2015 Steelers NFL Mock Draft: 7 Rounds v16.0

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Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

The Steelers need to seriously upgrade their secondary through the upcoming draft. Standing pat during free agency cost them Brice McCain, and the top three cornerbacks on their depth chart are William Gay, Cortez Allen and Antwon Blake. Gay is in the final year of his deal, Allen was ridiculously erratic last fall and Blake could be a free agent next spring as well.

Acquiring depth to bolster one of their weakest positional units on their roster must be a strategy which Pittsburgh’s front office employs, and I can see them using at least one early round draft choice on a cornerback. Doran Grant of Ohio State possesses a skill-set which the Steelers’ coaching staff value in their cornerbacks, and he could be a viable choice on the draft’s second day.

In 2013, his first as a starter, Grant and future first round choice Bradley Roby (58 tackles, 10 PDs, 3 INTs) were one of the Big 10’s best cornerback duos. This fall, with Roby gone, Grant put up similar numbers (63 tackles, 14 PDs, 5 INTs) and led the way in the Buckeyes’ National Championship secondary.

While he doesn’t overly impress in one particular area, Grant has the frame (5’10” 200 lbs.), straight-line speed, strength and ability to change direction to be a starter at the professional level. Grant’s tackling skills and knack to break on balls would make him a nice fit in a zone-based or off-man defensive scheme like Pittsburgh’s.

While Grant can sometimes peek in backfield, take poor tackling angles and might be called upon to play more man-based coverage at the professional level, he would represent terrific value in the third round for a team like the Steelers. Pittsburgh seems to always be in the market for a Buckeye during draft weekend, and Grant could be a logical choice on the event’s second day this year.

Next: Round 4