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2020 Pittsburgh Steelers Training Camp Preview: Safety

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Last season, the Steelers safeties helped contribute to a defense that collected 25 interceptions good enough for second in the NFL, only behind the New England Patriots.

In 2020, Minkah Fitzpatrick returns at free safety.

Los Angeles Rams v Pittsburgh Steelers
PITTSBURGH, PA - NOVEMBER 10: Minkah Fitzpatrick #39 of the Pittsburgh Steelers celebrates with teammates after recovering a fumble for a 43 yard touchdown during the second quarter against the Los Angeles Rams at Heinz Field on November 10, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)

In Week 9 against Indianapolis, Fitzpatrick returned an interception 96 yards for a touchdown in the Steelers 26-24 victory over the Colts.

With camp set to start this week, here are the safeties on the 90-man roster:

  • Antoine Brooks Jr., Rookie (Maryland)
  • John Battle, 1st Season
  • Tyree Kinnel, 1st Season
  • Marcus Allen, 2nd Season
  • Minkah Fitzpatrick, 3rd Season
  • Terrell Edmunds, 3rd Season
  • Jordan Dangerfield, 4th Season

Projected 'Starter on Sundays': Minkah Fitzpatrick (free safety), Terrell Edmunds (strong safety)

Los Angeles Chargers v Pittsburgh Steelers
PITTSBURGH, PA - DECEMBER 02: Philip Rivers #17 of the Los Angeles Chargers is sacked by Terrell Edmunds #34 of the Pittsburgh Steelers in the first half during the game at Heinz Field on December 2, 2018 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

After coming to Pittsburgh in a Week 3 trade with the Miami Dolphins, Fitzpatrick, the third-year man out of Alabama thrived in Black and Gold. He tallied 44 tackles, five interceptions, and forced two fumbles. He also accounted for the Steelers only pick-six of 2019. The free safety position is in good hands, to say the least.

Terrell Edmunds also enters his third season in the league, and third with the Steelers. He's seen time in all 32 games since being selected by 28th overall in 2018. Edmunds boasted a season-high 10 tackles against his brother Tremaine's Buffalo Bills in Week 16.

Edmunds will likely share time with Dangerfield, but will likely get the starting spot after finishing with 71 tackles, falling one short of the team-high held by Devin Bush.

Reserves: Marcus Allen (free safety), Jordan Dangerfield (strong safety)

Dangerfield spent time in the line-up, sharing snaps with Edmunds. In three seasons, he's stepped onto the field in 46 games. Last season, he forced a fumble in the Week 9 win against Indianapolis.

Pittsburgh Steelers v Los Angeles Chargers
CARSON, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 13: Defensive back Jordan Dangerfield #37 of the Pittsburgh Steelers reacts during the fourth quarter against the Los Angeles Chargers at Dignity Health Sports Park on October 13, 2019 in Carson, California. (Photo by Katharine Lotze/Getty Images)

Dangerfield will be the primary back-up at safety.

Pittsburgh Steelers v Carolina Panthers
CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA - AUGUST 29: Marcus Allen #27 of the Pittsburgh Steelers tackles Reggie Bonnafon #39 of the Carolina Panthers during their preseason game at Bank of America Stadium on August 29, 2019 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Allen saw action once last season backing up the talented Fitzpatrick. He'll look to remain a reliable asset who can come off the sideline in a pinch.

Battling for a Spot: Antoine Brooks Jr. (safety)

Due to an unconventional off-season, rookie Antoine Brooks Jr. announced he signed his first NFL contract with the Steelers last Wednesday on Instagram. Brooks Jr., the sixth-round draft pick, was named second-team All-Big Ten in 2018 and 2019 as a safety and linebacker at the University of Maryland.

Brooks Jr. should break the 53-man roster but could be used in a variety of roles as a result of his versatility.

More Steelers Training Camp Previews:

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