5 defensive studs from the combine Steelers must be drooling over

Clemson defensive lineman Ruke Orhorhoro (DL21)
Clemson defensive lineman Ruke Orhorhoro (DL21) / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
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Steelers will be all over Payton Wilson

On the surface, linebacker isn’t the biggest need with the likely return of both Elandon Roberts and Cole Holcomb. It seems as though there are some questions with Holcomb’s health though, and there is a need for a long-term solution at the position. Because of this, the team has openly talked about drafting someone.

That someone could be Payton Wilson, as he looked elite during the combine’s drills. His speed was off the charts, but his overall testing numbers were some of the best in the class. He isn’t your typical undersized linebacker either, as he is nearly 6’4 despite a more slender build.

Pittsburgh has been attracted to athletes at the linebacker position. Each of their last two early-round investments at the position were freak athletes. While that doesn’t mean you will be successful as a linebacker (I’m looking at you Devin Bush), the modern off-ball defender needs to be a decent athlete to help chase down running backs and work in space during coverage.

Wilson can be all of that, as his game doesn’t have a lot of weaknesses. His issue is his health, as he has struggled with injuries for most of his career. If he can come back clean on the medical evaluation, he should be an early favorite to land with the Steelers given his build, production, and insane athleticism.