He’s like an older brother to me. We hang out outside of football. He’s like kind of a mentor. So, I’m excited to be here and be around guys like Levi [Wallace.]”

Sullivan joined the Vikings in 2022 and only played in one season with the team and Peterson but said that the biggest thing that he learned from the veteran Peterson is consistency, on and off of the field.

“Just try to be as consistent as you can and learn ways to continue to take care of your body off the field,” said Sullivan. “He’s in year 13, I believe, so I just want to know the secrets of how you can stay in this game and compete at such hard positions. Corner and slot, those are hard positions.”

While the coaches know what Peterson brings to the table, Sullivan is a bit of a question mark. Presumably, he is going to compete for the starting slot cornerback position after last year’s starter Arthur Maulet was cut by the team this offseason. Last season in Minnesota and for the majority of his career, Sullivan lined up as the slot cornerback as he recorded 830 of his 944 defensive snaps in 2022 at the position.

Sullivan is expected to compete with younger guys such as Duke Dawson and James Pierre for playing time at the slot cornerback position. Sullivan is entering year six and has the starting experience to help his resume but a player such as Pierre holds seniority over him for being the Steelers’ longest-tenured cornerback on the roster.

The Steelers also drafted two cornerbacks in addition to the two they signed so with a crowded position room, Sullivan will need to impress the coaches in order to stick around long-term.

It has been noted that to start OTAs and mandatory minicamp, Sullivan received first-team reps at both the slot and the nickel position. This means that the competition for the roster spot should heat up through training camp and the preseason.

34 • Chandon Sullivan, Cornerback, Georgia State
5-foot-11, 189 pounds, 26 years old, 6th Season

Acquired: The Steelers signed Sullivan to a one-year contract on April 29, 2023, after his contract with the Minnesota Vikings expired.

Last seasonFollowing three years in Green Bay, Sullivan stayed in the NFC North and signed a one-year deal with the Vikings. In his lone season as a member of the Vikings, Sullivan played all 17 regular season games and started 10 of them. He played a career-high 944 defensive snaps and finished the season with 60 combined tackles and allowed just one touchdown in coverage.

Steelers CB Chandon Sullivan Minnesota Vikings

Minnesota Vikings cornerback Chandon Sullivan (39) walks off the field after an NFL football game against the Chicago Bears, Sunday, Jan. 8, 2023, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Kamil Krzaczynski)

CareerFollowing his successful career at Georgia State, Sullivan went undrafted and signed with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2018. Sullivan failed to make the team’s initial 53-man roster but was promoted from the practice squad midseason. In total, Sullivan played in five games and recorded one start. In his lone start, he recorded three tackles and one pass defended. He made seven tackles in 89 defensive snaps as a rookie. The Eagles waived Sullivan following the season.

In 2019, Sullivan signed with the Green Bay Packers and made the team out of training camp. He recorded his first professional interception in Week 5 against Dak Prescott and the Dallas Cowboys. Sullivan finished his first year in Green Bay with 30 tackles, one interception, and one forced fumble.

Prior to the 2020 season, the Packers retained Sullivan as an exclusive right free agent. His role with the team became more prominent as he played double the defensive snaps than in 2019. On 729 defensive snaps, Sullivan made 41 combined tackles and one interception while allowing just two touchdowns in coverage.

His third year in Green Bay went about the same as his snaps increased again. He finished the year with three interceptions and 31 tackles. Following the season, Sullivan signed a one-year contract with the Vikings.

Year Team GP GS Snaps Tackles TDs Allowed Interceptions PFF Rating
2018 PHI 5 1 89 7 0 0 33.3
2019 GB 16 0 35o 30 0 1 73.1
2020 GB 16 10 729 41 2 1 62.2
2021 GB 17 10 826 31 3 3 55.0
2022 MIN 17 10 944 60 1 0 55.8

CollegeAfter a historic high school career at Winder-Barrow, Sullivan committed to Georgia State University. He immediately contributed as a true freshman as he played in 12 games and started the final eight. Sullivan snagged his first collegiate interception against Clemson in 2014.

In 2015, Sullivan remained as a starter in the secondary and eventually recorded the first pick-six in school history. As a sophomore, he finished with 50 combined tackles, two interceptions, and eight pass breakups. After the season, he was named a honorable mention All-Sun Belt.

As a junior, Sullivan kept up his strong play and finished the year with 43 tackles and four pass breakups. He also finished with a career-high three interceptions in 2016.

In 2017, Sullivan totaled 46 combined tackles, one interception, and five pass breakups. After the season, Sullivan earned his third straight all-conference honor as he was named third-team All-Sun Belt. He was the first Georgia State player to be invited to the Senior Bowl.

In total, Sullivan appeared in 49 career games with 44 career starts for Georgia State. He finished as the school’s all-time leader in interceptions with seven and passes defended (interceptions plus PBUs) with 25.

Year TKLs INTs PBUs
2014 43 1 1
2015 50 2 8
2016 43 3 4
2017 46 1 5

Salary cap and future: Sullivan is in Pittsburgh on a one-year contract that will pay him $1.09 million in 2023 which will be his cap hit against the Steelers cap this season. His contract contains a salary of $1.08 million and a bonus of $152,500. He will become an unrestricted free agent following this season.

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