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Terrell Edmunds named as a defensive back ready to break out for the Steelers in 2019

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Could the second year safety be due for a breakout in 2019?

NFL: Pittsburgh Steelers-Minicamp Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

When the Pittsburgh Steelers selected Terrell Edmunds in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft, there was a lot of skepticism across the board. Fans were upset, and they followed the media’s lead when they thought Edmunds was no better than a Day 2 draft prospect.

Either way, the Steelers pulled the trigger on the Virginia Tech safety, and got to see plenty of him in 2019 as he started the entire season alongside Sean Davis in the Steelers’ secondary.

There were good times, and some bad times throughout the season. Such is life for a rookie in the NFL. But what if I told you at least one media member is starting to see Edmunds in a different light. That writer would be none other than NFL.com’s Gil Brandt.

In a recent article, Brandt listed his Top 10 defensive backs set to break out in 2019, and Edmunds came in at No. 7 on the list. You can check out the article HERE, but here is what he said about Edmunds entering his sophomore season:

Terrell Edmunds, S, Pittsburgh Steelers

Drafted: Round 1, No. 28 overall, in 2018.

Edmunds was projected by most people to be a second-round pick, but the Steelers jumped up and snagged the safety -- and he proceeded to play 1,189 snaps (including special teams), which was more than any other rookie in 2018, while proving he warranted the use of that first-round choice. The brother of fellow first-round pick Tremaine Edmunds, Terrell stepped in for injured safety Morgan Burnett early in the year and never looked back, collecting the second-most tackles on the team (78). That said, Edmunds finished the year with just one interception and zero forced fumbles. The hope is that both Edmunds and defensive back Sean Davis can generate more impact plays under the tutelage of new staffer Teryl Austin, the former Lions and Bengals defensive coordinator.

Putting the majority of the pressure newly hired Austin might be a little much, but the fact Edmunds now has a full season of playing alongside Davis might be the biggest factor in Edmunds potentially breaking out this season.

When you re-watch the 2018 season, you often see Edmunds just a beat behind the play. Again, this is normal for a rookie trying to get acclimated, but when you have a rookie who is starting from Day 1, the learning curve can be even more drastic. If Edmunds can anticipate more in 2019, rather than simply reacting to what he sees, you should see him around the ball more — and that is exactly what the Steelers hope to see in 2019.