4 Prospects the Steelers must avoid in the NFL Draft
By Scott Long
4. Jordan Davis, Defensive Tackle
One of the fastest-rising prospects in the NFL Draft this year is Jordan Davis. The big-bodied defensive tackle was an anchor on the Georgia Bulldogs National Championship defense and was a big reason that the team was so dominant against the run. While Davis is a dominant run-stuffer, and this is an unpopular opinion among Steeler fans, there are several reasons that the Steelers should avoid him in the draft.
Davis benefitted heavily from a tremendous NFL Scouting Combine where he showed off elite athleticism for his size. Despite measuring at 6′ 6 3/8″ and 341 lbs., Davis ran a 4.78 40-yard dash according to mockdrafttable.com. That combination of size and speed is what is making him so desirable to NFL teams.
However, despite measuring in at 341 lbs., he told Trevor Sikkema that his playing weight in college has been between 350 and 360lbs. While he wants to play between 330 and 340 lbs., it remains to be seen if he is still the same dominant run-stopping force that he was when he was playing this season at a heavier weight.
Finally, the biggest question around him is whether or not he is a three-down player. This question is two-fold, as most of his damage came against the run, and it’s unclear that he can stay on the field when teams run the no-huddle offense. While I’m sure he can develop more as a pass rusher to be more than just a run-stopper, the stamina is a real concern.
Yes, he is an athletic specimen for his size, but he may not have the stamina to stay on the field during two-minute drills, and no-huddle offense, which means teams won’t have to face him in the biggest moments. While he is a talented player who will likely be an elite run-stopper, this feels like a luxury pick, as he won’t play enough snaps to be worth selecting in the first round, when there are plenty of other positions the team can address.
Clearly, the NFL Draft is an integral part of team-building, and thus it is imperative that the Steelers pick the right players. The players listed above may not have bad careers, but the Steelers must avoid them due to the concerns I mentioned. Who the team picks remains to be seen, but they should look at players other than these four.