The Pittsburgh Steelers are better than most teams at the NFL Draft, and that’s good news because misusing your draft picks is the quickest way to become the Cleveland Browns.
Pittsburgh has one of the league’s deepest and most talented rosters, but they do have a few important holes to fill.
Fixing the secondary and adding more depth on the offensive line should be priorities for Kevin Colbert and the Steelers front office. But who will they pick?
Let’s check in with what the experts are saying. Here is a quick look at the latest mock drafts from around the internet.
Chad Reuter: Eli Apple, Ohio State CB
“Three of the Steelers’ top four corners are free agents, and Cortez Allen is coming off an injury. Apple, coming off his redshirt sophomore, is just scratching the surface of his potential.”
Lance Zierlein: Hunter Henry, Arkansas TE
“Kevin Colbert believes in targeting the best players available. I don’t see a quality cornerback available here, and Henry has rare blocking talent to go along with his ability as a pass catcher. Henry could step in tomorrow and take over a starting spot.”
Taylor Decker: Ohio State OT
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Vadal Alexander: LSU OG
Shilique Calhoun: Michigan State OLB
“Shilique Calhoun has outstanding production at a high level. He’s produced double-digit sacks and double-digit tackles for loss three years running.”
William Jackson: Houston CB
“Jackson has the necessary physical tools, but it’s his ball skills and downfield awareness which lend to his exciting upside.”
If it were our pick, we’d still be taking the best cornerback on the board when the Steelers are on the clock. However, there are a few very interesting names here that we did not expect to see.
Heath Miller will turn 34 years old next season. While he is enormously popular in Pittsburgh and has only missed a handful of games in his career, the odds of him staying beyond 2016 when his contract runs out are pretty low. That means the Steelers will need to think about their next tight end now, which makes Hunter Henry an intriguing pick.
Adding offensive line depth should be a consideration, but we don’t see the Steelers using a first-rounder with Maurkice Pouncey coming back and Kelvin Beachum likely to re-sign.
Finally, Shilique Calhoun seems like a very Steeler-y outside linebacker, which has been the team’s strength for a long time. Kudos to drafttek for picking up on that.
Who would you pick, given the chance? You’re on the clock, Steelers fans.