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calmkiller
04-26-2019, 10:32 PM
CB Justin Lane 6-2 192. Another pre draft official visitor.

spyboots
04-26-2019, 10:33 PM
i like it!

brothervad
04-26-2019, 10:33 PM
So did they redeem themselves?

SteelBucks
04-26-2019, 10:33 PM
This should calm people down.

Steel Maniac
04-26-2019, 10:34 PM
Good pick.

fordfixer
04-26-2019, 10:34 PM
Not on this board

Ghost
04-26-2019, 10:34 PM
Good size. A player. Like it.

Terrapin
04-26-2019, 10:35 PM
This was a nice pick. To answer someone, no, not redeemed after the Dri Archer 2.0 pick

Steel Maniac
04-26-2019, 10:36 PM
Good size. A player. Like it.

Love his size; and he gets physical

spyboots
04-26-2019, 10:37 PM
nm. wrong thread, sorry

fordfixer
04-26-2019, 10:37 PM
A+ pick .....

Terrapin
04-26-2019, 10:39 PM
Hayden, Edmunds, Nelson, this guy, Sutton, Davis, etc. No excuses for not having at least a decent secondary.

That 2015 draft absolutely killed us, and is still killing us

fordfixer
04-26-2019, 10:41 PM
Justin Layne
Defensive Back
6-3, 185
Cleveland, Ohio

Three-year letterwinner played in 34 career games, including 26 starts at cornerback (five in 2016, nine in 2017, 12 in 2018) . . . also saw brief time at wide receiver in 2016 and 2018 . . . had 130 career tackles, including 4.5 tackles for loss (15 yards) and a half sack (3 yards) . . . had 24 career pass break-ups and three interceptions . . . began his Spartan career as a wide receiver before transitioning to cornerback midway through his first season in 2016, but saw action as wide receiver in two games in 2018 due to injuries on the offensive side of the ball . . . elected to forgo his senior season to enter the 2019 NFL Draft.

2018 SEASON (JUNIOR): First-team All-Big Ten selection by Pro Football Focus . . . second-team All-Big Ten choice by the media, coaches, Associated Press, Athlon Sports and Phil Steele . . . recipient of MSU's most outstanding underclass back award on defense . . . recorded a career-high 15 pass break-ups, tied for eighth most in an MSU single-season . . . the 15 pass break-ups also tied for first in the Big Ten and 10th in the FBS . . . his 16 passes defended also ranked tied for first in the Big Ten (15 PBUs, one interception) . . . ranked fifth on the team with a career-high 72 tackles, including 2.5 for losses . . . played 833 snaps in 12 games . . . had at least one pass break-up in eight of 12 games . . . had six tackles and two PBUs vs. Rutgers . . . registered one tackle and one pass break-up at Nebraska . . . tied career-high with 10 tackles against Ohio State, also tying career-high with 1.5 tackles for loss and adding his first half sack, as well as additionally matching his career-high with four pass break-ups; named to Pro Football Focus Big Ten Team of the Week for his performance against the Buckeyes . . . played a total of 80 snaps vs. Purdue, playing both cornerback and wide receiver; tallied seven tackles to go with career-best four pass break-ups in 64 snaps on defense, and had one catch for 11 yards while playing 16 snaps on offense . . . was named to the Pro Football Focus Big Ten Team of the Week for his performance against the Boilermakers . . . posted five stops in Michigan game, as well as seeing some time at wide receiver, being thrown to twice, but incomplete both times . . . started at No. 8 Penn State and posted seven tackles and one pass break-up, logging 11 production points, all in playing all 64 defensive snaps . . . started Northwestern game and posted team-high tying eight stops with one tackle for loss, for first TFL of the season . . . notched team-best nine tackles against Central Michigan, adding interception and pass break-up . . . started game at Indiana at cornerback, posting seven stops . . . started Arizona State game at cornerback, tallying six stops and one pass break-up . . . started at cornerback against Utah State, logging five tackles and one pass break-up.

2017 SEASON (SOPHOMORE): Earned honorable mention All-Big Ten by both the coaches and media . . . recorded 40 tackles in 13 games with nine starts . . . ranked second on the team with eight pass break-ups . . . recorded three stops against No. 18 Washington State in the Holiday Bowl . . . tallied five tackles to go with career-high three pass break-ups against Maryland to total 18 production points, leading the defensive backs unit and ranking tied for third on the defense . . . made acrobatic, one-handed interception in end zone at No. 11 Ohio State, adding three tackles and two pass break-ups, finishing with 10 production points . . . registered two tackles and two pass break-ups in win over No. 7 Penn State . . . had career-high 10 tackles against Indiana, doubling previous high, adding one pass break-up, finishing with career-high 22 production points, which led defensive backs and ranked third on defense . . . started against No. 7 Michigan and had five tackles, adding first forced fumble of career . . . posted five tackles against Notre Dame, including half a tackle for loss.

2016 SEASON (FRESHMAN): Played in nine games (one at wide receiver, eight at cornerback) and started five of last seven contests to earn his first letter . . . converted positions from wide receiver to cornerback in the fifth game of the season . . . honorable mention choice to the BTN.com All-Freshman Team . . . had 18 tackles, including 1.5 for losses (7 yards), with one interception . . . started at field cornerback at No. 8 Penn State and tallied three stops and one pass break-up . . . was starting field cornerback against No. 2 Ohio State and logged two tackles . . . started vs. Rutgers and registered three tackles, including 1.5 tackles for loss (7 yards) . . . tallied two tackles against No. 2 Michigan . . . logged season-high four tackles at Maryland . . . made first career start vs. Northwestern and had a smashing debut; snared an interception and returned it for a 43-yard touchdown, added three tackles, and finished second on the defense with 18 production points against the Wildcats . . . made his first appearance at cornerback vs. BYU (14 snaps) and also saw action on special teams . . . made his Spartan debut as a wideout at Indiana.

HIGH SCHOOL AND PERSONAL DATA: Rated among the nation's top prospects by PrepStar (No. 169), 247Sports.com (No. 196) and Rivals.com (No. 210) . . . PrepStar All-American . . . ranked among the country's top wide receivers by PrepStar (No. 31), 247Sports.com (No. 39), ESPN.com (No. 42) and Rivals.com (No. 47) . . . listed among the Midwest's top prospects by ESPN.com (No. 23) . . . rated among Ohio's top seniors by Rivals.com (No. 7), 247Sports.com (No. 9) and ESPN.com (No. 11) . . . three-year starter for Coach Joe Schaefer at Benedictine High School in Cleveland, Ohio . . . named to The Associated Press Division III All-Ohio first team as a senior . . . AP Northeast Lakes All-District first-team selection . . . two-time Cleveland.com All-Star (2014: defensive back; 2015: wide receiver) . . . had a career-best 46 receptions for 790 yards (17.2 avg.) and 11 touchdowns in 2015 . . . also returned three punts for TDs as a senior . . . set a school single-game record with 12 catches for 187 yards and two scores in the regional final vs. Toledo Central Catholic . . . accounted for four TDs vs. Walsh Jesuit (three receptions for 126 yards and three TDs; also returned a punt 70 yards for a score) . . . caught 36 passes for a career-high 866 yards (24.1 avg.) and 12 TDs as a junior . . . recorded seven interceptions in 2014 . . . returned an interception 48 yards for a TD in the 2014 Division IV Championship Game vs. Kettering Alter . . . had 25 catches for 499 yards (20.0 avg.) and seven TDs as a sophomore . . . had 107 career receptions for 2,155 yards (20.1 avg.) and 30 TDs . . . four-year letterman for the Bengals' basketball team . . . also lettered in track and field . . . placed eighth in the long jump (22.5 feet) at the 2016 Ohio Division 1 state championships; also advanced to the state final in the 400 meters . . . son of Deondre Layne and Vanessa Easterling . . . born Jan. 12, 1998 . . . interdisciplinary studies in social science major.

hawaiiansteel
04-26-2019, 10:58 PM
Love his size; and he gets physical

can Layne learn to play 10 yards off the ball and tackle the catch though?

Rara
04-26-2019, 11:05 PM
I'm fine with this pick. Fills a need and a corner atleast 6'0". Hopefully he turns out to be a good one.

hawaiiansteel
04-26-2019, 11:17 PM
Bustin Layne

hawaiiansteel
04-26-2019, 11:44 PM
83. Steelers: Justin Layne, CB Michigan State

Analysis: After watching him on film, I’m a bit surprised Justin Layne lasted this long. The Steelers won’t complain. Layne is at his best in zone defense, but he has the length and athleticism to develop into a man corner.

GRADE: A-


https://ftw.usatoday.com/2019/04/2019-nfl-draft-grades-day-2

NorthCoast
04-26-2019, 11:47 PM
Clearly the media hasn't got the memo that Colbert and Tomlin suck at drafting past Rd 1...

Shawn
04-26-2019, 11:49 PM
Colbert and Tomlin may have just redeemed themselves. Justin is a solid DB. This guy is a technician with solid technique, and feel. You can see it in games. He isn't just a project that tests well. Check out the game tapes. He can play.

Buzz
04-26-2019, 11:54 PM
I like this pick.

NorthCoast
04-27-2019, 12:01 AM
Shades of Jalen Ramsey?!?!:

#6 Justin Layne (CB – Michigan State)
Most industry draft analysts have the top three cornerbacks as Greedy Williams, Byron Murphy and DeAndre Baker. They are all in different spots on every list but almost always represent the top tier. In my opinion, Layne belongs in that group. I’ve still got Murphy and Williams ahead of them, but not by a full round. Layne is a former wide receiver who is still learning the position but was extraordinary for the Spartans thanks to a rare combination of elite length and speed. In fact, the only corners to match that combo are all Pro Bowlers: Jalen Ramsey, Xavier Rhodes and Antonio Cromartie. I don’t need to tell you that he is in tremendous company. Don’t expect him to hit the ground running in the NFL so a corner-hungry team in contention like the Chiefs or Colts doesn’t make a ton of sense but he could sneak into the early second to a team like the Giants or Redskins. I’ve got him landing with Minnesota at pick #50, however, who won’t need him to start right away but have few holes to fill and can afford to let him grow before stepping in for Trae Waynes when he probably leaves in free agency next winter.

