Originally written on 60 Max Power O  |  Last updated 11/20/14

This Pittsburgh Steelers training camp will feature some interesting position battles along the offensive and defensive lines, linebacker, running back and cornerback. While there are starting positions up for grabs, there are also some exciting battles for back up and special teams spots, especially in the secondary.The Steelers have usually carried 10 defensive backs on the active roster, this season they may have to reduce that number to nine to compensate for depth at other positions. If it is nine defensive backs, one slot should stay open. While it is impossible to predict how players will perform in pads, it should be an interesting battle for these spots once training camp opens. One player that may have a leg up early in the process is rookie seventh round selection (in the 2012 NFL Draft) Terrence Frederick from Texas A&M.

Yes, he is not the most physically gifted cornerback on the roster, the 5-10, 186 pound Frederick, looks like a slot corner in the Steelers 3-4 alignment as he projects as a more quick than fast cerebral defensive back, who will mix it up in the run game. Timed at a 4.54 40-yard dash at the combine, he has enough straight-line speed, but looks more comfortable in zone than man coverage and has the look of a short-area cornerback in the mold of William Gay (who had a similar scouting report when leaving college).

Another cornerback who fits the mold of a potential slot corner is undrafted rookie free agent Terry Carter from Louisiana Tech. Carter has good size to play in the slot (5-10, 184 pounds) and has solid but not great speed (4.57 40-yard dash). Not a household name, Carter was a first-team all-conference selection in 2011 and was the most consistent member of the Louisiana Tech secondary.

It will be interesting to see this position battle play out throughout training camp, as both he and Frederick are roughly the same size with the same measurables, meaning it may come down to special teams performance for one or both to make the club.


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