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Kenny Pickett appeared in 13 games for the Pittsburgh Steelers as a rookie a season ago. In those 13 games, the former Pitt standout was knocked down 32 times and sacked on 27 occasions. While his 32 knockdowns didn’t come anywhere close to the most in the NFL last season, getting knocked down 32 times in the NFL isn’t exactly an enjoyable experience.
One of those 32 times still lingers in Pickett’s mind, too.
During his recent appearance on the ‘Green Light’ podcast, former defensive end Chris Long asked Pickett if he could remember the hardest hit he experienced during his rookie campaign. Without hesitation, New York Jets’ defensive tackled Quinnen Williams came to mind.
“Quinnen Williams. Easy answer,” Pickett explained. “Against the Jets, I came in, and I think they ran a stunt or something, and he came in and got me right under the chin. And I got up laughing. I’ve never been hit that hard in my life.”
Hey, at least Pickett laughed about the hardest hit he’d ever taken on the football field. It probably helped that he completed the pass on the specific play Williams delivered the boom stick.
It’s worth remembering that the Steelers QB has suffered concussions during his career, but none of those seem to compare to the knock Williams handed him, however.
Williams had himself a season last year and got his hands on plenty other quarterbacks around the league. After picking up 12 sacks last season, Williams was rewarded with a four-year contract extension worth $96 million.
Kenny Pickett won’t have to worry about Williams this year, at least not in the regular season, thanks to the Jets and Steelers not scheduled to play one another.
Follow Mark Harris on Twitter @ItIsMarkHarris