5 questionable draft trends the Pittsburgh Steelers must rethink

Artie Burns
Artie Burns /
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Safety Terrell Edmunds #22 of the Virginia Tech Hokies. (Photo by Michael Shroyer/Getty Images) /

Only take players from schools with personal connections

The Steelers scouting department is better than most. Some teams, like the Cincinnati Bengals, only have a handful of scouts that cover all of college football. Pittsburgh, however, has certain schools they are most comfortable.

If you have been studying Mike Tomlin and Kevin Colbert’s draft tendencies, it’s clear that they favor drafting players from schools they have connections with like Michigan, Virginia Tech, Maryland, Ohio State, and pretty much all of the small schools in the Michigan area (Toledo, Central Michigan, Akron, etc.). Unfortunately, honing in on schools in this region often causes them to miss out on talent in some great football programs – primarily in the SEC.

To be fair, Pittsburgh has had a lot of success sticking to what they know and the schools they are familiar with. However, if they are willing to expand their scouting department and relationships with schools outside of their region, there would likely be more players in play for their first-round picks.

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It’s hard to complain too much about how the Steelers have drafted, but following some of these trends has resulted in missing out on elite prospects or busting on first-round picks in recent years. I’m not saying that Pittsburgh should ignore these completely, but they may want to rethink some of these tendencies moving forward.