<span style="color:#ff8c00;"><em>
https://www.fantasypros.com/2019/04/2019-nfl-draft-sleepers/

NorthCoast
04-27-2019, 12:09 AM
.....
Michigan State cornerback Justin Layne is primed to be a top-50 selection in next month's NFL draft, but he's still not getting enough love nationally. We gotta change that.
Layne, at 6'2" and 192 pounds, has a ridiculous 80⅛" wingspan (https://247sports.com/college/michigan-state/Article/NFL-Draft-Michigan-State-players-weigh-in-at-NFL-Combine-129651117/). As scouts like to say, he can tie his shoe without bending over. Layne uses that length well, but he's also explosive and fast—just check his 4.5-second 40 time at that size and 134-inch broad jump for proof.......

Steel Maniac
04-27-2019, 01:14 AM
Comparing him to Ramsey?? Let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

dreegking
04-27-2019, 04:28 AM
LOL. Dri Archer couldn’t run routes. LOL. He was a gadget player drafted for return abilities. Don’t be silly.

dreegking
04-27-2019, 04:32 AM
Not a believer in this pick. Trying to be. I know he has upside. I don’t know. I’m not convinced. I know he is “value” but I don’t care about that stuff. I’m being biased I guess because I liked a Safety or two that were and are still available. But...looking forward to seeing what he can do. I’ll view this as an endorsement of the Steelers faith in Davis. Although I know I’m just lying to myself. As they have more depth at Corner than Safety. They must like him. Looking forward to what he can bring. But I still look forward to seeing Burns play in various packages and doing well. Ha. It’s odd how Lane can be lauded for 15 pass knock downs but Burns does the same as a pro and can’t catch a break from anyone. Here’s to hoping. And yes, I can be a believer fast. Cuz I was not that impressed with the more higher rated corner class this year at all. Anyone not them makes me happy.

lord_of_six_rings
04-27-2019, 08:03 AM
Pretty lukewarm for this pick but, I will say it's good value and has an upside- but when? However, all the homers or Colbert's relatives who lap up the FO line every chance....how do rectify this is 3rd rd 2.0 this year but in the CB position instead of QB.

On one hand, KC as the ultimate decision maker gives these rare media Q&A sessions where the one theme is we are fortunate to have a franchise QB. We don't sell off, auction off, etc - WE RELOAD. We are one of only a handful of teams w/ HOF QB play. That is the narrative KC sells the fans. I don't disagree. We are in a unique position. I accept it as most of us should. However, last year when we need D and LB's - he takes a "1st rd" graded QB? That 3rd rd pick could of been LB's Avery or Warner....there were LB's who would of helped or filled Shaziers spot. This year, with ALL media and steelers staff this (CB - Layne) is not a NFL starter now or soon. HE "oozes" potential something I heard DB coach Austin say.

But back to Colbert's narrative- there is a disconnect. And no one should just blindly accept this huge discrepancy. Wish some beat writers would kinda broach this BS we are being fed. In my opinion, the "potential" picks should be the later rounds 5,6,and 7. Because of our "unique" position KC reminds us of, I would really like the 1st 4 or 5 picks as players who could more than likely contribute in a big way. Just screaming for some consistency and common sense here

NorthCoast
04-27-2019, 09:18 AM
Pretty lukewarm for this pick but, I will say it's good value and has an upside- but when? However, all the homers or Colbert's relatives who lap up the FO line every chance....how do rectify this is 3rd rd 2.0 this year but in the CB position instead of QB.

On one hand, KC as the ultimate decision maker gives these rare media Q&A sessions where the one theme is we are fortunate to have a franchise QB. We don't sell off, auction off, etc - WE RELOAD. We are one of only a handful of teams w/ HOF QB play. That is the narrative KC sells the fans. I don't disagree. We are in a unique position. I accept it as most of us should. However, last year when we need D and LB's - he takes a "1st rd" graded QB? That 3rd rd pick could of been LB's Avery or Warner....there were LB's who would of helped or filled Shaziers spot. This year, with ALL media and steelers staff this (CB - Layne) is not a NFL starter now or soon. HE "oozes" potential something I heard DB coach Austin say.

But back to Colbert's narrative- there is a disconnect. And no one should just blindly accept this huge discrepancy. Wish some beat writers would kinda broach this BS we are being fed. In my opinion, the "potential" picks should be the later rounds 5,6,and 7. Because of our "unique" position KC reminds us of, I would really like the 1st 4 or 5 picks as players who could more than likely contribute in a big way. Just screaming for some consistency and common sense here

Every team's draft AV through the 2012- 2016 drafts. Steelers have a net positive, not so easy given where they end up drafting every year.

https://usatftw.files.wordpress.com/2017/04/draftgradesleague1.jpg?w=1000&h=513

flippy
04-27-2019, 09:48 AM
Im watching interview and Layne grew up a Browns fan. Ewwwwwww.....

hawaiiansteel
04-27-2019, 10:10 AM
Pittsburgh Steelers: Justin Layne, CB, Michigan State A+ Grade

Wow, I forgot Justin Layne was still available. Layne got some late first-round buzz at some point, but was expected to be chosen in the second frame. Layne is an excellent cornerback with terrific ball skills. He's an absolute steal for the Steelers, who needed someone like Layne to upgrade their poor secondary.


http://walterfootball.com/nfldraftgrades3.php

Steel Maniac
04-27-2019, 12:04 PM
Im watching interview and Layne grew up a Browns fan. Ewwwwwww.....

Double agent? Not a good feeling huh?

Steel Maniac
04-27-2019, 12:06 PM
Pittsburgh Steelers: Justin Layne, CB, Michigan State A+ Grade

Wow, I forgot Justin Layne was still available. Layne got some late first-round buzz at some point, but was expected to be chosen in the second frame. Layne is an excellent cornerback with terrific ball skills. He's an absolute steal for the Steelers, who needed someone like Layne to upgrade their poor secondary.


http://walterfootball.com/nfldraftgrades3.php

A corner with terrific ball skills ; I like that part. Basic requirement of all secondary players should be ballhawk skills.

Shawn
04-28-2019, 03:04 AM
Layne is going to push for a starter position early. Not saying he will get it but I expect to see a lot of him this season.

Steel Maniac
04-28-2019, 11:52 AM
Layne is going to push for a starter position early. Not saying he will get it but I expect to see a lot of him this season.

Pleeeeaaase push for a starter spot!! If he can beat out Nelson, so be it.

hawaiiansteel
04-28-2019, 05:13 PM
Pleeeeaaase push for a starter spot!! If he can beat out Nelson, so be it.

Nelson could then compete against Hilton for the starting slot corner job...

Steel Maniac
04-28-2019, 05:28 PM
I like it; competition everywhere. As good as I feel about Hilton, a little push on him to keep him focused is a good thing.

Moonie
04-28-2019, 06:09 PM
A corner with terrific ball skills ; I like that part. Basic requirement of all secondary players should be ballhawk skills.

I think "ball skills" are different than "ballhawk skills." This guy has 3 interceptions in his college career and 1 interception last year. He is no ballhawk.

I'd still like to see a video of him displaying "ball skills," if anyone knows of one. Everything I see on youtube has this guy getting thrown on, turned around and quite non-athletic looking - and those are supposed to be his highlights.

hawaiiansteel
04-28-2019, 06:37 PM
I think "ball skills" are different than "ballhawk skills." This guy has 3 interceptions in his college career and 1 interception last year. He is no ballhawk.

I'd still like to see a video of him displaying "ball skills," if anyone knows of one. Everything I see on youtube has this guy getting thrown on, turned around and quite non-athletic looking - and those are supposed to be his highlights.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xrFhzPuoFqQ

Steel Maniac
04-28-2019, 07:24 PM
I think "ball skills" are different than "ballhawk skills." This guy has 3 interceptions in his college career and 1 interception last year. He is no ballhawk.

I'd still like to see a video of him displaying "ball skills," if anyone knows of one. Everything I see on youtube has this guy getting thrown on, turned around and quite non-athletic looking - and those are supposed to be his highlights.

I think ball skills lend to ballhawk skills. Regardless, we are gonna see hard competition in camp and hopefully we can get a great backend out of this secondary.

NorthCoast
04-28-2019, 07:30 PM
Nelson could then compete against Hilton for the starting slot corner job...Could be misremembering, but I thought I read somewhere that Nelson had opportunity in the slot and didn't fair too well.

Moonie
04-28-2019, 08:21 PM
I think ball skills lend to ballhawk skills. Regardless, we are gonna see hard competition in camp and hopefully we can get a great backend out of this secondary.

Maybe. I kind of understood guys like Ike Taylor to have ball skills and guys like Polamalu to be a ballhawk. I'm sure there is overlap, and maybe I don't get it. Anyway, Layne is not a ballhawk by any measure, and it bothers me since we had dismal interception total last year.

hawaiiansteel
04-28-2019, 08:38 PM
Maybe. I kind of understood guys like Ike Taylor to have ball skills

so you must be able to have ball skills without actually ever catching the ball then...

Moonie
04-28-2019, 08:52 PM
so you must be able to have ball skills without actually ever catching the ball then...

The man had the worst hands I've ever seen in the NFL. I remember one up-for-grabs pass, that even Limas Sweed would have caught, easy interception for Taylor, and it goes between his hands without even touching them and hits him in the face like 5 pounds of mashed potatoes.

ikestops85
04-29-2019, 11:48 AM
The man had the worst hands I've ever seen in the NFL. I remember one up-for-grabs pass, that even Limas Sweed would have caught, easy interception for Taylor, and it goes between his hands without even touching them and hits him in the face like 5 pounds of mashed potatoes.

