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Father’s Day: Joey Porter Sr. beams as son Joey Jr. also thrives as a Steeler

The father and son accomplished a professional athletic rarity: to star and dominate in the same franchise, albeit in different eras

LAS VEGAS — Former Pittsburgh Steelers great Joey Porter Sr. left a permanent mark on fans — and opponents’ bodies — during his illustrious career on the NFL gridiron in the Steel City.

Porter Sr.’s pride as an indelible member of Steeler Nation was amplified exponentially when his son, Joey Porter Jr., was drafted by the same team 24 years after him (the father was drafted in the third round in 1999). Porter Sr. got an early Father’s Day present when Porter Jr. played well enough to make the All-Rookie Team and was nominated for the Rookie of the Year Award for the 2023-24 season.

Even though Porter Sr. earned four Pro Bowl selections and won a Super Bowl with the Steelers, he says his son has already superseded him as a player at the same stages of their careers.

“He does a lot of things better than me,” Porter Sr. said, beaming as he looked over at his son on the red carpet at Super Bowl Week in Las Vegas. 

“And he still has a lot of growth left. So he’s not even near where what they’re gonna see later on,” Porter continued while attending the annual NFL Honors event. “But, like, he’s definitely scratching the surface. I think a lot of good football is ahead of him — just like my best years were to come when I was a rookie.”

Porter Jr., chosen by the Steelers in the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft, has always stored his father’s advice deep within his soul.

“He told me to just always play hard and play with a passion,” Porter Jr. explained. “You know, passion is free. So you never want to put out tape that you’re not happy with. And that’s something he always taught me at a young age. And so it has stuck with me till now.”

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