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2023 NFL Draft

Steelers Draft Legacy CB Joey Porter Jr. in 2nd Round



Steelers 2023 NFL Draft Joey Porter Jr.

The Pittsburgh Steelers have selected Penn State cornerback Joey Porter Jr. with the 32nd overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.

Porter (6-foot-2, 194 pounds),  was one of 17 prospects who attended the first round of the draft in person on Thursday, but he was one of a handful of players that were surprisingly still on the board for the Steelers with the first pick of the second round. 

His father, Joey Porter Sr., had a 13-year career in the league, spending eight seasons with the Steelers, three with the Dolphins and two more with the Cardinals. The elder Porter’s best years in the NFL came with Pittsburgh, where he was selected to four Pro Bowls, made first-team All-Pro in 2002 and helped the Steelers to a Super Bowl win in the 2005 season. 

Porter was an All-American and first-team All-Big Ten player in 2022, recording 27 tackles, 11 pass breakups, a quarterback hurry, and a fumble recovery in Penn State’s win over Purdue on opening night. Now, he’s the first Penn State defensive back in school history to go in the first round. 

Porter’s work over four seasons at Penn State impressed his position coach, Terry Smith.

“He’s done a tremendous job,” Smith said in October. “He’s worked his tail off. This guy’s constantly in the weight room, out on the field. In the meeting room. Everything that he’s getting, he’s absolutely worked hard and deserved to get.”

“He’s reaping the rewards of arguably one of the better corners to ever play here at Penn State,” Smith said.

The Steelers scouted Porter extensively, bringing him to the South Side for a pre-draft visit after Omar Khan and Mike Tomlin missed his Penn State pro day while at the 2023 NFL Annual Meetings.

Porter is the second Penn State player in the last three seasons to be drafted by the Steelers in the second round, joining 2021 second-round pick, tight end Pat Freiermuth.

The pick originally belonged to the Chicago Bears. The Steelers acquired the pick in exchange for wide receiver Chase Claypool in the middle of the 2022 season. The pick seemed that it would be much later in the second round. But the Bears lost every single game the rest of the way, giving the Steelers the top choice in the second round. The Steelers have another pick in the second round, their pick at No. 49.

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