The Steelers drafted a quarterback, a cornerback and a defensive lineman who had less-than-stellar careers
Coming in at number twelve on our list is Mark Malone, who was our first-round pick in the 1980 NFL draft. Malone played seven seasons for us and accumulated a win-loss record of twenty-one wins and twenty-four regular season losses. I remember watching Malone play and thinking this: 'He's a good athlete who just can't seem to get over the proverbial hump'.
Malone also finished his Steelers career with fifty-four TD passes against sixty-eight INTs. Malone surpassed the two-thousand-yard passing mark only twice for us. It's not that Malone was bad, per se. It's just that Malone did not possess that 'it' factor that Terry Bradshaw had, the QB he was drafted to ostensibly replace down the road.
Grabbing the number eleven spot on our list is Deon Figures, our number one pick in the 1993 draft. I remember watching Figures play in college and thinking he would look really 'snazzy' in the Black and Gold. Unfortunately, it did not work out the way I and the Steelers hoped it would.
Figures was the 1992 Jim Thorpe Award winner, one of his many college accolades. In the NFL, he did not enjoy the same success. During his four-year Steelers career, Figures played in sixty-one games, starting twenty-three of them.
Figures managed to intercept only three passes in four years with us. He would play for two additional seasons, finishing his career with the Jacksonville Jaguars, where he picked off six passes. Go figure, pardon the almost pun.
At number ten on our list is Darryl Sims, a defensive lineman we selected in the first round of the 1985 draft. I can't really say much about Sims other than he was one of many of the defensive linemen we selected high in the draft in an attempt to replicate the success we had with the front four of the Steel Curtain.
Once we converted from a 4-3 base defense to a 3-4 base defense, it was all the more imperative that we had three defensive linemen who were good against the run but who also had pass-rush upside. Sims played two seasons for us, started zero games, and generated three sacks.
Let's see who comes in at numbers nine, eight, and seven, respectively. Here's where it starts getting interesting.