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Joey Porter Jr. drafted by Pittsburgh Steelers as top second-round pick, 24 years after they picked his father

<i>Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire/Getty Images</i><br/>Joey Porter Jr. was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers as the top second-round pick.
Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire/Getty Images
Joey Porter Jr. was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers as the top second-round pick.

By Issy Ronald, CNN

Getting drafted is a special moment for any player, but there was added significance for Joey Porter Jr. as he was picked by the Pittsburgh Steelers, the team that selected his father 24 years ago.

The Steelers drafted Porter Jr. as the top second-round pick and No.32 overall after the Penn State cornerback impressed this season with his defensive capabilities.

His father, Joey Porter, was a linebacker for the Steelers for eight years, part of the 2005 Super Bowl-winning team and a four-time Pro Bowler, before he coached under Mike Tomlin for five seasons.

“I understand what my dad did and I understand his legacy,” Porter Jr. said in his press conference. “I’m trying to add on to the family legacy, there’s going to be some up and downs with that but I’m ready.”

And Porter Jr. has displayed his own abilities this season, not allowing a single touchdown and conceding just one plus-15 yards play, according to Pro Football Focus.

During his four seasons at Penn State, meanwhile, he has generated 114 tackles, defended 21 passes and won an interception in 35 games.

“People were coming in to see him because he was a good player, not because of who his dad was,” defensive coordinator Teryl Austin said, according to the Steelers’ website.

“I think he understood that right from the beginning and he handled it like a true professional, like what you want to see these guys do when they go through this process. And that’s part of the process, seeing how the guys handle things…There wasn’t a bad word to be said about the young man. And so, we feel really, really comfortable in terms of that.”

After he wasn’t picked in the first round like many had anticipated, Porter Jr. said that he watched the draft with his parents before making the short drive down to the Steelers’ training facility where he held his press conference.

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