Pittsburgh Steelers: 15 greatest first-round picks of all-time

Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /
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Alan Faneca, Pittsburgh Steelers
Alan Faneca, Pittsburgh Steelers. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images) /

Steelers 1998 first-round pick: G Alan Faneca

Alan Faneca came into Pittsburgh without a major need on the offensive line, but turned his opportunities into a Pro Football Hall of Fame finalist career. An All-American out of LSU, Faneca was drafted No. 26 overall by the Steelers in 1998.

Faneca didn’t earn a starting job in Pittsburgh until injuries pushed him into a starting role, but he took the pressure and ran with it. In 1998, he earned the Joe Greene Award for the team’s best rookie.

The Steelers guard went on to be named to nine Pro Bowls and earned six First-Team All-Pro honors throughout his career. Over a 13-year NFL career, Faneca started 201 games and spent 10 years with the Steelers.

He eventually moved on to play for the Arizona Cardinals and the New York Jets before retiring in 2010 as a member of the Steelers. Now, he’s a two-time finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but is still waiting for his name to be called to before inevitable Canton enshrinement.

To Pittsburgh fans, he’s one of, if not the, greatest offensive lineman to play in black and yellow. In the Steel City, he’s a Pro Football Hall of Famer waiting for his turn to take that iconic podium in Canton and have his bust placed in the hall forever.