Steelers mock draft: Defense is the priority after new OL additions
By Andrew Falce
Steelers round 7
Kicking off the final round, the Steelers look to fill some depth needs and add special teams options. The first name comes from a familiar family, as Isaiah Pola-Mao is related to Hall of Fame safety Troy Polamalu. While the upcoming safety is far less revered than Polamalu was, he has the traits to be a successful player.
He has great size and physicality for a box or strong safety at the next level. While not an elite athlete, he has more than enough speed and agility to hold his own in coverage. While he may never become a starter for this team, he has all of the traits of a fine backup and a good special team player. Add in his family ties and this seems like a good pairing.
Amare Barno wraps up this draft class, and he would project well into the Steelers edge rusher depth chart. While not a dynamic defender in college, Barno did well enough as a player for Virginia Tech. He only compiled 10 total sacks over the past two seasons, but his rawness as a pass rusher is evident on tape. He will need some work before he can be counted on regularly.
What makes him intriguing though is his rare athleticism. He tested as an insanely good athlete at the combine, rivaling former first-round pick Odafe Oweh in terms of speed and agility. He should be able to take on a special teams role early as he progressed as a pass rusher. He needs some work to be sure, but Barno would have time to develop behind the Steelers talented starters.
While there is still quite a bit of time for the Steelers to finalize their draft board, this new spin does a lot well. While I’m not sold on Davis in the first, the rest of the class panned out nicely. With the offensive line getting a few pieces in free agency, this draft addresses most of the other needs.