Penn State Football

Penn State Football: From Joey Porter Jr. to Sean Clifford, ranking Nittany Lions NFL Draft Fits

Now that the 2023 NFL draft is over and six former Penn State Football players have been drafted, it’s time to rank the fit for each of the newly drafted players on their new teams.

The Nittany Lions’ didn’t have a first-round pick, but days two and three of the draft were full of former Penn State stars coming off the board.

Ranking how all 6 Penn State Football Players Fit with Their NFL teams:

6. Parker Washington, Jacksonville Jaguars

Someone had to be last on this list, and here I have Parker Washington.

This is less to do with Parker Washington’s fit in Jacksonville’s system but instead with Jacksonville’s wide receiver room. The Jaguars return Christian Kirk and Zay Jones, the Jaguar’s top two receivers from last season, while bringing in Calvin Ridley fresh off a year suspension.

Even if Washington dazzles throughout camp, he still has a huge fight against much more experienced receivers for targets.

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5. Brenton Strange, Jacksonville Jaguars

Once again, this has less to do with Brenton Strange’s fit in the Jaguars system and more to do with the depth chart.

Jacksonville brings back Evan Engram who was targeted 98 times last season. The six-year veteran is almost certainly going to remain the starter in 2023.

After Engram, Strange will have his shot to be TE2 with a good camp and fight for targets in 2023.

4. Juice Scruggs, Houston Texans

Juice Scruggs surprised fans with his selection in the second-round this weekend.

Thought to be a mid-round pick, Scruggs was “speechless” with his second round selection. General manager of the Houston Texans, Nick Caserio has mentioned that there will be a “competition” to sort out where Scruggs fits.

With Scruggs’ ability to play multiple positions on the offensive line, he should have the ability to carve out a place for himself on Houston’s roster and push for a starting position, whether at center or one of the two guard positions.

3. Ji’Ayir Brown, San Francisco 49ers

Ji’Ayir Brown’s selection represented a significant commitment for San Francisco, as the 49ers traded three picks to move up to grab the former Penn State safety.

Daniel Jeremiah had Brown as the top safety in the draft, and the 49ers got a steal in the third round.

San Francisco had a glaring hole at safety going into the draft. In San Francisco, Brown can compete to be the starting safety beside Talanoa Hufangea.

2. Sean Clifford, Green Bay Packers

Sean Clifford stepped into a fantastic position after being selected by the Green Bay Packers in the fifth round this weekend.

With Aaron Rodgers officially traded to the New York Jets, the Packers have a wide-open quarterback room. If Jordan Love struggles as the new starter, Sean Clifford can be in prime position to get a shot as an NFL starter. For a player that many projected to go undrafted, that is a dream scenario.

1. Joey Porter Jr., Pittsburgh Steelers

Is there a better fit than Joey Porter Jr. in Pittsburgh?

Porter Jr. gets to step into the black and gold that his dad played in for 7 seasons and won a Super Bowl with in 2005.

Additionally, Pittsburgh is a cornerback needy team where Porter Jr. can compete to be a day 1 starter. Overall, Porter Jr. made too much sense for Pittsburgh and should be a fan favorite in black and gold for years to come.

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Robert Casturo

Expertise: College Football, Penn State Football Education: Saint Vincent College, Penn State Law School Location: Washington, DC Experience: Robert Casturo has covered Penn State football for NittanyCentral since 2022. Casturo previously covered Penn State football through a social media presence (@PSU_FB_Thoughts on X) since 2019. Casturo earned his bachelor's degree from Saint Vincent College in 2015, where he was a punter for 1 season on the Saint Vincent College football team and worked in the athletic department for 2 years as a student manager. Casturo earned his JD from Penn State Law in 2018 where he was a senior editor of the Penn State Law Review.