The Pittsburgh Steelers’ 2020 NFL Draft class was small, one of the smallest in the league. Only six players were selected throughout the three day process, and the Steelers’ top pick, Notre Dame wide receiver Chase Claypool, has been turning heads in the short amount of time he has been in the 412 area code.
Tuesday, veteran cornerback Joe Haden had his turn with the local media, via Zoom call, and he was throwing around massive amounts of praise for the young, but not diminuitive, rookie reciever.
According to Haden, he has “all the attributes to be a baller.” This per Teresa Varley of Steelers.com:
Joe Haden likes what he sees from @ChaseClaypool so far. He said he has 'all the attributes to be a baller.'— Teresa Varley (@Teresa_Varley) August 18, 2020
So what is it which separates Claypool from other rookie receivers who have come in, and out, of the organization? According to Haden it is Claypool’s combination of size, speed and intelligence.
“His work ethic shows that he wants to be great. He doesn’t do too much talking. He just gets after it.”
Joe Haden says he's impressed by rookie WR Chase Claypool's size and speed and ability to learn.— Brooke Pryor (@bepryor) August 18, 2020
"His worth ethic shows that he wants to be great. He doesn't do too much talking. He just gets after it. ... he has all the physical attributes to be a baller."
Monday, Haden took to Twitter and quote tweeted a video of Claypool bringing in a Ben Roethlisberger pass in the end zone at Heinz Field. Haden called his shot for Claypool’s future with the team, and in the league.
He’s going to be a PROBLEM! You heard it first from me! https://t.co/7mzTAeiy7J— Joe Haden (@joehaden23) August 17, 2020
What was interested, and clarified on Tuesday, was how Haden wasn’t even talking about the video which he chose on social media. In fact, he says Claypool has made a couple of plays on him like that so far in camp. This per Teresa Varley:
Joe Haden said @ChaseClaypool has had a couple of plays on him this camp. He said he is a big body, deep threat with soft hands who can jump up and get it. He said as long as he can stay healthy he thinks he is going to be a problem.— Teresa Varley (@Teresa_Varley) August 18, 2020
Haden cites Claypool’s size, speed, hands and athleticism as pillars which he can build a tremendous professional career on. The caveat being if the youngster can stay healthy.
Joe Haden is a team player. Always has been, always will be. If you line up with Haden, you have someone who will always have your back. Fans shouldn’t be shocked to see Haden praising the young wide receiver, but in the short amount of time Haden has been in Pittsburgh you know he also doesn’t simply walk around talking up all of his teammates.
Especially opposing wide receivers.
Haden has been in the league a long time, and in this time he certainly is someone who can spot talent. And if he is going to be able to spot talent at a specific position, the one he is charged with covering on a daily basis would fall into that category.
According to Haden, the future is bright for Claypool, and the Steelers fan base is excited to see what they prized draft pick can do when the games officially start in just a few short weeks.
Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black-and-gold as they continue to roll through their 2020 Training Camp.