5 biggest draft needs for the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2020

BALTIMORE, MD - OCTOBER 01: Offensive tackle Alejandro Villanueva
BALTIMORE, MD - OCTOBER 01: Offensive tackle Alejandro Villanueva /

The Steelers have a lot of question marks heading into the 2020 offseason. Here are Pittsburgh’s current five biggest draft needs this April.

The Steelers flipped a switch defensively this season. After their defense finished 16th in points allowed per game in 2018, Pittsburgh saw their best defensive season since the days of Troy Polamalu and James Harrison – finishing 5th in both yards allowed and points allowed per game.

While the Steelers were able to bolster their defensive roster in 2019, their offense took a major step back. With Ben Roethlisberger injured and no serviceable quarterback to lead the charge, Pittsburgh finished the season 30th in offensive yards per game and 27th in points per game.

A lot changes over the course of the year, and some of the positions Pittsburgh thought they were set on have become positions of need. As it stands before free agency, here are my top five biggest draft needs for the Steelers:


If this season taught us anything, it’s just how important the quarterback position really is. Despite a premier defense, the Steelers offense struggled horribly without a competent passer. Roethlisberger turns 38 years old this offseason, and Mason Rudolph and Devlin Hodges aren’t the answer when he is gone. The Steelers don’t have much draft capital to play with but make no mistake that the quarterback position still needs to be addressed soon.

Offensive line

The Steelers offensive line is aging fast, and it shows. Maurkice Pouncey is coming off his worst season in the NFL, while Ramon Foster showed regression in his old age. B.J. Finney is a free agent this offseason, and Pittsburgh may not retain him. In addition, the Steelers haven’t given a contract extension to Matt Feiler, and he may not be with the team long-term. After ignoring the position for so long in the NFL Draft, it has finally caught up to them.

Tight end

The Steelers used their tight ends sparingly this season. But even with their limited usage, Pittsburgh only had two guys who regularly dressed and saw time on the field. Vance McDonald is a possible cap casualty this offseason, and cutting him could save the Steelers a lot of money. Also, Pittsburgh needs to decide whether or not to give Nick Vannett an extension.

Running back

I am not a fan of drafting running backs early in the draft, but there is little doubt that Pittsburgh could use an upgrade at the position. James Conner is constantly injured and Jaylen Samuels isn’t a consistent or powerful runner between the tackles. Benny Snell is a slow, bruising back, but should be a solid piece of the puzzle moving forward. The Steelers could really use a running back with speed and elusiveness to help them on the ground.

Defensive line

Edge defender will spring right up on the Steelers list if they can’t get a deal done with Bud Dupree, but as of now, it looks like Pittsburgh will be thin along the defensive line. Though Stephon Tuitt is set to return, Javon Hargrave is likely to hit the market this offseason. Tyson Alualu is a solid backup inside, but he has just one year left on his deal and will be 33 years old when his contract expires. The Steelers could certainly use more depth here.

Grading the Steelers rookie class after the 2019 season. dark. Next

We will have a much better feel for the positions the Steelers will address in the 2020 NFL Draft after they decide what to do in free agency. As of now, these are five areas that look like they could use the most help moving forward.