Steelers Tried To Get C.J. Goodwin To Convert To CB In 2015

Remember C.J. Goodwin? He’s now a cornerback with the Atlanta Falcons but a few years ago, he was a wide receiver with the Pittsburgh Steelers. He originally signed with the Steelers in June of 2014 after being given a tryout thanks to the urging of Hall of Fame cornerback Mel Blount.

Goodwin spent his entire rookie season on the Steelers practice squad and was ultimately signed to a futures contract in 2015. After failing to make the Steelers final 53-man roster in 2015, Goodwin was waived. He stayed unemployed until November when he was signed to the Atlanta Falcons practice squad and his position switch evidently began not long after that at the urging of Falcons defensive backs coach Marquand Manuel.

As it turns out, the Steelers tried to convert Goodwin to a cornerback prior to waiving him in 2015.

“We had C.J. Goodwin here a number of years ago as a wide receiver, and we approached him about playing defensive back,” Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin revealed on Saturday during an interview with Bob Labriola of “He was initially resistant, maybe fearful of it. Not a lot of exposure to the position, and so it was funny watching Atlanta in the last Super Bowl and seeing C.J. lining up and playing cornerback on the biggest stage.”

Last season, Goodwin played in 14 regular season games with the Falcons as a cornerback and even made one start. He also played in all three of the Falcons playoff games last year. In the Super Bowl, he registered three total tackles and a pass defensed. In this years Falcons regular season opener, Goodwin also played and he figures to play Sunday night against the Green Bay Packers.

It’s too bad the Steelers couldn’t get Goodwin to switch positions while he was with them as the team sure could have used his services on that side of football last season. At the very least, at least we now know that they did indeed try to get California, PA product to switch positions.

  • Steelers12

    just wondering how do you know which WR’s has the skillsets to switch to CB? like could Limas Sweed could of switch due to his size & speed?

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    I love Mike Tomlin. He gives some of the best interview responses of any coach in the league.

    Notice the subtle jabs he takes at Goodwin… “We approached him about playing defensive back. He was initially resistant, maybe FEARFUL of it. So it was FUNNY watching Atlanta in the last Super Bowl and seeing C.J. lining up and playing cornerback on the biggest stage.”

    To be clear, I don’t think Tomlin is losing any sleep at all over C.J. Goodwin. I think he’s just busting his chops a little. Like when you offer your buddy a beer and he makes a big deal saying, “No I don’t drink.” And then a few weeks later you see him on TV, pounding shots at a huge party. And you’re like, Hmmmm. That’s FUNNY.

  • Steelers12


  • Michael Conrad

    I don’t think it was a jab at C J Goodwin as much as saying. The Steelers coaches saw the same thing that he could be a DB with his speed and agility.

    Tomlin knows the real football fans . The ones who watch more then the Steelers. Will see C J Goodwin playing CB for Atlanta and know he was a Steeler at one time. I think its great that Tomlin and the coaches though Goodwin could play CB. Shows they are on the ball.

    Look what they did with AV.

  • Talyn Scarbrough

    Are there any statistics that we can get regarding teams and position changes? I mean I mainly follow the Steelers but I try to keep up with all teams.

    I’m just wondering if the Steelers are one of the teams that do this more commonly.

    I agree the Steelers staff is one of the best in the game, sure we still have our flops but so does every team.

  • Talyn Scarbrough

    I think quickness and change of direction ability would be more important than straight line speed because as a cover guy you are reactive (i.e mirror the receiver) .

  • Shannon Stephenson

    It is funny how a little desperation will make a person do what they initially did not want to do.

  • dany

    Funny, Marquand Manuel got injured in the super bowl against the steelers and he converted a former steelers player into a defensive back, he ended up playing in the super bowl

  • LucasY59

    instead they drafted a similar project in Brian Allen (who I hope turns out to be better than Goodwin) good to have a bigger corner with WR ball skills