If the Pittsburgh Steelers’ philosophy of the last decade holds true in 2023, Patrick Peterson will serve as the Steelers’ left cornerback while Levi Wallace will flip over to the right side, replacing the departed Cam Sutton.
Speaking to reporters Wednesday, Peterson said he’s currently working as first-team left cornerback.
“As of right now, I’m left corner,” he said via the team website.
Which logically would mean, and reported by The Tribune-Review‘s Joe Rutter, Levi Wallace flipped over to right cornerback.
For Peterson, he’s playing where he aligned a majority of the time last season. Per PFF’s charting, Peterson logged 920 snaps at left cornerback last season compared to just 167. But it’s worth pointing out Peterson began to flip sides later in the season. From Week One to Week 10, he played 100% of his outside corner snaps on the left. From Week 11 through the rest of the season, he saw more of a split and over his final five games (Wild Card game included), he spent more time on the right side.
Per our own charting, of Wallace’s 695 outside cornerback snaps last season, 583 (83.9%) of them came on the left side. Now, it sounds like he’s flipping to fill the void left by Cam Sutton, who signed a three-year deal with the Detroit Lions. Sutton logged 652 right cornerback snaps last season.
After Peterson signed, he often mentioned the coaching staff looking to move him around the Steelers’ defense. While those talks are ongoing, it hasn’t yet been implemented.
“There have been talks. Coach wants to obviously use me in a bunch of different positions that we haven’t really hit on any of those topics just yet,” he said. “But I’m sure in the near future, we’ll start talking about those things. Especially as we get into the thick of training camp.”
Through just two days of OTA with the defense still being installed, it’s no surprise to see the Steelers ease Peterson into something more comfortable and natural before adding layers. He has been an outside corner for nearly all of his long, 12-year career prior to signing with Pittsburgh. How much he moves around in a Steelers defense that will look substantially different in 2023 will be one of the many things to note when we get to training camp this summer.