Cameron Heyward: Outlook and Expectations
I thought i would start doing this for the draft picks....give a personal report on the picks, their skills, roles, and expectations for the future.
All along i have viewed Cameron Heyward as the best 3-4 Defensive End prospect in the draft. He is easily one of the top 10 senior prospects and would fall around 10-12 in my overall ratings. He has elite intangibles, bloodlines, size, and commitment to the game. At 6-5 nearly 300 pounds he has both the length and bulk to be a true master of the 5 tech position, one of the hardest positions to play in a 34 defense.
He fell in the draft to slot 31 because other potential 5 techs such as JJ Watt. Cam Jordan, and Muhummad Wilkerson made it somewhat rare class of 34 lineman. All of them are better pass rushers than Heyward, but we already have a player in that mold in hood. What the steelers got here is a replacement for Aaron smith, something i would never have confidence in hood to become. Hood does have better pass rushing skills that have him very well suited for Keisels spot on the right side, making this pick even more perfect.
As a rookie i dont expect him to be anything more than a rotational player by design, but you never know with Smith and Keisels injuries he may get a considerable amount of playing time. Heyward makes the secondary better by a considerable amount, so those of you too concerned with drafting a corner just think about this....a player that benefits from a true 5 tech on the LE spot is the LOLB, so i would expect woodley (or whoever) to truly be much better in this scenerio than if it were hood. Hood has the ability to penetrate and get pressure, Heyward has the ability to stonewall blockers, sustain blocks, and collapse the pocket.
Seriously, a good day to be a steeler fan, lets hope im this excited after rounds 2 and 3