There are ups and downs in the life of an NFL player, and Pittsburgh Steelers' cornerback and special teams ace, Antwon Blake, is experiencing this the hard way.
Blake was the talk of the town after the draft when he was verbally boasted by Steelers' defensive coaches as a reason the team didn't go after a high profile cornerback in the first round of the draft. He had the look of a potential starter at OTAs, but as Mike Tomlin always alludes to "football in shorts" - it means very little.
The success Blake saw during OTAs didn't last long, as Jim Wexell of SteelCityInsider reports while watching minicamp:
One of my spring surprises, No. 4 CB Antwon Blake, looked short and slow yesterday. No doubt success is fleeting at that position.— James C Wexell (@jimwexell) June 19, 2014
If there are two things you don't want at the cornerback position, is someone that is small and slow.
Now, this very would could be chalked up to a bad day at the office, or even a few bad days at the office. That doesn't mean that the book should be shut on Blake as a possible contributor on this team outside of special teams. Blake was not going to start on this team unless injury put him in such a position, but he could still be considered a reliable backup if called upon.
All of the talk the cornerback received during OTAs could have boosted his ego a bit too much, but it is better for a player to get a slice of humble pie in the spring rather than the fall. Here is to hoping Blake learns from the rough camp and improves before training camp.