As is customary on SteelerAddicts, one of our draft guru’s, K Train has put out his initial Steelers mock for this years’ upcoming draft. Things will certainly be tweaked in the coming weeks’ as players stock rises and drops from their pro days and the combine but to start things off here at the end of January let’s see what he’s come up with…
Rounds 1 and 2 listed below. Click the link at the end to head over the forums and read the rest.
Here’s my first mock of the year, I have my pick and then several alternate picks…this early in the process this might look like a jumble of names and that’s because it is. I like to explain and try to justify the pick and I will briefly do the same with the alt picks.
You can hate on it, just tell me why or I’m going to be a dick. I like everyone’s input, but if you look back on these threads guys like Timmons, Sepulveda, Pouncey, Sweed, Gilbert, C. Brown, Heyward (2011 was a good year for me), Dwyer, Thad Gibson, Decastro, Mike Adams, Taamu, and Paulson all were on one of my 3 mocks a year at one point or another….I’m just on fire the last few years. But the alts are really intended to be guys to watch on the rise and fall over the next few months.
1) Manti Te’o MLB Notre Dame (dream pick is Jarvis Jones (dream pick last year was David Decastro*))
Barkevious Mingo, Eifert, Dion Jordon, David Amerson, Keenan Allen, Eric Reid
A ton of Notre Dame Haters on the board, I get it I really do. They give themselves an easy independent schedule, they turn 90% of Catholics into the biggest football fans when they are doing good, they get overrated because of the massive audience they bring in, and they are always on TV….trust me, I hate them too. But let’s be real people, none of that is Manti Teos fault. Can’t let allegiance to a school skew your views of a player when he goes pro, and Teo is a damn fine linebacker even if he makes up girls.
He reminds me a lot of James Farrior but he’s much bigger, he could play 7 LB positions, has incredible instincts, and has legit sideline to sideline range. He has the size to take on guards and room to get bigger to become even better against the run but the man can a guard on one on one or shoot a gap with the best of them. He had a bad game in the NC, against some great talent…we need to look past that to an extent. The body of work he compiled speaks well beyond one game where the Irish were simply out classed on the field and on the sideline. I maintain he’s the best LB since Willis….that’s better than hawk, McClain, Rivers, Timmons, Bowman, Maualuga, Lauranitis, Kuechly, Cushing, Matthews, Lee, spikes, Hightower, Jackson, Simms, Beason and any other guy you can come back at me with…Teo is a better prospect.
He would lead the defense, he would create turnovers, stuff the run, blitz, rush the passer, and IMO most importantly…cover TEs.
Mingo and Jordon are both insane athletes, and honestly not usually what he look for in an OLB but it may be time to break that mold. With Hampton out and Heyward likely getting MANY more snaps on defense I’m not sure we need a stud OLB against the run, even with hood in and Aaron smith out we posted the #1 run defense and hood is truly the worst starter we have on either side of the ball. We usually go for shorter, stockier and most importantly powerful OLBs, but these guys are dazzling athletes that are born the chase down QBs….Jordon is better, but Mingo has some scary potential too. Mingo scares me though too in that he reminds me a TON of Aaron Maybin, who was sooo explosive and had such a vicious first step but was a liability against the run.
Eifert is an excellent talent, so is Ertz, his only real competition to be anythng worth a damn at TE this year. He would ultimately replace miller but I think Haley would love him as he could play in the slot or out wide even once miller is rehabbed. He’s better than Rudolph and Carlson, and I LOVE Rudolph
I hate Amerson as a CB, but I feel all tingly inside thinking of him as a FS…he’s a pick machine, and not by accident, his ball skills are elite. He can run, he can catch, and he can lay the boom. He would be an excellent conversion guy.
Keenan Allen is really the only WR I have interest in using a first round pick on…wouldn’t hate it at all, but really the team could be poised to make a run at Bowe….not by any means a typical Steeler move, but Bowe would be a great Steeler, especially under Haley. Who knows, the FO might think it’s time to move some things around and make that splash move they make once a decade.
2) Travis Frederick OG Wisconsin
Matt Elam, Xavier Rhodes, TJ McDonald, Chase Thomas, Shayne Skov, Justin Hunter
I LOVE Frederick as a guard, he fell off a bit this year moving to center to replace Konz, but he’s a beastly guard (I actually have him ranked #1 among guards, and I’m a HUGE fan are warmack) and if they landed him to play LG I’d make a bet with anyone that out of Mike Adams, Travis Frederick, Pouncey, Decastro, and Gilbert we end up with a hall of famer coming out of that line.
Matt Elam would be an excellent FS, he really plays all out and can do everything, including playing corner and covering man to man. Not afraid to stick his nose in the run game either and has a knack for creating turnovers.
Xavier Rhodes is a guy I love seeing fall off the map, loved him 2 years ago…thought he was a Nnamdi clone, and that hasn’t changed. He is excellent in press man coverage, has good hips, good ball skills and ridiculously long arms. More to come on Rhodes in the next few weeks.
Chase Thomas is a high effort pass rusher that could be a 2nd/3rd round steal in the right system. I love him as a pass rusher, not quite clay Matthews as far as white OLBs go but definitely better than Barwin, Kruger, Brooks Reed ect were coming out IMO
Skov is a guy I think I’d really like in the middle too, nothing flashy but does his job and can take on guards….would be an upgrade over Foote, who really actually has come into his own lately but by no means is irreplaceable.
Justin Hunter is next on my list after Keenan Allen as a moderately “big” WR that been clearly wants and really kind of needs with the smurfs we have running around. Hess just not the precise passer that can deal with this quick little guys and that’s it, he thrives with the big WRs and TEs which opens up so much for littler guys like brown and sanders.