I guess you never saw Dwight "Hands of" Stone play for us. :eek:

Steel Maniac
04-29-2019, 11:50 AM
I guess you never saw Dwight "Hands of" Stone play for us. :eek:

blast from the past right there....

RuthlessBurgher
04-29-2019, 02:59 PM
Jeremy Fowler
ESPN Staff Writer

New Steelers corner Justin Layne, who's from Cleveland: "We're taking all the Browns stuff down now."

3d


Jeremy Fowler
ESPN Staff Writer

Steelers get corner help at No. 83 overall with Michigan State's Justin Layne, whom some in the building considered one of the better press-man corners in the draft. The Steelers need a talented young corner to develop alongside veterans Joe Haden and Steven Nelson. Layne's big frame (6-2, 192) fits the Steelers' mold for an outside corner. Many believed Layne would be a second-round pick. "I didn't think he'd be around this long," assistant coach Teryl Austin said.

3d

Ghost
04-29-2019, 03:13 PM
Didn't realize this but Layne went to Mich St as a WR and made the switch half way through his true freshman year. So we know he has hands and his potential is huge since he only played the position for 2.5 years.

Steel Maniac
04-29-2019, 03:18 PM
Didn't realize this but Layne went to Mich St as a WR and made the switch half way through his true freshman year. So we know he has hands and his potential is huge since he only played the position for 2.5 years.

Oh yeah; that's why after Bush, Layne is my favorite pick. Has the intangibles and is physical too. The sky's the limit for this kid. He and Nelson competing for that other starting spot will probably be the most watched battle.

Ghost
04-29-2019, 03:27 PM
Oh yeah; that's why after Bush, Layne is my favorite pick. Has the intangibles and is physical too. The sky's the limit for this kid. He and Nelson competing for that other starting spot will probably be the most watched battle.

I think Nelson has the spot, at least initially.

This was from Fittipaldi's post-gazette chat today:

Justin Layne will start out as a depth outside CB. There are no plans for him to start or play right away from what I gather.

RuthlessBurgher
04-29-2019, 03:32 PM
I think Nelson has the spot, at least initially.

This was from Fittipaldi's post-gazette chat today:

Justin Layne will start out as a depth outside CB. There are no plans for him to start or play right away from what I gather.

Well, yeah...considering that Steven Nelson has 4 years of NFL experience at CB, while Layne has 2 years of NCAA experience at CB after switching over from WR halfway through his freshman year...I'd say that Nelson has a pretty strong grasp on that starting outside corner spot opposite Joe Haden.

Steel Maniac
04-29-2019, 03:48 PM
I think Nelson has the spot, at least initially.

This was from Fittipaldi's post-gazette chat today:

Justin Layne will start out as a depth outside CB. There are no plans for him to start or play right away from what I gather.

Well, that's probably for the best. Nelson can get all the reps and settle in. Just in theory, it sure feels good to have a guy in the wings that you feel has actual potential.

Sugar
04-29-2019, 06:02 PM
Well, that's probably for the best. Nelson can get all the reps and settle in. Just in theory, it sure feels good to have a guy in the wings that you feel has actual potential.

This is in line with what Colbert was saying before the draft about not having the rookies start being optimal.

Steel Maniac
04-29-2019, 06:05 PM
This is in line with what Colbert was saying before the draft about not having the rookies start being optimal.

Sounds great; I can't wait.

pittpete
04-29-2019, 06:11 PM
Colbert was talking good things about Layne on Sirius this afternoon....

Oviedo
04-29-2019, 06:37 PM
This is in line with what Colbert was saying before the draft about not having the rookies start being optimal.

I think they have a well thought out strategy to get the players on the field when they prove ready even in their rookie year. Look at Edmunds last year and Watt the year before that

Steel Maniac
04-29-2019, 06:42 PM
I think they have a well thought out strategy to get the players on the field when they prove ready even in their rookie year. Look at Edmunds last year and Watt the year before that

I'm anxious to see Edmunds this year. I'm looking for him to take the next step.

Moonie
04-29-2019, 06:56 PM
Didn't realize this but Layne went to Mich St as a WR and made the switch half way through his true freshman year. So we know he has hands and his potential is huge since he only played the position for 2.5 years.

To the contrary, if he had hands, he'd have stayed at WR.

As Bradshaw once said when asked whether he was going to challenge a particular corner: "Yes, I will. If those guys could catch, they'd be receivers."

steeler_fan_in_t.o.
04-29-2019, 07:15 PM
Maybe. I kind of understood guys like Ike Taylor to have ball skills and guys like Polamalu to be a ballhawk. I'm sure there is overlap, and maybe I don't get it. Anyway, Layne is not a ballhawk by any measure, and it bothers me since we had dismal interception total last year.

I agree with Ike having ball skills but not being a ball hawk. He was usually in position, was able to track the ball in the air, and make a play on it, he just could not catch the ball if somebody handed it to him.

NorthCoast
04-29-2019, 08:24 PM
I think ball skills lend to ballhawk skills. Regardless, we are gonna see hard competition in camp and hopefully we can get a great backend out of this secondary.

So is this ballhawk or ball skills??.. I'm confused:

https://www.nydailynews.com/resizer/RWeXrzhXkB9DNNJkIHjtzlHDJqg=/800x0/arc-anglerfish-arc2-prod-tronc.s3.amazonaws.com/public/SECZF6QM6IQD6LBRZNUH2HXQJI.jpg

RuthlessBurgher
04-29-2019, 09:07 PM
I'm anxious to see Edmunds this year. I'm looking for him to take the next step.

But I thought any first round DB pick by the Colbert/Tomlin duo was predestined to be a hopeless failure?

Steel Maniac
04-30-2019, 01:09 AM
So is this ballhawk or ball skills??.. I'm confused:

https://www.nydailynews.com/resizer/RWeXrzhXkB9DNNJkIHjtzlHDJqg=/800x0/arc-anglerfish-arc2-prod-tronc.s3.amazonaws.com/public/SECZF6QM6IQD6LBRZNUH2HXQJI.jpg

Hahaha... some of both!!!!

Northern_Blitz
04-30-2019, 05:16 AM
So is this ballhawk or ball skills??.. I'm confused:

https://www.nydailynews.com/resizer/RWeXrzhXkB9DNNJkIHjtzlHDJqg=/800x0/arc-anglerfish-arc2-prod-tronc.s3.amazonaws.com/public/SECZF6QM6IQD6LBRZNUH2HXQJI.jpg

I miss Troy.

Ghost
04-30-2019, 09:41 AM
To the contrary, if he had hands, he'd have stayed at WR.

As Bradshaw once said when asked whether he was going to challenge a particular corner: "Yes, I will. If those guys could catch, they'd be receivers."

Actually he was a 4 star WR recruit coming out of high school. He's got hands. Mich St just needed to replace all there DBs and he was such an athlete he was able to make the switch.

Steel Maniac
04-30-2019, 10:14 AM
I miss Troy.

We've all missed him for years now.

RuthlessBurgher
04-30-2019, 10:15 AM
Steelers pick had to ditch his Browns socks

Posted by Darin Gantt on April 30, 2019, 7:45 AM EDT

Justin Layne was a Browns fan, right down to the soles of his feet.

At least until the moment he was drafted by the Steelers.

The Michigan State cornerback was wearing Browns socks Friday night while watching the draft, but quickly pulled them off as soon as the Steelers chose him 83rd overall.

“My dad threw away all his Browns stuff,” Layne said, via Matt Charboneau of the Detroit News. “He already has all of his Steelers stuff on him right now. We are ready, we are switching it up.

“We are taking all of the Browns stuff down right now. I’m ready.”

Layne grew up in Cleveland, so it stands to reason he was a fan of his hometown team, but he’s going to need some new laundry now.


.@_jlayne put on his @steelers hat and took off his @Browns socks. Pittsburgh selected the #Benedictine product with the 83rd overall pick of the #NFLDraft.

To say Layne has a chip on his shoulder would be an understatement. @wkyc @WKYCSports #Steelers #Browns pic.twitter.com/8xQkVtYbej

— Pat Chiesa (@PatChiesa) April 27, 2019

https://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2019/04/30/steelers-pick-had-to-ditch-his-browns-socks/

RuthlessBurgher
04-30-2019, 10:19 AM
Dude's motivated to prove it to his hometown team that they done screwed the pooch by selecting a puss like Greedy Williams in 2nd round.

Show the world that you were the best corner in this draft class by helping shut down OBJ, Jarvis Landry, and those other diva Brownies, Justin.

Northern_Blitz
04-30-2019, 10:27 AM
We've all missed him for years now.

And it will probably be much worse when Ben retires.

Captain Lemming
04-30-2019, 10:55 AM
To the contrary, if he had hands, he'd have stayed at WR.

As Bradshaw once said when asked whether he was going to challenge a particular corner: "Yes, I will. If those guys could catch, they'd be receivers."

Said the dude who had half a dozen 20 plus interception seasons.
My dad (a Cowboy fan) mocked that idiot statement for years......of course I had the last laugh come SB time. :)

Captain Lemming
04-30-2019, 11:00 AM
Steelers pick had to ditch his Browns socks

Posted by Darin Gantt on April 30, 2019, 7:45 AM EDT

Justin Layne was a Browns fan, right down to the soles of his feet.

At least until the moment he was drafted by the Steelers.

The Michigan State cornerback was wearing Browns socks Friday night while watching the draft, but quickly pulled them off as soon as the Steelers chose him 83rd overall.

“My dad threw away all his Browns stuff,” Layne said, via Matt Charboneau of the Detroit News. “He already has all of his Steelers stuff on him right now. We are ready, we are switching it up.

“We are taking all of the Browns stuff down right now. I’m ready.”

