The Pittsburgh Steelers defense is one of the best units across the entire NFL. But like any team, they still have their warts. Could these players exceed expectations? Certainly. But could they become straight-up liabilities that cripple one of the best defenses in the league? Potentially. Much like the past three days, we will look at the four players that could be a weak spot on this team (Read the others below). On a side note, I will only be taking into consideration players that will have a fairly big role on defense and not depth players.
Below are some of the players that could hold the Steelers back from reaching their true potential.
Terrell Edmunds has caught the ire of Steelers fans for a few years now. A lot of that hate started the moment the Steelers reached on him in the first round of the 2018 draft. Although he has shown some moments of brilliance blanketing tight ends for most of the 2020 season, coverage gaffs have been a theme of Edmunds young career and can rear its ugly head every now and then. Edmunds needs to continue his growth, not just to help the team but to keep himself in the NFL.
Sutton is being asked to start out-wide at corner for the first time in his career. With anyone taking over a brand new spot for the first time, it will come with question marks and it will directly relate to the developmental skills of the Steelers coaching staff. Here in year five, Sutton finally gets his chance to be the guy. Will he rise to the occasion or join the long list of failed Steelers cornerback draft picks? Only time will tell, but the opposition will test Sutton early and often to find out.
Robert Spillane had two of the biggest splash plays of the Steelers 2020 season. He stuffed Derek Henry at the goal line, and turned a Lamar Jackson interception into 6 points. He has the skills to be a guy on the Steelers defense, but after coming back from a knee injury in the 2020 playoffs he struggled. How much of that was related to the injury is something we will find out quickly. But without the safety blanket of Vince Williams, Spillane has to prove to be the guy right away and never look like how he did against the Browns ever again.
Much like Cam Sutton, James Pierre will see a massive uptick in playing time for the Pittsburgh Steelers. He has a shot at passing Sutton as the starting corner, and he could be the guy to play in sub packages. To be fair, Pierre has looked good (very good) every time he has stepped on the field and has been one of the more notable players at training camp. The stars suggest Pierre will be a diamond the Steelers pulled from the mud of undrafted free agency. Can he be one of those rags to riches players like Malcolm Butler and Willie Parker before him? Or will he fade into obscurity like 99% of undrafted players?
But what do you think? Who will be the Steelers weakest link on defense in 2021? Hit up the poll below and put your thoughts down in the comments!
Who will be the Steelers worst defensive player in 2021?
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