Robert Golden (born September 13, 1990) is an American football strong safety for the Pittsburgh Steelers of the National Football League (NFL). He was signed by the Steelers as an undrafted free agent in 2012. He played college football at Arizona. He was named a special teams co-captain along with Shaun Suisham for the 2014 season.
He attended Edison High School in Fresno, California. He was named to the Tacoma News Tribune Western 100. He was selected to the 2007 PrepStar Dream Team. He was selected to the Second-team all-state by CalHiSports and was named to the All-Valley first-team. He was selected to the MaxPreps Division II All-State first team. He participated in the U.S. Army All-American game.
Coming out of Edison as a 4-star recruit, Golden received multiple offers including UCLA, USC, Oregon State, and Oregon. He decided to begin attending Arizona in 2008. Golden began his first two seasons as a cornerback and was thought to be the heir-apparent to Antoine Cason. Following his sophomore season though, head coach Mike Stoops switched Golden to strong safety.
Golden entered the 2012 NFL Draft after graduating from Arizona. Although he attended the NFL combine and worked out at Arizona's Pro Day, he went undrafted.
|Ht||Wt||40-yd dash||10-yd split||20-yd split||20-ss||3-cone||Vert||Broad||BP|
|5 ft 11 in||201 lb||4.51 s||1.58 s||2.64 s||4.40 s||7.04 s||37 1⁄2 in||9 ft 5 in||19 reps|
|All values from Arizona Pro Day|
On April 29, 2012, Golden was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Pittsburgh Steelers. His contract was for three-years, $1.44 million, a $5,000 signing bonus, and $5,000 guaranteed.
Golden played in his first career game against the Denver Broncos, in the season opener his rookie season. On October 11, 2012, he made his first career tackle in a 23–26 loss to the Tennessee Titans. He finished his first year playing in 15 games and made 6 tackles as a back-up free safety behind long-time Steelers veteran Ryan Clark.
The following year, he began the season opener making 2 solo tackles against the Titans. On November 10, 2013, Golden made a season-high 3 tackles in a victory over the Buffalo Bills. In Week 8, he caused his first career forced fumble in an 18–21 loss to the Oakland Raiders. During his second year he played in all 16 games and recorded 14 total tackles as the Steelers finished 8–8 for the second consecutive season.
He opened the 2014 season as a back-up to new free safety Will Allen, after Clark's departure during the off-season. Golden also played in his first career playoff game during the Steelers' 17–30 loss to the Ravens in the wild card game. He finished his season playing in all regular season games and finished with 10 tackles, with 5 being solo.
On March 9, 2015, he was signed as a restricted free-agent to a one-year deal worth $1.54 million. On October 18, 2015, he received his first career start after Will Allen was injured the previous game. He ended the game with a career-high 8 total tackles and a pass deflection. He also received the next two starts in place of Allen. During a Week 14 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals, he made his first career interception and returned it for 27 yards.
On March 7, 2016, the Pittsburgh Steelers signed Golden to a three-year, $4.95 million contract with a signing bonus of $1.25 million.
Golden began the 2016 regular season as the Pittsburgh Steeler's starting strong safety after they chose to not resign Will Allen during the off-season. On September 18, 2016, Golden made a career-high nine combined tackles and a pass deflection during a 24-16 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals He started the first nine games of the season but began rotating with rookie Sean Davis against the Baltimore Ravens in Week 9. By Week 11, he had been benched in favor of the rookie Davis during the Steeler's victory over the Cleveland Browns. He was also benched the following game against the Indianapolis Colts.
Golden was raised by his parents, Rolinda and Danny Golden. On July 2, 2016, he married Lechet Bush in Fresno, California.