2022 for Pittsburgh Steelers safety Damontae Kazee came with its fair share of obstacles.
After sustaining a forearm injury in the preseason finale against the Detroit Lions in August 2022, Kazee was placed on the team's injured reserve list. To make matters work, Kazee was then suspended for a violation of the NFL's substance abuse policy. Kazee would eventually be reactivated to the roster on November 10th, 2022.
Instead of allowing offseason misfortunes to hold him back, Kazee emerged as an integral part of the Steelers defense down the stretch of the season. In his first game back after being activated, he recorded an interception, four tackles, and a pass deflection in their Week 10 victory over the New Orleans Saints. In the nine games Kazee played, the Steelers finished with a 7-2 record. Kazee himself recorded 20 tackles, two passes defended, and two interceptions, while registering a passer rating allowed of 45.5.
In an offseason that has seen veteran cornerback Cam Sutton leave in free agency for the Detroit Lions and the addition of All-Pro veteran Patrick Peterson, the perception of his value is much different than it was a year ago, as he was brought back on a two-year deal.
Even with the small sample size, there is no denying his natural ability to make plays on the field. With the team potentially looking to add anotherdefensive back in the upcoming NFL Draft, his value to the team will remain as high as it has ever been.