What if I told you that, statistically, Jordan Berry is one of the, if not, the best punter that the Pittsburgh Steelers have ever had?
His average net yardage on punts is 39.9 yards since he became the Steelers punter back in 2015, which is the highest out of any Steelers punter since 1976 (the year average net yardage in punts began to be calculated). Berry holds the record for longest punt in Steelers history with a 79-yard boot in his rookie season back in 2015. He has also put 154 punts inside the 20, second only to Josh Miller. Bobby Walden and Miller both have a case, but Berry, believe it or not, has some of the best numbers of any Steelers punter ever.
By no means are his numbers mind blowing. The position of punter has not truly provided the Steelers with game-changing ability in some time now. That is why the Steelers used a seventh round draft on Pressley Harvin III in the 2021 NFL Draft. To put into perspective how good this kid can be, Berry has a gross average of 44.4 yards per punt since becoming a Steeler. Harvin’s last season at Georgia Tech was 48.0.
The Steelers have almost never addressed the position in the draft. Daniel Sepulveda was an exception to that in 2007 when Kevin Colbert selected him in the fourth round. Injuries derailed his career and he never fulfilled his full potential. The hope is Harvin can be the answer that the Steelers have been looking for.
Many people have analyzed the Steelers first preseason game of the season vs. the Dallas Cowboys and Harvin has been at the forefront of conversation, as he should be. He punted four times averaging 45.8 yards and put three of them inside the 20 including a thing of beauty pinning the Cowboys at the one-yard line with 2:00 left in the first half. Those kinds of punts have the opportunity to be game-changing for the Steelers this season. A short field for the offense and a long field for the opponent will lead to winning games. It is no secret that the Steelers schedule is difficult this season and field position will make all the difference.
This is by no means a knock on Berry. He was never the best punter in the league or could find a way to pin opponents inside the five-yard line, but he provided stability, and throughout his time, only had one punt blocked. This is more excitement towards Harvin’s potential.
Harvin played high school football in South Carolina before traveling to Georgia Tech for college. It will be interesting to see how he handles playing in Pittsburgh and up north during the winter months. It becomes a lot different when rain, snow and freezing hands are brought into the mix.
We received a small sample size of what is to come for the Steelers punting unit in the Hall of Fame Game and it seems as if the guard is changing. Thank you to Berry for his years in the black and gold, but the future is now and his name is Pressley Harvin III. I can’t wait to watch this 263 pound beast punt balls into the atmosphere. Okay, maybe that’s a little much, but let me get excited here. I’ve been waiting for a Pro Bowl caliber punter for years and I think he now may be here.
What did you make out of Harvin’s NFL debut? Let us know in the comments below!