Player: Jordan Berry
School: Eastern Kentucky
Overview: Jordan Berry has a chance to do something unheard of for a Mike Tomlin led Steelers club: be the Steelers punter two years in a row.
The revolving door for the Steelers speaks to the perceived lack of value you get from punters, and the inability of anyone to separate themselves from the pack with a good season. Of course, if you only get one chance to prove yourself it gets hard to show how much you've Improved, but I digress.
Berry had a fine year punting for the Steelers in 2015. He finished near the bottom of the league in yards per punt, but thanks to the dominant Steelers offense he didn't attempt as many punts as some of the men ahead of him which skews his stats. As this article by Mike Frazer notes, Berry makes up for his lack of distance with great situational punting, excelling at placing the ball inside the 20-yard line. Berry had a rough game against Denver in the divisional round of the AFC Playoffs, something that will stick in the mind of most Steelers fans given how close that game was. However, if you go back and look on a case by case basis, something Joe Kuzma did earlier this week, the vast majority of his punts were very good.
In his first year, Berry's main issues seemed to be consistency, something that just about every first year NFL player struggles with regardless of the position they play. Still, it might be a mistake for the Steelers to give up on someone that can help out a young defense by flipping the field for them. The good news for Berry is that the competition he has, in former Duke player Will Monday, has never punted in the NFL before and his draft profile noted he probably needs a year before he becomes a full-time punter. We'll see how things shake out in the preseason. but I think Berry has best chance in years to be the Steelers punter two years in a row.
High turnover rate at the position
Chances of Making the team: 50%