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BREAKING: Penn State football star Joey Porter Jr. picked in 2nd round of NFL Draft

Former Penn State football defensive back Joey Porter Jr. finally heard his name called in the NFL Draft after a first-round snub.

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Joey Porter Jr., Penn State football, NFL Draft
Sep 4, 2021; Madison, Wisconsin, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions cornerback Joey Porter Jr. (9) celebrates following the game against the Wisconsin Badgers at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

After a disappointing opening round, the first Penn State Nittany Lion is finally off the board in the 2023 NFL Draft. On Friday, Joey Porter Jr. was taken by the Pittsburgh Steelers with the first pick in the second round (No. 32 overall). Many felt Porter was snubbed when he didn’t become the first defensive back in Penn State football history taken in the first round of the NFL Draft. But ultimately, Porter still has all the talent needed to have a stellar professional career. 

Despite production for Penn State football, Joey Porter Jr. fell in the NFL Draft

The son of former Pittsburgh Steelers’ legend Joey Porter Sr., Joey Porter Jr. was a 247 composite four-star and the fourth-best prospect in Pennsylvania in the class of 2019. Porter put together an outstanding career in the Blue and White, earning All-Big Ten honors each season between 2020 and 2022. In addition to being named a first-team All-Big Ten selection, Porter was voted a second-team Associated Press All-American last year. All told, Porter finished his Nittany Lion career with 94 total tackles, 19 passes defended, one interception, and one forced fumble.

Despite less-than-stellar testing numbers at the NFL Combine and Penn State’s Pro Day, Porter was still expected to be a solid first-round selection. But as the first round of the NFL Draft wore on, it was clear it wouldn’t be Porter’s historic night. When the evening was over, four other cornerbacks saw their names called before the Penn State Nittany Lion.

JPJ is ready for the next step

But now, Porter has his NFL home. Although many expected the Steelers to take Porter in the first round, it was a shrewd bit of draft calculus by Pittsburgh to trade up and select Georgia tackle Broderick Jones, leaving Porter for round two. With his selection, Porter joins fellow Nittany Lions Dan Chisena, Pat Freiermuth, and Allen Robinson on the Steelers’ roster.

Overall, Porter is an extremely smart and physical corner who’s poised for a long and successful NFL career. If he continues to ascend in the NFL the same way he did in Happy Valley, then Joey Porter Jr. is a name Penn State fans will hear on TV broadcasts in the fall for many years to come.



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A third-generation Penn Stater, Matt is Editor-in-Chief for Basic Blues Nation, co-host of the podcast PSU Tailgate Talk, and a credentialed member of the Penn State football media. Matt also works as a staffer in the Pennsylvania General Assembly. Matt lives in central Pennsylvania with his wife and a small army of pets.

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