5 best Pittsburgh Steelers draft picks of the Kevin Colbert era
The Steelers draft yet another Hall of Famer in the first round of the NFL draft
When the Steelers drafted Troy Polamalu in the first round of the 2003 draft, I’m sure we thought that he would become a great player. Not only was Polamalu a great player, but he was the penultimate ‘improviser’. Over his twelve-year career, Polamalu would frequently use his tremendous instincts to make a play, a play that would frequently be the deciding factor in an eventual Steelers victory.
Polamalu’s ‘feel’ for the game really can not be understated. In my opinion, the Steelers defense during Polamalu’s tenure was simply better with him than without him. He was truly a generational talent who could turn an opposing offensive drive that looked certain of ending in points into a stalled drive because of an INT or because of a forced fumble. Polamalu notched 32 INTs and forced 14 fumbles over his career. He also added 12 sacks.
During his stellar career, Polamalu would be named to the Pro Bowl eight times, would be named All-Pro four times, would be named the 2010 Defensive Player of the Year, was a two-time Super Bowl champ and will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame this year.
I consider myself fortunate to have watched both Polamalu and Donnie Shell play the safety position for the Steelers. It is only fitting that Polamalu and Shell will be part of the same Hall of Fame class.