What if one of the top LT fall into our laps much like DeCastro did a few years back? Do we nab them?
And yes, it would have to be one of the strong considerations... As much as I want to believe that munchak is going to polish up all our rough stones, I don't think we'd be able to pass
Lewan looked incredible at the combine
Return of the Banana
I want a WR Evans hopefully or a CB Dennard if those two are not on the board, i'll take Mosley
I agree with all of ya, Evans at WR but we are forgetting one other WR that could fall to us at 15 Benjamin from FSU. If he's there I take him at 15. Safety is good at 15 but id rather go CB, because this years draft is soooo deep that we can get a safety later too and he be a good one. But I will say this while you guys say Mosley, yes i see him falling but a guy for some reason. If he falls to 15 Khalil Mack if he falls to 15 we TAKE HIM!! Take him and get rid of Woodley, than try and sign D. Jackson who just got cut by Cleveland oh boy could you imagine that linebacking crew, Jones, Jackson, Timmons, Mack. Dream land i know but that would be sweet. But this year really Colbert and them can't miss if they do, lets not put that past them. If they miss on the pick in this draft watch out Colbert needs to go!
Don't need to take a safety at # 15 overall. Gzzzzzz. That position can be filled later in the draft.
If Gilbert falls to us, it's going to be some tough decisions that will have to be made in that war room. I'd love to sit in and just observe and see what are their determining factors on how they make the final call.
The Steeler way...is the only way.
The first round is so deep, picking #15, is like picking #8 last year. The Steelers have a lot of key needs, and there are a lot of potential players available that fill those needs. First, let's take a handful of players off the board who either play positions I am sure we won't draft (QB), I am sure will be off the board (elite top 5ish guys), or don't fit schematically (43DT).
Off the board:
QB : Manziel, Bortles, Bridgewater
DT43 : Donald
OT: Robinson, Matthews
So with those 12 players off the board... who am I interested in and why?
First, let's discuss needs
Easily our most "dire" need at this time. Simply because we literally have no one on the roster that plays the position. We drafted Shamarko Thomas last year, but he is the heir apparent to Troy as a Strong in the box Safety. The only 2 players to take significant snaps at FS over the last 3 seasons for the Steelers were Ryan Clark and Will Allen (both UFA). I do expect we will do something in free agency to address the position, but it's not like we are going to sign Jairus Byrd
Wide Receiver Big
The front office has literally come out and said, "Ben wants a big receiver, and we are going to draft one for him". We have a Pro Bowl all around WR in Brown. But after that we have almost nothing. Wheaton had a disappointing year, but should get his shot in the slot this year. Cotchery had an incredible year, but he's UFA. Sanders is UFA, and gone... We haven't had an impact "Big", since Ben's rookie year with Plaxico.
Losing Keenan Lewis was a huge blow, in the present and long term. Ike Taylor is either cut, or taking a massive pay cut, and either moving to FS or moving into a backup/sub package role. William Gay played surprisingly well, but he's not cut out for taking on #1s... and Cortez Allen did not have the growth necessary to hang on to the starting role. I still believe in Allen, but a big time Corner would be more than welcome.
Cameron Heyward came on STRONG last year. He played the best at the position since Aaron Smith was in his prime next to Joey Porter. But Ziggy Bust Hood is UFA. So is Al Woods. And their is only a 7th rounder and UDFA on the roster right now, with a starter spot open. Again, this should be a position addressed in free agency... but until then.
Steve McLendon played well. The position could be upgraded if that's the best option available, but more than likely developmental depth is what is needed. McClendon is signed for 2 more years on the cheap.
Foote is a potential cut. Vince Williams was pretty ordinary, but what could you expect from a 6th round rookie. Sean Spence is supposedly ready to make a comeback after 2 years on IR. Not the ideal area to invest valuable draft picks, but if the value was right...
Our Oline is stacked with youth. Our Guard tandem came into it's own last year, and we have 3 young tackles that I am excited to see finally get to work with an elite oline coach (munchak). I don't see any picks getting invested in Oline, UNLESS one of those elite tackles falls in our lap.
Bell is going to be the horse. But a Change of Pace type of back to threaten the field with speed/receiving is something we may look at later in the draft.
Not a need position, but definitely potentially in need of a talent upgrade.
