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Steelers CB Named One of NFL’s Best Practice Squad Players



Steelers CB Luq Barcoo
Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Luq Barcoo at OTAs, May 31, 2023. -- Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

The practice squad is one of the more evolving things in the modern NFL. Nowadays, guys get called up and added for more than just development and scout team work. It’s about getting ready to play at some point, and it’s aided the Steelers this season in multiple areas.

So, being named one of the NFL’s best practice squad players might mean more now. CBS Sports listed some of the NFL’s best practice squad players, and Steelers cornerback Luq Barcoo was in those rankings as the seventh-best player on a practice squad.

“I fell in love with Barcoo’s film watching him intercept nine passes (!) in 2019 at San Diego State,” Chris Trapasso of CBS Sports wrote. “And while that probably was somewhat of an outlier season, it spoke to Barcoo’s innate ball-hawking talent. He too has beaten the odds — undrafted in the COVID year of 2020 but has been on six teams in four seasons and even spent the early stages of 2023 in the XFL with the San Antonio franchise. Unsurprisingly, he led the XFL with 11 pass breakups.”

Barcoo signed with the Steelers this May after a productive spring with the San Antonio Brahmas of the XFL. He played exclusively outside cornerback with the Steelers, battling with incumbent James Pierre and others to be the fourth outside corner on the regular roster.

He played in all three preseason games but on defense in just two, earning 42 snaps between the opener against the Buffalo Bills and the finale versus the Atlanta Falcons. He was given a 63.6 grade by PFF for his preseason. He did not record any official statistics over the three games.

Barcoo signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars as an undrafted free agent out of San Diego State in 2020.

He spent his entire rookie season on the Jags’ active roster, playing in three games and making one start. He had 10 tackles, one for a loss, and defended one pass.