NFL Draft: Steelers’ Day Two Grade


The Steelers continued to address both need and talent as the NFL Draft continued tonight. After they solidified their outside line backer position in round one, the Steelers went defensive back in round two.

Senquez Golson of Ole Miss was the second player taken by the Steelers. Cornerback was considered by many to be the biggest need this offseason. With the departure of Ike Taylor and the underperformance of others on the roster, Golson has the opportunity to get right in the action.

He might be a bit undersized, but that is the reason a cornerback with his quickness and ball skills was even available when the Steelers picked in the second round. In his college career, Golson displayed an uncanny ability to make plays on the ball. He finished his final year with ten interceptions.

After watching Ike Taylor drop nearly every ball that came his way, Steelers fans would appreciate a cornerback that can catch the ball.

Golson might not have the size to be dominant on the outside, but given his football intelligence and tendency to make plays, I give this pick a “B+” grade. There is upside if Golson can become more than an inside slot corner, but the value isn’t really there in the second round if he can’t.

With their third round pick the Steelers selected Sammie Coates a wide receiver out of Auburn. The Steelers likely went into this draft feeling pretty good about their selection of wide receivers. That makes this a best player available type of pick.

Like last year’s fourth round pick, Martavis Bryant, Coates is a size-speed prospect with a lot of upside. Also like Bryant, he is subject to drops and inconsistency. There is no question that Coates can explode and dominate opposing secondaries, it’s when and how often.

There are plenty of things to like about Coates–plenty of un-coachable things–and a few question marks as well. So it goes in the third round.

This wasn’t an area of need for the Steelers. I can understand wanting to surround the aging Ben Roethlisberger with talent, but Coates will have to impress and gain trust to see significant playing time in 2015. I give the pick a “B-” due to other areas of need and the unpolished nature of the receiver.

That gives the Steelers a “B” grade for day two overall, and an “A-” for the draft thus far (I round up here due to the first two picks addressing huge needs while also grabbing some excellent talent).

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