Steelers Safety Minkah Fitzpatrick Open to Playing CB, LB This Season If Needed

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistMay 27, 2020

Pittsburgh Steelers free safety Minkah Fitzpatrick (39) during an NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Dec. 8, 2019, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
Rick Scuteri/Associated Press

Entering his first full season with the Pittsburgh Steelers, Minkah Fitzpatrick is prepared to play whatever defensive role that might be asked of him. 

Speaking to reporters about the 2020 season, Fitzpatrick said "it doesn't matter to me" where he lines up as long as he is helping the Steelers win games.

"I just like going out there making plays and being where I need to be, and last year where I needed to be was in the middle of the field," he said. "It worked out fine. This season, just keep doing what we need to win games. If that's [playing] corner, linebacker, whatever that may be, that's what I'm going to do."

Pittsburgh's in-season trade for Fitzpatrick with the Miami Dolphins was a brilliant move. 

Before the deal, Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald reported Fitzpatrick was unhappy with Miami's coaching staff because it struggled to find a "clear vision" for him, and he felt like the team wasn't putting him in the best position to be an impact player. 

Following the Sept. 16 trade, Fitzpatrick told reporters it was "important to anchor me down" in the secondary because he had to learn a new system. 

"Once I learn the system more, I'll be able to move around a little bit," he said. "It's part of my game. It's one of the reasons they wanted me around."

Pittsburgh's defense doesn't seem to have many holes for Fitzpatrick to cover. Outside linebackers T.J. Watt and Bud Dupree combined for 26 sacks; cornerbacks Joe Haden and Mike Hilton had a combined 28 pass breakups and six interceptions. 

Fitzpatrick earned All-Pro first-team honors last season after recording 57 combined tackles, nine pass breakups and five interceptions as a free safety in 14 games with the Steelers.