The Pittsburgh Steelers locked up the third of their draft picks, signing sixth-round draft pick Antoine Brooks Jr. With the COVID-19 restrictions, NFL teams have not had access to players to complete physical exams. Many teams, including the Steelers, held off on signing their draft picks because of it. But with rookies reporting this week, the time has come to get their draft picks under contract.
Antoine Brooks Jr. joins a long list of intriguing 6th round picks made by the Pittsburgh Steelers over Mike Tomlin’s tenure as head coach. Joining players like Ulysees Gilbert III, Anthony Chickillo, Daniel McCullers, Vince Williams, Jonathan Dwyer, Ryan Mundy, and perhaps most famously, Colin Holba. Oh, yeah, don’t forget Antonio Brown either.
Antoine Brooks Jr. played a combination of linebacker, safety and cornerback in college, and was an impact player for the Maryland Terrapins. In 2019 he recorded 87 tackles, 8.5 for a loss, an interception and 5 passes defended. While he shows a lot of ability on film, Brooks Jr. may struggle to find a position in the Steelers defense early as he doesn’t have the size to play linebacker, the speed to play cornerback, and as a safety struggled in deep zone defense. Antoine Brooks Jr. will need to make his mark initially on special teams, something he was successful at in college.
Brooks now joins former Maryland Terrapin teammate Anthony McFarland Jr. along with third-round selection Alex Highsmith who have both also put pen to paper in regards to their rookie contracts.
Stay tuned to Behind the Steel Curtain as remainder of the Steelers draft picks look to be signed fairly soon.