Layne grew up in Cleveland, so it stands to reason he was a fan of his hometown team, but he’s going to need some new laundry now.



https://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2019/04/30/steelers-pick-had-to-ditch-his-browns-socks/

Fact is........"finally" his family has a legitimate excuse to "escape" the horror of Brownie fandom. :)

Captain Lemming
04-30-2019, 11:02 AM
Dude's motivated to prove it to his hometown team that they done screwed the pooch by selecting a puss like Greedy Williams in 2nd round.

Show the world that you were the best corner in this draft class by helping shut down OBJ, Jarvis Landry, and those other diva Brownies, Justin.

Needs to get with Ben on how dominating your hometown team is the sweetest revenge for being overlooked by them in the draft. :)

Steel Maniac
04-30-2019, 11:03 AM
http://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/26632732/barnwell-every-nfl-team-most-likely-candidate-post-draft-trade-cut

Looks like they are saying Artie Burns isn't long for being a Steeler

Steel Maniac
04-30-2019, 11:04 AM
Needs to get with Ben on how dominating your hometown team is the sweetest revenge for being overlooked by them in the draft. :)

Yep.... like salt in the wound for the Browns for years.

RuthlessBurgher
04-30-2019, 11:13 AM
http://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/26632732/barnwell-every-nfl-team-most-likely-candidate-post-draft-trade-cut

Looks like they are saying Artie Burns isn't long for being a Steeler

The article you linked to only suggests that we will likely decline to exercise Burns' 5th year option for 2020, which is certainly not breaking news for anyone here.

The Steelers' "most likely candidate for post-draft trade or cut" already happened. It was Jon Bostic.

RuthlessBurgher
04-30-2019, 11:18 AM
Justin Layne among Day 2's top value picks

By Cynthia Frelund
NFL Network Analytics Expert
Published: April 27, 2019 at 12:46 a.m.
Updated: April 27, 2019 at 09:32 p.m.


Justin Layne, CB, Pittsburgh Steelers

Drafted No. 83 overall

Layne addresses a big need for the Steelers' defense and is a great strategic fit with the team's first-round pick, linebacker Devin Bush.

The former Michigan State corner had the lowest yards per target allowed in coverage in FBS since 2017 (4.5 yards per target allowed) and allowed just four deep receptions on 14 deep targets over the past two seasons, per PFF.

Michigan State boasted the best run defense in college football last season (77.9 rushing yards per game), so it's possible Layne's production was actually undervalued to some degree. When I use computer vision to track him when he's targeted on first down only (to limit the number of snaps in "obvious" passing situations), he ranks among the top five in FBS in completion percentage against.

Layne is an excellent upside pick for a defense that only had eight interceptions last season (28th in the NFL).


http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000001028528/article/2019-nfl-draft-jawaan-taylor-among-day-2s-top-value-picks?icampaign=trendingNews

Captain Lemming
04-30-2019, 11:21 AM
Justin Layne among Day 2's top value picks

By Cynthia Frelund
NFL Network Analytics Expert
Published: April 27, 2019 at 12:46 a.m.
Updated: April 27, 2019 at 09:32 p.m.


Justin Layne, CB, Pittsburgh Steelers

Drafted No. 83 overall

Layne addresses a big need for the Steelers' defense and is a great strategic fit with the team's first-round pick, linebacker Devin Bush.

The former Michigan State corner had the lowest yards per target allowed in coverage in FBS since 2017 (4.5 yards per target allowed) and allowed just four deep receptions on 14 deep targets over the past two seasons, per PFF.

Michigan State boasted the best run defense in college football last season (77.9 rushing yards per game), so it's possible Layne's production was actually undervalued to some degree. When I use computer vision to track him when he's targeted on first down only (to limit the number of snaps in "obvious" passing situations), he ranks among the top five in FBS in completion percentage against.

Layne is an excellent upside pick for a defense that only had eight interceptions last season (28th in the NFL).


http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000001028528/article/2019-nfl-draft-jawaan-taylor-among-day-2s-top-value-picks?icampaign=trendingNews


Nice article

fordfixer
04-30-2019, 11:28 AM
Steelers pick had to ditch his Browns socks

Posted by Darin Gantt on April 30, 2019, 7:45 AM EDT

Justin Layne was a Browns fan, right down to the soles of his feet.

At least until the moment he was drafted by the Steelers.

The Michigan State cornerback was wearing Browns socks Friday night while watching the draft, but quickly pulled them off as soon as the Steelers chose him 83rd overall.

“My dad threw away all his Browns stuff,” Layne said, via Matt Charboneau of the Detroit News. “He already has all of his Steelers stuff on him right now. We are ready, we are switching it up.

“We are taking all of the Browns stuff down right now. I’m ready.”

Layne grew up in Cleveland, so it stands to reason he was a fan of his hometown team, but he’s going to need some new laundry now.



https://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2019/04/30/steelers-pick-had-to-ditch-his-browns-socks/
The Steelers are still getting the stain out, one family at a time

pittpete
04-30-2019, 09:12 PM
Secondary coach Teryl Austin breaks down CB Justin Layne

https://www.steelers.com/video/austin-on-layne?fbclid=IwAR20MqlwqC5cv6i6divV9o3R_RYE9cPjfIZ kDk7Xg0aJZm3mI7MOpbpFi7w

hawaiiansteel
05-01-2019, 12:00 AM
Kevin Colbert on WR-Turned-CB Justin Layne: ‘We Think He’s Still On The Rise’

By Dave Bryan
Posted on April 30, 2019

The Pittsburgh Steelers 2019 draft class includes a few players who originally entered the colleges they played for at positions different from the ones they’ll enter the NFL at. Those two players, are cornerback Justin Layne and tight end Zach Gentry and they were recruited by Michigan State and Michigan, respectively, to play wide receiver and quarterback, respectively. During a Monday interview on SiriusXM NFL Radio, Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert talked about the upside both Gentry and Layne have upon entering the NFL due to both only playing the positions they mainly played in college a very brief time. We’ve already passed along what all Colbert had to say Monday about Gentry’s upside and today we’ll focus on all that he had to say about Layne.

Colbert’s Monday comments about Layne started and stemmed from a statement made by show co-host Jim Miler in which he indicated that the Michigan State product basically had to follow the same path to the NFL as current New York Giants cornerback Tony Lippett, also Spartan alumni, had to travel a few tears ago. In case you forgot, Lippett, who was drafted by the Miami Dolphins in the fifth round of the 2015 NFL Draft out of Michigan State, originally started his college career as a wide receiver before quickly being shifted to cornerback and then back to wide receiver again. As a matter of fact, Lippett led the Big Ten in receiving yards and ranked second in touchdown catches (11) while compiling six 100-yard receiving games in his senior season at Michigan State.

“We think he’s still on the rise, you know, only having been at a corner really for two years as a starter,” Colbert said of Layne. “And he does have length, he does have speed, he understands what receivers are doing because like you said, in reference to Lippett, he’s played that position. So sometimes when a corner’s reading a route, he knows what the route is and what the receiver’s thinking. And you know, Michigan State’s still used him some in a few packages running a couple of deep routes and comebacks and things of that nature. So he knows how to play, but he has ball skills as well. So, we don’t think we’ve seen the best of him, quite honestly. We think he is still on the rise and that’s exciting because he certainly has the length and the speed and the attitude.”

The Lippett and Layne comparison is an interesting one to make and especially when you consider both had similar paths to the NFL. It’s also interesting to compare Lippett’s and Layne’s combine results. As you can see below, Layne posted better combine numbers this year than Lippett did back in 2015. By the way, Lippett’s 2015 pSPARQ score was 105.7 while Layne’s was 128.9 this year. Layne also enters the NFL at 21 years of age while Lippett was just a few months shy of his 23rd birthday when he was drafted in 2015 by the Dolphins.

Despite not playing as much at cornerback during his college career at Michigan State than Layne did during his, Lippett still progressed quickly at the NFL level as a cornerback. After primarily playing on special teams during his 2015 rookie season with the Dolphins, Lippett became a starting cornerback for Miami in his second season and went on to finish fourth on the team with 67 tackles, second on the team with ten passes defensed, and leading the team with four interceptions.

After a solid second season in the NFL with the Dolphins, Lippett’s third season was spent on Miami’s Reserve/Injured list due to a torn Achilles he had suffered during training camp in 2017. After sitting out a year, the Dolphins ultimately released Lippett just ahead of the start of the 2018 regular season and he the Michigan State product later landed with the New York Giants. He played just 3 games with them this past season, however, and it will now be interesting to see if he’s able to make their 53-man roster this year.

In addition to Colbert liking Layne’s potential moving forward from draft day, new Steelers defensive assistant Teryl Austin unsurprisingly said the same thing immediately after Pittsburgh selected the young cornerback in the third-round.

“I really like him and his potential,” Austin said of Layne. “When I first saw him, I thought he was really quick bodied, long arms, good ball skills, and very competitive. I think that’s one thing that sticks out with him when you watch him, he’s competitive. He’s not afraid to throw it up in there. He’ll tackle, he’ll compete at the point of attack for a ball. So he’s got a lot of good things to work with.”

So, what is the flaw with a guy that’s 6-foot-2 with the kind of speed that Layne has? Austin isn’t sure.

“I’m not sure what the flaw is,” Austin said. “There are a lot of good football players that probably got picked before him. I think it’s just a matter of flavor. And I think when we saw him sitting where he was, I’m very excited to have him. I didn’t think he’d be around this long.”

Speaking of long, that exactly how Steelers defensive coordinator Keith Butler started off describing Layne when he first talked about the team’s latest drafted cornerback on Saturday.

“He’s a long, corner for us,” Butler said when asked if Layne is more of a special teams guy. “We like his length and he’s got good ball skills. Is he going to be a special teams guy? We’ll see when we get him out there.”

