2023 was the first Pittsburgh Steelers rookie class built by general manager Omar Khan, As is the norm in the NFL, rookies get very little time to get acclimated before being thrust into a significant role but the Steelers were able to handle their rookie class just right. Here are our grades for the Steelers rookies.
OT Broderick Jones
The Steelers traded up to draft Broderick Jones because they knew how badly the position needed an upgrade and how dominant Jones could be. When the Steelers benched Chuks Okorafor and plugged Jones into the starting lineup, the right side of the offensive line completely changed. Jones ended up starting 11 games.
CB Joey Porter Jr.
The son of Steelers legend Joey Porter was as advertised as one of the team’s two second-round picks. The Steelers coaching staff eased Porter into the lineup and finished the season with 11 starts. He was more than willing to shadow the opposing team’s top receiver and did not look at all like a rookie.
DL Keeanu Benton
If you just looked at the Box scores, you might not be overly impressed with Keannu Benton’s rookie campaign. But after working his way into the rotation, Benton’s ability to create havoc in the backfield became clear and he ended up starting nine games.
TE Darnell Washington
LB Nick Herbig
Nick Herbig had a handful of moments that made you wonder if he could be one of the next great Steelers pass rushers. Herbig didn’t start in 2023 but was part of the rotation and did finish with three sacks, two forced fumbles and looks poised for an expanded role next season.
DB Cory Trice Jr.
Unfortunately, Cory Trice was placed on IR in training camp and we didn’t get to see if he was really the bargain he appeared as a seventh-round pick.
OL Spencer Anderson
Spencer Anderson looked good in preseason but the cards never fell to get him on the field much during the season.