How Chase Claypool and Alex Highsmith with impact the Steelers in 2020
The Pittsburgh Steelers selected two prospects during rounds two and three yesterday, here is how they will fit in on the roster.
While there were some mixed opinions on which positions Pittsburgh could target early, the Steelers got the ball rolling with an incredibly athletic wide receiver in the second round of the 2020 NFL Draft. With their compensatory third-round pick, they added an intriguing developmental small-school prospect. Here’s how they could impact the Steelers in 2020 and beyond:
Chase Claypool, WR, Notre Dame
Chase Claypool is a huge target with blazing speed that saw him post a 4.42 40-yard dash time. He can high point the football and make combated catches. Claypool will see immediate playing time – especially when it comes to red-zone opportunities. The fast and productive Canadian player turned heads at Notre Dame and finished his last season strong – compiling over 1,000 yards and 13 touchdowns. Claypool finds the end zone one way or another by using his body and battling for the football.
Ryan Switzer seems to be the obvious odd man out for the team when it comes to the position. With starters like Smith-Schuster, Diontae Johnson, and James Washington, the Steelers will need to find snaps for each player. With likely only five or six receivers, it seems like an uphill battle for some of these other players to make the cut when it comes to the final formulated roster.
Other receivers that will be fighting for spots are players like Deon Cain, Amara Darboh, and Saeed Blacknall. Each one will have to find a unique opportunity to impress coaches with limited time due to the Corona Virus pandemic sweeping the world right now.
Alex Highsmith, OLB, Charlotte
Alex Highsmith is a pass rusher who came from a small school, but produced big numbers and broke records. He jumped off the tape when they played elite talent against the Clemson Tigers. The 6’4”, 248-pound edge rusher shows good talent for the position with his explosiveness and his ability to finish plays strong. The former walk-on at Charlotte was able to make an incredible collegiate career and now make it to the NFL.
During his senior season, he totaled 15 sacks, 21.5 tackles for a loss, 75 tackles, and 2 forced fumbles. Highsmith has a good chance of developing into a special player and with him being able to sit behind one of the best pass-rushing duos in the NFL for at least one season, that is nothing but great for a player like him.
Highsmith is a prospect still under development and gaining some NFL experience well learning along the sidelines and become a special teams guru, it will do nothing better than help him become a better player going forward.
Highsmith will provide depth and breathers for the starters. Both Watt and Dupree played many snaps last year and they both dominated in their own respects, but Highsmith could provide some meaningful snaps where Watt or Dupree could take a breather on the sideline.
The Steelers enter day three of the NFL Draft with two high-upside players now on their team. Let’s hope they can land a few more players who could impact the team in a big way.