If things go as they’re currently likely planned, Layne won’t have to play much on the defensive side of the football during his rookie season. The hope probably is that he can work on becoming a more-rounded, more experienced cornerback during his rookie season during practices and perhaps push for a starting job ahead of his second season. The Steelers obviously haven’t done a great job when it comes to drafting and developing cornerbacks since Colbert arrived in Pittsburgh in 2000 so perhaps them now drafting one with a college wide receiver background will help change that. After all, Colbert has a much better track record when it comes to drafting and developing wide receivers that come out of the first three rounds.


https://steelersdepot.com/2019/04/kevin-colbert-on-wr-turned-cb-justin-layne-we-think-hes-still-on-the-rise/

RuthlessBurgher
05-02-2019, 04:08 PM
Wednesday, May 01, 2019 06:00 AM

'He's still learning, but we're excited about that'


Mike Prisuta

Steelers.com


Why you should be excited about third-round pick Justin Layne:


He looks the part: At 6-foot-1 and 192 pounds, Layne has the size the Steelers covet in a cornerback.


“I think that one of the things you look for when you’re evaluating cornerbacks, obviously you’re looking for some size,” senior defensive assistant/secondary coach Teryl Austin assessed. “You’re looking for length because when you start talking about a lot of these receivers that are being drafted, they are big men. And you have to be able to compete and win some 50/50 balls.


“So I think size, length, speed, and then ball skills are important because you have to be able to turn the ball over in this league.”


He plays a position that will always be perceived as a position of need: “You can’t have enough corners on your team,” Austin insisted. “Because of the amount of running they do, they help you on special teams. When they get nicked, you have to have people in there. You’re going to play four- or five-receiver packages nowadays, so those guys are important.


“I don’t think you can ever have enough corners on your roster.”


He’s not a finished product: Layne started out as a wide receiver at Michigan State and was switched to cornerback after the fourth game of his freshman season (2016). He also saw snaps and targets at wide receiver against Purdue and Michigan in 2018 due to the number of injuries the Spartans had sustained at the position.


“He's still learning how to play corner, but we're excited about that,” General Manager Kevin Colbert said.


He’s viewed as better than his stats suggest: Layne had one career reception and three career interceptions in three seasons at Michigan State, but the Steelers maintain he can play the ball.


“I’m comfortable with his ball skills after watching him play and talking to people and being at his workout,” Austin said. “I’m comfortable with where he is, it’s just a matter of turning that into production at this level.”


Layne registered 16 of his 27 career passes defensed in 2018.


“We like his length and he’s got good ball skills,” defensive coordinator Keith Butler said.


He craves contact: “I think that’s one thing that sticks out with him when you watch him, he’s competitive,” Austin said. “He’s not afraid to throw it up in there, he’ll tackle. He’ll compete at the point of attack for a ball.”


He’s played against top competition: One of the wide receivers Layne battled in 2018 was Arizona State’s N’Keal Harry, who was drafted 32nd overall by New England.


“I saw him play that game and that’s the one thing I thought, that recover’s very good,” Austin said. “And (Layne) competed very well. He lost a couple, but that’s going to happen when you’re playing a guy that’s that type of quality. But I was very pleased with his performance that game. He didn’t back down. He didn’t give an inch. And he just kept coming at it play after play.”

https://www.steelers.com/news/he-s-still-learning-but-we-re-excited-about-that

fordfixer
05-03-2019, 07:53 PM
https://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2019/5/3/18528253/father-of-michigan-state-cb-justin-layne-explains-why-he-repainted-his-house-in-steelers-colors-news?fbclid=IwAR1su2vSOkjwQF0utcjztU0OxEXIxmga4Bv4 lOGZKNtwLXCr1cKUwAsuiPU

RuthlessBurgher
05-06-2019, 02:18 PM
ESPN NFL Draft expert Todd McShay calls CB Justin Layne his favorite of the Steelers draft

Everyone has their own opinion on the Steelers’ 2019 draft class, but ESPN expert Todd McShay has one particular player he liked out of the 9 players.

By Jeff Hartman
May 6, 2019, 11:52am EDT

No matter what we do in life, we all have our favorites. Whether it is our favorite NFL team, the music we listen to or the foods we eat. It is natural to have a favorite.

But what about players which are drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers?

Yes, even there we all tend to have our own personal favorites, and we aren’t alone. ESPN’s NFL Draft expert Todd McShay went through all 32 NFL teams’ draft picks and picked out his favorite of the bunch.

What makes a player be considered for the “best pick” or a “favorite”? McShay explains here:


Remember: “Best pick” does not necessarily mean “best player.” Team needs, the value a player presented in comparison to my board, and any trades related to the pick all factor in here. New 49ers pass-rusher Nick Bosa is obviously the top prospect, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he is the Niners’ best pick of the weekend in Nashville. (Spoiler: He’s not).

With that said, here is who McShay likes the most out of the Steelers’ 2019 draft class:


Pittsburgh Steelers

Justin Layne, CB, Michigan State (Round 3, No. 83 overall)

Joe Haden is in a contract year, and Artie Burns just hasn’t done a whole lot despite being a high pick in 2016. So corner is a sneaky need for the Steelers. And they got Layne 30 spots past where I ranked him. Even with Steven Nelson in black and yellow, Layne should push for a top-three job right out of the gate. He is a press corner who can read receivers and then turn and run with them very well.

The Devin Bush pick received serious consideration here, as he will be the face of the defense without Ryan Shazier. But the value on Layne was just too good. The Michigan State corner needs to get stronger still, but he has a high ceiling.

When you think about the nine players the Steelers brought in throughout the 7-round selection process, you have to ask yourself which pick was your favorite. But before answering right away, you have to ask yourself how you deem a player your favorite? Do you follow McShay’s thinking? Or do you follow a different path to finding your favorite draft pick?

https://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com/2019/5/6/18530714/espn-nfl-draft-expert-todd-mcshay-calls-cb-justin-layne-his-favorite-of-the-steelers-draft-news

hawaiiansteel
05-06-2019, 05:29 PM
Questfor7: I feel like Justin Layne was a steal at 83. Many had a second round grade on him. Do you think eventually he could start outside and consequently use Nelson in the slot?

Ray Fittipaldo: Well, Teryl Austin said he's going to start his career as an outside CB. We'll have to wait and see how it goes for him. His size and athleticism make him a nice matchup piece in the secondary if he can ever put it all together.


https://www.post-gazette.com/sports/steelers/2019/05/06/Ray-Fittipaldo-s-Steelers-chat-05-06-19/stories/201905060077

Steel Maniac
05-06-2019, 05:47 PM
All that is code for, " Artie Burns needs to put some newspaper underneath himself so those wood splinters won't gather in his ass. "

NorthCoast
05-06-2019, 06:56 PM
The Layne pick is very intriguing. Only two years of CB play but physical traits that can't be ignored. If he is good enough that opposing QBs need to hang on to the ball for a half tick longer, it might be all the defense needs to shut down passing games with a strong blitz.

RuthlessBurgher
05-10-2019, 02:48 PM
Jeremy Fowler
ESPN Staff Writer

Steelers third-round corner Justin Layne said his switch from receiver to defensive back at Michigan State paid off. "I figured there are a lot of 6-2, 6-3 receivers but there aren't a lot of 6-2, 6-3 corners who can move like me," said Layne, who got his hands on a deep ball on Day 1 of rookie minicamp.

37m

flippy
05-10-2019, 03:03 PM
Questfor7: I feel like Justin Layne was a steal at 83. Many had a second round grade on him. Do you think eventually he could start outside and consequently use Nelson in the slot?

Ray Fittipaldo: Well, Teryl Austin said he's going to start his career as an outside CB. We'll have to wait and see how it goes for him. His size and athleticism make him a nice matchup piece in the secondary if he can ever put it all together.


https://www.post-gazette.com/sports/steelers/2019/05/06/Ray-Fittipaldo-s-Steelers-chat-05-06-19/stories/201905060077

Anyone know why he didn't go higher? Just lack of experience?

I like him as a 3rd round selection, but I also thought if there was a run on corners, he'd be a guy we'd panic and take in the first round somehow.

I like the pick and think it's a big dice roll. He's either going to be boom or bust. No in between. He's either a monster at CB or runs around like an uncoordinated baby giraffe playing against NFL talent.

SteelerMaine83
05-10-2019, 06:40 PM
There are always some shocking "fallers" in the draft, and to me it seemed there were a lot in this draft. I think we may have finally "hit" on a CB with Layne. I know many here believe Artie Burns will or should be kept around for another chance, but we've got Haden, Nelson, Hilton and Layne clearly in front of him, he can't go on PS, and he'll need to beat less-expensive Sutton and B. Allen to get a spot. We're not keeping 7 CBs in the 53. 6 CB, 4 S. I don't know that Burns can outplay either Sutton or Allen at this point.

RuthlessBurgher
05-12-2019, 03:43 PM
2019 Steelers Draft: Justin Layne has the swagger to back up his athleticism
To get to know the Steelers’ 2019 NFL Draft picks I reached out to their college affiliates to get to know them a bit more!

By Jeff Hartman on May 11, 2019 1:05 pm

When any NFL team drafts new players, fans want to learn as much as they can about those particular prospects. What do they do well? What do they struggle with? How about their highlight reel?


For me, I like to talk to people who actually know them best, and this is one of the best aspects of working for SB Nation. After the Steelers selected their full compliment of players, I reached out to the writers who covered them in college to get to know them a little better.

In my opinion, these writers are the ones who watch them every play, every week for multiple years. So, today we hear from Kyle Thele from The Only Colors (SB Nation’s Michigan State website) as he gives us the lowdown on Pittsburgh’s second third round selection Justin Layne.

See the interview below:

1. Layne was a WR converted into a DB. Has this transition been a smooth one for Layne, or a struggle at times?

The transition has been pretty smooth. Layne is a phenomenal athlete. The move wasn’t forced or rushed, to his credit he earned all the accolades he received. With that being said, it was a transition. He didn’t just decide one day that he was going to be a corner. Layne grew into the role and slowly took on a bigger and bigger responsibility.

