Steelers GM Kevin Colbert talks about the Steelers draft
Before Colbert went into why they specifically drafted Harris, he clarified Pittsburgh’s position on selecting a running back in the first round. Jim Miller and Pat Kirwin asked a very pointed question of Colbert. The general consensus is not to draft a running back in the first round, given they have very short life spans in the NFL. According to Colbert, the Steelers do not buy into that philosophy. They look at each player individually, and if they feel they can improve the team at whatever position they play, they will draft that player with that draft pick. So, in short, Pittsburgh felt that Harris had the best ability to improve their team the most, and they took him.
Why did the Steelers like Harris? Well, interestingly enough, while his rushing abilities did impress Pittsburgh, Harris’s decision to opt on for the 2020 college season and obtain his degree heavily impressed the Steelers. Colbert mused that so many players decide to come out early for whatever reason, and Harris easily could have but chose not to. They feel that speaks volumes about a player’s character. So when they were on the clock, they pulled the trigger on Harris. In some ways, that makes sense in that it shows a hint of maturity some college players who opt out might not have.