Why Steelers were wrong by trading up for Devin Bush in 2019 NFL Draft
By Tommy Jaggi
Devin Bush hasn’t panned out at all as planned. Here are three reasons why the Pittsburgh Steelers were wrong by trading up for a linebacker.
At the time when the Pittsburgh Steelers traded up for linebacker Devin Bush in the 2019 NFL Draft, I wasn’t opposed to the player. In fact, Bush would have been my choice with the 10th overall pick as well. However, when we think about what Kevin Colbert gave up to acquire the athletic, young linebacker, I knew at the time that the draft capital was too steep.
We couldn’t have predicted that Devin Bush was going to tear his ACL early in his second NFL season, but we do know the history of injuries at the linebacker position. Regardless of the events that have played out so far, here are three reasons why the Steelers were wrong to trade up for Devin Bush:
Linebackers are becoming the running backs of defense
This might sound like an exaggeration, but much like running backs to the offensive side of the ball, linebackers aren’t the most valuable position on defense. In fact, there are only a few linebackers in the NFL. These are the Bobby Wagner’s of the world who are few and far between.
Most linebackers who have been taken in the first round of the NFL Draft over the past decade have hardly been worth their weight in gold. This is largely because they can be exploited by high-powered offenses.
Just like I disagreed with the Najee Harris selection this year because of the value of the position, linebackers have short shelf lives and are constantly getting banged up. This is why many teams choose to simply draft and replace rather than paying them elite money after their first contracts.