2. Layne had himself a tremendous combine and turned plenty of heads. What are his strengths as a DB at a big-time school like Michigan State?

Athletically, he is a perfect fit as a corner. Extremely quick and can stay in a receivers pocket throughout a route. MSU’s defense relies on corners being left on an island to slow receivers and Layne was perfect in that role. His stats don’t look gaudy mostly because quarterbacks just weren’t testing him.


3. On the flip side, what are some areas of Layne’s game which need improved upon?

Layne isn’t strong enough yet to body some of the bigger receivers in the NFL. He depends on his speed to be in the right position, so if he’s caught out of place, the receiver will stay open. Also, MSU corners have historically had issues with penalties after moving on to the NFL. They get away with a lot more in college than they do on Sundays.

4. While Layne has talked about having a chip on his shoulder not being drafted until the third round, what is his demeanor like on the field? Is he hard-nosed and mouthy? Or is a player who lets his play speak for him?

He’s a corner, so he’s going to have an attitude. Fans should be upset if he didn’t. He is extremely confident in himself and most definitely not shy. But in no way would I say any of that hindered his play. He was right to be confident and he should have a chip on his shoulder.

5. If you could sum Layne up into one word, or sentence, what would it be?

No Fly Zone: 2018. Layne lived up to the responsibilities of being the next shut-down corner at MSU.

A huge shout out to Kyle for taking the time to answer my questions! Be sure to check back to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the Steelers as they press on throughout the offseason.

Northern_Blitz
05-12-2019, 06:19 PM
There are always some shocking "fallers" in the draft, and to me it seemed there were a lot in this draft. I think we may have finally "hit" on a CB with Layne. I know many here believe Artie Burns will or should be kept around for another chance, but we've got Haden, Nelson, Hilton and Layne clearly in front of him, he can't go on PS, and he'll need to beat less-expensive Sutton and B. Allen to get a spot. We're not keeping 7 CBs in the 53. 6 CB, 4 S. I don't know that Burns can outplay either Sutton or Allen at this point.

Here's hoping you're right. It would be nice to have a good player at CB on a rookie deal!

hawaiiansteel
05-12-2019, 06:38 PM
I don't know that Burns can outplay either Sutton or Allen at this point.

what has Brian Allen ever done to make you believe that?

Steel Maniac
05-12-2019, 06:47 PM
Please.. Allen is another of the many failed experiments of the secondary. So much deadweight still on this team.

Ernie
05-13-2019, 05:09 AM
I haven't given up on B. Allen yet. There is talk of trying him at Safety. Hopefully he sticks.

ikestops85
05-13-2019, 04:36 PM
I haven't given up on B. Allen yet. There is talk of trying him at Safety. Hopefully he sticks.

I haven't either. It amazing how some on here think players like Allen, a 5th rounder, should join the team and immediately play like Daryl Revis. Some players need time to learn and get comfortable.

hawaiiansteel
05-13-2019, 06:06 PM
I haven't given up on B. Allen yet. There is talk of trying him at Safety. Hopefully he sticks.

https://static.clubs.nfl.com/image/private/t_photo_album_2x/f_auto/steelers/mkghrlkbs1jynekjnffy.jpg

Buzz
05-13-2019, 06:42 PM
I haven't either. It amazing how some on here think players like Allen, a 5th rounder, should join the team and immediately play like Daryl Revis. Some players need time to learn and get comfortable.

He's had a couple of years. If he doesn't show anything more than he has so far, we need to cut him this summer and give someone else a chance.

Steel Maniac
05-13-2019, 06:44 PM
He's had a couple of years. If he doesn't show anything more than he has so far, we need to cut him this summer and give someone else a chance.

Boom.................

hawaiiansteel
05-13-2019, 07:38 PM
He's had a couple of years. If he doesn't show anything more than he has so far, we need to cut him this summer and give someone else a chance.

you mean you're not impressed with Allen's career stats of 3 total tackles, zero forced fumbles, zero passes defensed and zero interceptions?

RuthlessBurgher
05-13-2019, 08:58 PM
For the record, Brian Allen did not make the 53 man roster coming out of camp last year. We cut him as the calendar turned over to September, he cleared waivers, and we added him to the practice squad. He spent a month on our P.S. before we promoted him back onto our active roster in early October.

steelguin
05-14-2019, 10:18 AM
you mean you're not impressed with Allen's career stats of 3 total tackles, zero forced fumbles, zero passes defensed and zero interceptions?

How many games did he start/play to get these awesome stats?

hawaiiansteel
05-14-2019, 10:23 PM
How many games did he start/play to get these awesome stats?

16


http://www.nfl.com/player/brianallen/2558237/careerstats

hawaiiansteel
05-30-2019, 04:25 PM
Steelers Sign 2019 Draft Pick, CB Justin Layne

By Dave Bryan
Posted on May 30, 2019

The Pittsburgh Steelers now have their entire 2019 draft class signed as cornerback Justin Layne has now signed his rookie four-year contract as of Thursday afternoon.

Layne, the Steelers second of two third-round selections this year, was the lone member of this year’s draft class to be unsigned once the team started their annual OTA practices a few weeks ago.

Layne, an underclassman who converted from wide receiver to cornerback during his 2016 freshman season at Michigan State, measured in at this year’s scouting combine at 6016, 192-pounds with 33-inch arms and 9 1/4-inch hands. He ran his 40-yard-dash in Indianapolis in 4.5-seconds and posted a 37.5-inch vertical jump in addition to an 11’2″ broad jump. His short shuttle time at the combine was 4.09-seconds and his 3-cone time was 6.9-seconds.

Speculation from Over the Cap is that Layne signed a four-year contract that totals out at around $3,442,184 and include a signing bonus of roughly $922,184. Those numbers provided would result in a 2019 salary cap charge for Layne of $725,546.

The holdup in getting Layne signed might have been related to offset or guaranteed money language in his contract. Whatever the reason, he and the rest of the Steelers 2019 draft picks are now all signed way before the team’s OTA practices end.

Last season the Steelers didn’t have all of their 2018 draft class signed until July 24 as that’s when first-round selection Terrell Edmunds finally inked his rookie four-year contract.


https://steelersdepot.com/2019/05/steelers-sign-2019-draft-pick-cb-justin-layne/

ikestops85
05-31-2019, 10:35 AM
He's had a couple of years. If he doesn't show anything more than he has so far, we need to cut him this summer and give someone else a chance.

I'm glad you weren't around when James Harrison was trying to make the team. :nono

RuthlessBurgher
06-03-2019, 04:18 PM
Monday, Jun 03, 2019 07:00 AM

Layne is learning the ropes


Teresa Varley

Steelers.com


It didn’t take long for the paint brush to come out at the home of Justin Layne when he got the call that he was selected by the Steelers in the third round of the 2019 NFL Draft.


Before he even made it to Pittsburgh for the team’s Draft Party, his dad, Dre Layne, was already buying paint. Lots of paint. Black and gold paint. And it was used to cover two colors that a Steelers fan wouldn’t have in their home, brown and orange.


Layne grew up a Browns fan, something natural for a kid from Cleveland, Ohio. But his dad, let’s just say he was a Browns fanatic. So much so that he painted his bathroom brown and orange, with the Browns stripe, and even had a dog bone on the bathroom sink. That quickly changed the minute the Steelers selected Layne and the colors of choice were black and gold and a Steelers logo and Terrible Towel were a must in the bathroom.


“I was raised a Browns fan,” said Layne. “I can’t say I’m a diehard like my father. My father is a diehard fan. He had the bathroom painted, everything. It had orange and white stripes. We’ve had pictures in there. Statues in there. He was a diehard fan.


“But he’s done with it. The basement. It’s a man cave type of thing, so he’s got pictures in there. He changed that. He changed it all to the Steelers.”


There is no doubt Layne’s dad had hoped his son would be drafted by the Browns. After all, who wouldn’t want their kid to go to the team they cheered for, the hometown team. But once the Steelers selected the cornerback from Michigan State, it didn’t matter if they were one of the Browns biggest rivals or not, they were now his team.


“He was just happy. That’s all I can explain,” said Layne. “He was a little emotional, but he was good. I got a little emotional. I’m just thankful for the opportunity. There were some tears.


“I talk to him every day about it now. He asks so many questions. I try to give him little details. He doesn’t even talk about the Browns anymore.”


As crazy as it may seem, Layne actually had a feeling that he would be going to the Steelers, that Pittsburgh would be his new home. Why he felt that way, he really has no idea. But his feeling was right on point.


“I literally had a feeling the entire time,” said Layne, who did say the Steelers were his favorite team on Madden. “Ever since I went through all this pre-draft stuff, I had a feeling and I don’t know why. Through high school and college, somehow I always ended up at the rival school. This time it was the rival team.


“When I came on my pre-draft visit, it was great. I loved it here. That’s another reason why I wanted to come here. I love it all here. Everybody is just so cool and cordial, so it’s great out here. Everybody is just cool here, felt like family. It’s a good environment, a good vibe.”


That vibe has gone to the next level now that Layne is taking part in the team’s OTAs, learning the ropes from the veterans and seeing how business is done.


“It’s been great,” said Layne. “Everybody is unselfish, trying to help each other. Help the younger guys. If I do something wrong, my eyes are in the wrong place, they will pull me aside. My eyes are wide open.


“There is something I am learning every day. A lot of checks, reads. It’s not just one call. It could be three different calls in one play. It’s tough to adapt but I am learning every day. I am trying to get in shape and learn the plays.


“I feel like I am getting there. As soon as I have something down pat we have something else. That is just part of the game. I still have a long way to go, but I think I am doing pretty well so far.”


