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New Steelers safety Marcus Allen gets guidance from godfather Curtis Martin

Chris Adamski
| Friday, May 11, 2018, 5:30 p.m.
Steelers fifth-round pick Marcus Allen practices during rookie minicamp Friday, May 11, 2018, at UPMC Rooney Sports Complex.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Steelers fifth-round pick Marcus Allen practices during rookie minicamp Friday, May 11, 2018, at UPMC Rooney Sports Complex.

Joining an NFL team can be an overwhelming feeling for a rookie. Luckily for Penn State alum Marcus Allen, he has quite the mentor to lean on.

A safety and fifth-round pick of the Steelers, Allen's godfather is former Pitt and New York Jets star running back Curtis Martin.

"You've got a Hall of Famer as your godfather," Allen said Friday after the first Steelers rookie minicamp session, "so him telling you the T's and everything, it's just great to have him in my corner."

Allen said he recently shared a meal and "great conversation" with Martin in New York. But now that he's arrived in Pittsburgh, the longtime Steelers fan's focus is on his craft.

The 6-foot-2 Allen was roaming the defensive backfield at UPMC Rooney Sports Complex for the first time Friday, sharing playcalling duties with first-rounder and fellow rookie safety Terrell Edmunds.

"It's a blessing," Allen said on the field after the session. "I have been dreaming about this all my life, and to really be out here living my dream, it's unbelievable."

The NFL might have been Allen's dream — and playing for the Steelers, even moreso. (Allen's father is a Pittsburgh native.) But being a third-day draft choice wasn't part of that dream. Allen was projected to go higher by most outlets, and his current situation is similar to how he arrived at Penn State as a lightly heralded three-star recruit.

Allen was a starter during his freshman 2014 season and a consensus all-Big Ten freshman.

"I always have a chip on my shoulder. Always," Allen said. "It's a lot, having this big boulder on my back, my shoulders, ever since I was in Little League, so there's never a day I don't have a chip on my shoulder."

Chris Adamski is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at or via Twitter @C_AdamskiTrib.

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