HaHa Clinton-Dix (#15)
Jimmie Ward (trade down 1st, trade up 2nd)
I'm definitely interested. As much as that Big WR is my true desire, I can't ignore how dire a need a coverage FS is. HaHa was the lone "1st round safety talent" throughout most of the college season, and I think that has led to many discounting him as the top talent that he is. I like Jimmie Ward A LOT (I like Pryor a lot too, but don't think he fits our need). But Ward doesn't come with the resume, experience, and production against talent that HaHa does. If we went in a different direction with our 1st (say WR), I'd be all about trading up from our 2nd to get Ward as high as needed. But I don't think he has #15 overall value, the way an experience and more proven HaHa does.
Mike Evans (#15)
I'm kind of hoping he gets drafted before our pick. I like him, but I don't. lol. I worry about the one dimensional nature of his game, and whether that ends up being worth a top 15 pick. I wouldn't mind if we take him, for sure, giving Ben that type of target would fill a need. I simply prefer a few other guys from a scheme/fit perspective
Kelvin Benjamin (#15)
Yea, Him. I want him. That route he ran for the game winning TD in the NCG.... Dawyne Bowe put up like 10 TDs on that route in Haley's offense. Boldin had like 20 TDs over 2 years running that inside stick. haha yea, im exaggerating a bit, but you get the point. Benjamin is a fit for the offense, he fits the need, he fits what Ben wants. Yes, he's raw... and their is a potential bust factor... but his ceiling is through the roof. He is an ELITE talent, he just needs to be groomed and coached up. He can threaten deep, and work inside. He is powerful and smooth. Mike Evans might have Vincent Jackson like potential. A top 10-20 WR... no doubt. But IMO, Benjamin has the talent/potential to be one of the best WRs in the NFL.
Jordan Matthews (trade down 1st)
I think he's the most polished WR in the draft. If he played somewhere else, he'd have a lot more pre combine recognition. IF, the Steelers were looking into a trade down scenario, he would be someone to target in the 20-25 range.
Allen Robinson (2nd)
I did a write up about him towards the end of the college football season. He's definitely polished and has shown NFL skills... but he sure didn't have a good combine. He didn't run well, he didn't look good in drills. If we went Safety in the 1st round, I'd look to trade up for him from our mid 2nd
Donte Moncrief (2nd)
Nobody helped themselves more at the combine (among Wideouts) than Moncrief. Another guy I'd love if we went in a different direction in the 1st, and could get him in the 2nd.
My ideal scenario is WR and FS with our first 2 picks. HaHa + WR, OR WR + Ward
Of course, other players falling, or being the better player available at a need position could change things
The Franchise Corner
The most likely player(s) to change my desire for WR/FS, is if 1 of the 2 top corners falls to us. With his combine, Gilbert is almost assuredly gone. How could he possibly make it past Detroit at #10???? Gilbert is the better fit for our scheme, while Dennard plays the game I prefer. I LOVE Dennard. He didn't work out so well at the combine, but I LOVE him on tape.
If Gilbert fell, I doubt the Steelers would pass. And despite my love of Dennard, I doubt the Steelers take him. I do expect them to invest a 2nd/3rd in a corner. I really like Keith McGill and Jean Stanley Baptiste in that range. Roby had a poor year, but he would be a perfect scheme fit in the 2nd.
It's really simple. Robinson is assuredly gone. But if one of Matthews or Lewan slipped to #15, the value may be too good to pass up. Lewan had an incredible Combine. And those who we slipping him down, down their boards were dumb.
He would fill a lesser need. I can't imagine he'd be BPA on the board. I'd much rather fill this need later in the draft. I kind of have a thing for Chris Borland. He's undersized but plays like hercules.
So with those original 12 off the board:
I would be elated with any of these picks:
Benjamin, Gilbert, HaHa, Dennard, Lewan
And I would be fine with any of these picks:
Evans, Ward, Matthews
Wild Card = Eric Ebron... i don't know what to think yet...
Basically, i love our draft position. I think #15 is a great spot... Sure, we aren't high enough to draft Clowney, Mack, Robinson, or Watkins... but after that, #15 feels like #5
Return of the Banana
When was the last time the Steelers took a corner in the first round of the draft?.......Chad Scott in 97? So I would be surprised if the Steelers took a corner in the first but if some chance Gilbert is there it would be hard to pass on him.......
Right now the first round pick more then likely will be a big WR or safety.......But if they lose Worilds in free agency then pass rusher becomes a huge need......Can't go into next season with just Woodley, Jarvis Jones, Christ Carter at OLB..............
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