Like most rookies one of the biggest adjustments Layne has to make is not thinking so much. Yes, he wants to know what he is doing, but it’s about reacting rather than thinking and that takes time.


“I find myself doing that a lot,” said Layne. “I think once I buckle down a little bit I will play a lot faster. It’s still a learning process.


“Each day I just have to go back home and study. You can’t just get one install and expect to learn it. You have to be a student of the game.”


https://www.steelers.com/news/layne-is-learning-the-ropes

hawaiiansteel
06-04-2019, 04:04 PM
Justin Layne Trying To ‘Keep Making Plays’ After Getting ‘A Couple Of Picks’ In OTAs

By Matthew Marczi
Posted on June 4, 2019

One of the things that the Pittsburgh Steelers talked about leading up to the 2019 NFL Draft was the possibility of shifting their focus in their evaluations of the cornerback position, focusing less on players who are stout defenders against the run—less of necessity in man coverage—and more on those who know how to take the ball away.

Then they drafted Justin Layne in the third round, how, despite previously having been a wide receiver, only intercepted three passes during his three-year college career, one each season. He did record a lot of passes defensed, particularly in his final season, but three interceptions is not the resume of a ballhawk.

In spite of that, he and his college coaches came to his defense after the draft in reference to his ability to record interceptions. His position coach at Michigan State said that “there’s no doubt that the ball skills are there and he can make plays, and he definitely had some of the better hands on the team. A lot of times, they didn’t throw his way, so all that plays a factor in getting a bunch of interceptions and all that type of stuff, too”.

Defensive assistant Teryl Austin said after they drafted him that he is “comfortable with his ball skills after watching him play and talking to people and being at his workout. And I’m comfortable with where he is and it’s just a matter of turning that into production at this level”.

So perhaps it’s a positive sign that he has already gotten a couple of interceptions for himself—though not yet from Ben Roethlisberger, he said—during the first two weeks of OTA practices. As we already know, practice picks don’t necessarily translate to getting them in meaningful snaps, but it’s better to record them than not.

“I had a couple of picks”, he told reporters following one recent OTA session, from the team’s website. “I made a couple of plays, got my hands on the ball a couple of times. I’m just trying to keep getting better, keep making plays”.

What sort of opportunities he will have to make plays once the regular season rolls around remains to be seen. Before drafting him, the Steelers invested heavily in Steven Nelson in free agency to be a starter, along side Joe Haden, who may well get an extension this summer. In the slot is Mike Hilton, who is not his direct competition since he only plays inside, and as of now, Layne said that he has only worked outside. I wouldn’t expect that to change much, either.


https://steelersdepot.com/2019/06/justin-layne-trying-to-keep-making-plays-after-getting-a-couple-of-picks-in-otas/

Northern_Blitz
06-04-2019, 04:24 PM
Justin Layne Trying To ‘Keep Making Plays’ After Getting ‘A Couple Of Picks’ In OTAs

By Matthew Marczi
Posted on June 4, 2019

One of the things that the Pittsburgh Steelers talked about leading up to the 2019 NFL Draft was the possibility of shifting their focus in their evaluations of the cornerback position, focusing less on players who are stout defenders against the run—less of necessity in man coverage—and more on those who know how to take the ball away.

Then they drafted Justin Layne in the third round, how, despite previously having been a wide receiver, only intercepted three passes during his three-year college career, one each season. He did record a lot of passes defensed, particularly in his final season, but three interceptions is not the resume of a ballhawk.

In spite of that, he and his college coaches came to his defense after the draft in reference to his ability to record interceptions. His position coach at Michigan State said that “there’s no doubt that the ball skills are there and he can make plays, and he definitely had some of the better hands on the team. A lot of times, they didn’t throw his way, so all that plays a factor in getting a bunch of interceptions and all that type of stuff, too”.

Defensive assistant Teryl Austin said after they drafted him that he is “comfortable with his ball skills after watching him play and talking to people and being at his workout. And I’m comfortable with where he is and it’s just a matter of turning that into production at this level”.

So perhaps it’s a positive sign that he has already gotten a couple of interceptions for himself—though not yet from Ben Roethlisberger, he said—during the first two weeks of OTA practices. As we already know, practice picks don’t necessarily translate to getting them in meaningful snaps, but it’s better to record them than not.

“I had a couple of picks”, he told reporters following one recent OTA session, from the team’s website. “I made a couple of plays, got my hands on the ball a couple of times. I’m just trying to keep getting better, keep making plays”.

What sort of opportunities he will have to make plays once the regular season rolls around remains to be seen. Before drafting him, the Steelers invested heavily in Steven Nelson in free agency to be a starter, along side Joe Haden, who may well get an extension this summer. In the slot is Mike Hilton, who is not his direct competition since he only plays inside, and as of now, Layne said that he has only worked outside. I wouldn’t expect that to change much, either.


https://steelersdepot.com/2019/06/justin-layne-trying-to-keep-making-plays-after-getting-a-couple-of-picks-in-otas/

Glad that he's making plays.

But, I tend to think it's like last year when we had the most picks Alex K had ever charted in preseason practices.

The thing I hate about practicing against ourselves is that I'm never sure if it's someone like Layne playing well, or just our non-Ben QBs continuing to throw too many picks.

I guess the take away here is something like at least Layne didn't drop the balls?

hawaiiansteel
06-09-2019, 10:01 PM
PFF PIT Steelers
@PFF_Steelers

There were 90 draft-eligible CBs that were targeted at least 40 times on passes ten or more yards past the line of scrimmage since 2017.#Steelers rookie CB @_jlayne allowed the lowest completion % of them all on those passes at just 22.4%.

Jun 7, 2019


https://steelerswire.usatoday.com/2019/06/09/steelers-cb-justin-layne-checks-all-the-boxes-for-a-shutdown-cornerback/

Steel Maniac
06-09-2019, 10:13 PM
Glad that he's making plays.

But, I tend to think it's like last year when we had the most picks Alex K had ever charted in preseason practices.

The thing I hate about practicing against ourselves is that I'm never sure if it's someone like Layne playing well, or just our non-Ben QBs continuing to throw too many picks.

I guess the take away here is something like at least Layne didn't drop the balls?


He didn’t drop the balls; that indeed IS the best thing.

Jooser
06-10-2019, 08:10 AM
Steelers CB Justin Layne checks all the boxes for a shutdown cornerback



By: Curt Popejoy (https://steelerswire.usatoday.com/author/curt-popejoy/)

Did the Pittsburgh Steelers get the most underrated cornerback in the 2019 NFL draft class? Depending on how you measure potential NFL success, the answer could be yes. The Steelers drafted the former Michigan State star in the third round and got the cornerback with the lowest completion percentage against last season.

There are lots of ways to look at a cornerback prospect in the evaluation process, but Layne really does check all the boxes. He’s not legit NFL size at 6-foot-2 and 192 pounds. His speed is solid after posting a 4.5 40-yard dash.

But when you pair up 15 pass breakups as a junior along with a 22.4 percent completion percentage against, you understand Pittsburgh has the makings of a true shutdown corner.

The only question now is how quickly will the Steelers get Layne on the field and what will that look like? Pittsburgh has Joe Haden and Steven Nelson as starters and Mike Hilton is locked in as the slot cornerback. He might not contribute a ton as a rookie but the future of the position looks bright with Haden a free agent at the end of the season.



I've yet to read any news on Layne that are negative or even so-so about this pick. Fingers crossed we finally found a guy who can help put some fear back in our opponents when it comes to passing the ball.

hawaiiansteel
06-11-2019, 01:46 AM
Film Room: CB Justin Layne Vs Inside And Outside Routes

By Tom Mead
Posted on June 10, 2019

Admittedly, to this point I hadn’t watched a lot of film on new Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Justin Layne so I was looking forward to digging a little deeper. With 24 career pass breaks up in college including 11 in his last 5 games I wanted to take a look at the positives and negatives of his coverage ability.

My thought going in was to look at the different routes that he faced and determine those that he performed well against and those where there is room to improve. In the end, it came down to one factor that generally made the biggest difference. Inside routes vs outside routes.

In the games watched, the majority of the time he played the boundary corner. This puts him on the short side of the field closest to the sideline. Coverages were mixed but consisted of a lot of press coverage.

From this position, there is quite a bit that goes into coverage. You need to be balanced and patient to mirror the initial move of the WR and not react too quickly. Be able to open your hips and accelerate to match the speed and stay on the hip of the WR. Whether to jam at the LOS and with which arm based on the release and the timing of that jam. That’s just a part of what’s happening from play to play.

When the receiver releases to the outside Layne seems much more comfortable in his abilities. His patience, footwork, hips and general demeanor seem relaxed and confident. It could be the fact that he can use the sideline like another defender to his advantage.

On inside releases, there were generally different results. He get on his heels and gets off balance, arms are out of control and gives up space between himself and the WR too easily. He also takes a false step with his right foot regardless of the release that needs to be fixed.

Outside

Vs Utah State at the top of the screen the WR hesitates his release and then tries to use speed up the outside. Layne stays patient and shuffles his feet to stay with the WR. He’s in great position to the inside to try to defend the back shoulder underthrow.

Vs Ohio State at the bottom of the screen. The WR uses a jab to the inside and releases outside. Layne stays balanced, feet underneath him to mirror the WR at the LOS. On release he opens his right hip and uses his left and to redirect. He closes the distance to get hip to hip and gets his head around to break up the pass.

At Nebraska, this isn’t a great clip because they go of screen for second. Look closely and you can see the false step forward with his right foot. But again he uses his inside hand to disrupt, gets on the hip and shows an ability change direction with the WR and break up the pass on the comeback route to the outside.

Inside

Vs Utah State, at the top of the screen the WR is going stem forward and on his third step break inside. There doesn’t seem to be an indication of a fake to the outside but on the second step Layne starts to open his hips to the outside. In order to recover, he has to flip his inside hip and he kicks his inside leg way back (almost 2 yards) to plant so he can recover.

