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2024 NFL Draft

Troy Fautanu, Steelers Brush Off Injury Concerns That May Have Led to Draft Slide



Pittsburgh Steelers OT Troy Fautanu
Troy Fautanu, Washington Athletics

PITTSBURGH — New Pittsburgh Steelers offensive tackle Troy Fautanu said that the knee issue that may have caused him to take a slide down the draft board to Pittsburgh at No. 20 is no longer a problem.

Some teams flagged Fautanu for medical reasons thanks to an old knee injury, he said on Thursday. Steelers general manager Omar Khan said it wasn’t an issue for his team.

“We wouldn’t select him if we weren’t comfortable with it,” Khan said. “I can’t speak for some of the stuff that’s put out there and what’s true and what’s not, what other people were saying. But we were comfortable.”

Fautanu said the injury that was flagged was an older one that hasn’t bothered him in some time.

“That knee thing hasn’t bothered me in years,” he said. “If you come out playing football for years and years and you don’t get injured, you’re like a pony. I understand the physicality that I do play with. Sometimes, things are going to happen like that. But that doesn’t stop me from showing up to work every day and playing the way that I do play.”

He didn’t miss a game once he worked his way into the starting lineup at Washington, playing all 13 games in 2022 and 15 games in 2023.

Fautanu was the No. 7 player on our Top 100 big board and Steelers Now projected him to go No. 16 to the Seattle Seahawks. His NFL Mock Draft Database average also had him going to Seattle.

The Steelers have been a team that has not hesitated to take chances on players with medical concerns. They stopped tight end Darnell Washington’s slide down the draft board last April and did the same with wide receiver George Pickens in 2022.

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