Share & Comment:

Minkah Fitzpatrick reflects on a “tough” 2023 season

The Pittsburgh Steelers have a wealth of talent at specific positions on their roster, and one of those is at safety. Minkah Fitzpatrick roaming the secondary has struck fear in opposing quarterbacks since 2018. However, the All-Pro safety wasn’t the menace to offenses he typically has been based on being banged up last season.

While Fitzpatrick realizes there will be seasons where injuries are a common thread, it doesn’t make it any easier to have to watch his teammates playing every week.

“It’s part of the game. It was my first year and hopefully my last year where I’ve sat a significant amount of time,” Fitzpatrick told the Steelers official website. “I just tried to embrace it. I tried to still lean from that position, that stance. Even though I wasn’t playing, there were still ways I was trying to get better, whether it be on the field or off the field.

“I just had to embrace it. It’s part of the game, part of our job.”

Considering Fitzpatrick never dealt with a season like 2023 before in his career, it was a challenge for him.

“There were some days that were easy, some days that were tough,” said Fitzpatrick. “Game days were definitely tough.”

Fitzpatrick isn’t one to sit back and just watch his teammates and coaches go about their business. He recognized how important it was for him to stay engaged, and to help as much as possible. In the Steelers home win vs. the Green Bay Packers, it was Fitzpatrick who caught the attention of the coaching staff to get them to call timeout before the final play. The coaches changed the defense, and the result was a game-winning interception of Jordan Love to give the Steelers the win.

“I tried to really stay engaged, not in a sense of being vocal or constantly communicating. But being where my feet are,” said Fitzpatrick. “Paying attention to what is going on around me. Paying attention to the little things. Paying attention to what people in the locker room, in this building say. What they are saying, what they are communicating. Whether it’s subtly or in your face, I was trying to take heed of everything that was going on and trying to correct some things that were being talked about. I had the necessary conversations.

“The reason I recognized I needed to work on it was because I had the opportunity to be still and really see what was going on. When you are in the mix of it, you are game planning and scheming, you can lose sight of all the little details, or you become nose blind to what is going on around you. The fact that I had time to be aware of what was going on is something I want to implement more. I want to make time to be where my feet are. Listen to more of what is going on in the locker room. Listen to what is going on upstairs. It’s something I want to apply moving forward.”

Fitzpatrick’s injury-riddled 2023 is now in the past, and all fans can hope for is for his 2024 season to be a return to the All-Pro status fans have seen since he was acquired via trade from the Miami Dolphins in 2019. Be sure to stay tuned to SCN for the latest news and notes surrounding the Steelers as they prepare for the start of the new league year next week.


Sign up below for the latest news, stories and podcasts from our affiliates

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.