Vs Utah State, at the bottom of the screen. Here the WR does a slight fake to the outside and again his hips start to open to the outside. The WR runs a drag route through the middle leaving him to chase.

Vs Michigan, here you can see the false step forward. It’s a small thing but this changes his balance immediately. Then look at the distance between him and the WR, the opposite of the outside routes. If this route breaks in, he won’t be able to make a play on the ball.

Vs Ohio State at the top of the screen, the Buckeyes ran inside routes against him all game. Again a slight fake to move the hip to the outside. Way too much space between them but he gets saved by an errant throw.

Vs Ohio State at the bottom of the screen, the receiver takes a big step on his third step to make it look like he’s going to use speed to the outside. It gets Layne to open his hip for a vertical route giving the WR 3 yards of space for the reception.

This is just a few examples but like I said earlier there seems to be a comfort in his game on plays to the outside. To the inside there is a lot of room to upgrade from what he did at Michigan State. No college player comes in as a finished product. I’m sure the staff has identified areas that can be enhanced and putting in the work is the next step.

Now I’m going to use that D word that some of you don’t like to hear when it comes to defensive backs. Yes, the Steelers have struggled to develop DB’s but as I have mentioned in some of my profiles, that was with different coaches. We have to give the new coaches a chance and I’m looking forward to seeing what Tom Bradley and Teryl Austin can do for Layne and the other young DB’s on the team. His development is going to be the key and being he is young and still new to the position it could be easier to get rid of those bad habits.


https://steelersdepot.com/2019/06/film-room-cb-justin-layne-vs-inside-and-outside-routes/

Captain Lemming
06-11-2019, 08:24 AM
PFF PIT Steelers
@PFF_Steelers

There were 90 draft-eligible CBs that were targeted at least 40 times on passes ten or more yards past the line of scrimmage since 2017.#Steelers rookie CB @_jlayne allowed the lowest completion % of them all on those passes at just 22.4%.

Jun 7, 2019


https://steelerswire.usatoday.com/2019/06/09/steelers-cb-justin-layne-checks-all-the-boxes-for-a-shutdown-cornerback/

THIS is impressive

hawaiiansteel
06-16-2019, 12:18 PM
Justin Layne can be the answer to Pittsburgh's outside cornerback problem

BY DANIEL RYMER
JUN 14, 2019

The Pittsburgh Steelers have a long history of tough, hard-nosed defenses throughout their history. From guys like James Harrison and Joey Porter to Troy Polamalu and Ryan Clark, the Steelers have seemingly always had talent on the defensive side of the ball. However, at least in the PFF era (since 2006), the Steelers’ outside cornerbacks haven’t performed as well as you would think, which is surprising given the team’s recent Super Bowl victories and deep playoff runs.

The last time the Steelers had an outside cornerback finish a season with an overall grade higher than 80.0 was in 2014 when William Gay earned a mark of 81.6. Before that, was Cortez Allen’s mark of 85.5 in 2012. Other than that, the Steelers have had only two other cornerbacks earn grades higher than 80.0 from snaps at outside cornerback in a single season, and both of those were all the way back in 2008 (William Gay, 87.2 and Bryant McFadden, 83.0).

The Steelers are long overdue for a true playmaker on the outside.

Enter Justin Layne, whom the Steelers selected with the 83rd overall pick in the draft. The former Michigan State cornerback had a solid three-year college career, capped off by his 87.1 overall grade last season which ranked 18th out of 569 qualifying cornerbacks in the country.

The Steelers had only one cornerback earn a grade higher than 70.0 last season (Joe Haden, 70.9). As a team, Pittsburgh had a coverage grade of 75.8, ranking 18th in the NFL. In a league where stopping the pass is becoming more important with each passing year, the Steelers need to do better if they want to return to the postseason in 2019 after missing the dance last year. Injecting new talent in the secondary could help do just that, as Layne was outstanding in college.

Layne lined up at outside corner on 713 of his 833 total snaps last season. Considering that help at outside cornerback is precisely what the Steelers need, Layne could be the answer to Pittsburgh’s outside cornerback problem. Standing at 6’2”, Layne has the length needed to hang with the NFL’s big wide receivers, yet he also has the speed to hang with the fast guys as well.

Over the last three college seasons, Layne has earned an elite coverage grade of 91.0 when lined up as an outside corner, which is tied for fifth among the 147 outside cornerbacks with at least 100 targets over that period. Among that same group, Layne also ranks 11th in forced incompletion percentage (20%), 12th in passer rating allowed (66.9 and 19th in catch rate allowed (50.4%).

One trait of a great corner is the ability to limit big plays downfield, and Layne has done just that over the past two seasons. On throws 10-plus yards downfield since 2017, Layne has allowed only 11 receptions out of 49 targets for 259 yards. He has also forced an incompletion on 30.6% of such targets, ranking sixth among this year’s 89 draft-eligible cornerbacks.

As great as he is in coverage, he’s also a good (and willing) run-defender, as his run-defense grade over the past two years (84.2) ranks in the top 20 among cornerbacks. Layne has shown amazing progression throughout his three years in college, as he increased his overall grade by nearly 10.0 points every season. He was our sixth-ranked cornerback in the draft, yet he was the 10th cornerback drafted, making him a steal in our eyes.

Layne is great on the field, but the thing that Steelers fans should probably be most excited about is his confidence. As he said in an interview with Pro Football Focus back in March, “They’re going to get a lockdown corner. They’re going to get a playmaker, a willing tackler.”


https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/pro-justin-layne-can-be-the-answer-to-pittsburghs-outside-cornerback-problem?utm_source=cj&amp;utm_medium=affiliate&amp;utm_cam paign=cjaff&amp;cjevent=f1f9fb8d905111e982cb00e60a1c0e 13

Oviedo
06-16-2019, 03:55 PM
Justin Layne can be the answer to Pittsburgh's outside cornerback problem

BY DANIEL RYMER
JUN 14, 2019

The Pittsburgh Steelers have a long history of tough, hard-nosed defenses throughout their history. From guys like James Harrison and Joey Porter to Troy Polamalu and Ryan Clark, the Steelers have seemingly always had talent on the defensive side of the ball. However, at least in the PFF era (since 2006), the Steelers’ outside cornerbacks haven’t performed as well as you would think, which is surprising given the team’s recent Super Bowl victories and deep playoff runs.

The last time the Steelers had an outside cornerback finish a season with an overall grade higher than 80.0 was in 2014 when William Gay earned a mark of 81.6. Before that, was Cortez Allen’s mark of 85.5 in 2012. Other than that, the Steelers have had only two other cornerbacks earn grades higher than 80.0 from snaps at outside cornerback in a single season, and both of those were all the way back in 2008 (William Gay, 87.2 and Bryant McFadden, 83.0).

The Steelers are long overdue for a true playmaker on the outside.

Enter Justin Layne, whom the Steelers selected with the 83rd overall pick in the draft. The former Michigan State cornerback had a solid three-year college career, capped off by his 87.1 overall grade last season which ranked 18th out of 569 qualifying cornerbacks in the country.

The Steelers had only one cornerback earn a grade higher than 70.0 last season (Joe Haden, 70.9). As a team, Pittsburgh had a coverage grade of 75.8, ranking 18th in the NFL. In a league where stopping the pass is becoming more important with each passing year, the Steelers need to do better if they want to return to the postseason in 2019 after missing the dance last year. Injecting new talent in the secondary could help do just that, as Layne was outstanding in college.

Layne lined up at outside corner on 713 of his 833 total snaps last season. Considering that help at outside cornerback is precisely what the Steelers need, Layne could be the answer to Pittsburgh’s outside cornerback problem. Standing at 6’2”, Layne has the length needed to hang with the NFL’s big wide receivers, yet he also has the speed to hang with the fast guys as well.

Over the last three college seasons, Layne has earned an elite coverage grade of 91.0 when lined up as an outside corner, which is tied for fifth among the 147 outside cornerbacks with at least 100 targets over that period. Among that same group, Layne also ranks 11th in forced incompletion percentage (20%), 12th in passer rating allowed (66.9 and 19th in catch rate allowed (50.4%).

One trait of a great corner is the ability to limit big plays downfield, and Layne has done just that over the past two seasons. On throws 10-plus yards downfield since 2017, Layne has allowed only 11 receptions out of 49 targets for 259 yards. He has also forced an incompletion on 30.6% of such targets, ranking sixth among this year’s 89 draft-eligible cornerbacks.

As great as he is in coverage, he’s also a good (and willing) run-defender, as his run-defense grade over the past two years (84.2) ranks in the top 20 among cornerbacks. Layne has shown amazing progression throughout his three years in college, as he increased his overall grade by nearly 10.0 points every season. He was our sixth-ranked cornerback in the draft, yet he was the 10th cornerback drafted, making him a steal in our eyes.

Layne is great on the field, but the thing that Steelers fans should probably be most excited about is his confidence. As he said in an interview with Pro Football Focus back in March, “They’re going to get a lockdown corner. They’re going to get a playmaker, a willing tackler.”


https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/pro-justin-layne-can-be-the-answer-to-pittsburghs-outside-cornerback-problem?utm_source=cj&amp;utm_medium=affiliate&amp;utm_cam paign=cjaff&amp;cjevent=f1f9fb8d905111e982cb00e60a1c0e 13

I'm hoping Layne turns out to be a star. While I'm in the minority, I hope Burns finds his confidence and does something with the natural abilities he has.

Ernie
06-16-2019, 04:26 PM
I'm hoping Layne turns out to be a star. While I'm in the minority, I hope Burns finds his confidence and does something with the natural abilities he has.

im with you on burns. ive been reading some positives about him thus far. hopefully he finds his way.

Steel Maniac
06-16-2019, 06:28 PM
We all wish Burns would reach his potential but most don't believe he will anymore. But we all wish he would.