The Pittsburgh Steelers select Artie Burns 25th overall to breathe life into secondary
Well Steelers fans, you finally got your wish. For the first time since the Steelers picked Chad Scott in 1997, Pittsburgh selected a corner in the first round. Artie Burns out of Miami is an extremely athletic corner who can contribute to the Steelers’ wounded secondary.
Missing retired favorites Troy Polamalu and Ike Taylor, the Steelers defense gave up 272 pass yards per game (30th in NFL). Fans have been clamoring for a corner for quite some time, and it was only a matter of time. Burns will either compete with Ross Cockrell on the outside, or Senquez Golson at the nickel. Although with his raw play, he may sit for a year before seeing significant play time.
On the field, Burns shows quick reflexes to break on balls and break up passes. In his junior year, Burns nabbed six interceptions and 5 passes defended. He also has the build of a prototypical corner, at six-feet tall and 195 lbs, with long lanky arms and big hands. He also plays with swagger and doesn’t back down from a challenge.
What Burns is missing is technique. He has a poor backpedal where he comes out of his stance too early, and gets grabby when running with receivers. He got away with it in college, but not sure how well that’ll fly in the NFL. He also doesn’t get off blocks with urgency, preferring to let runners get to him before making his move.
Either way, Steelers fans will have to be happy to have a premiere corner to coach up and play on Sundays.