NFL mock draft 2.0: Steelers think outside the box with run on cornerbacks early

Steelers, Georgia
Steelers, Georgia / Todd Kirkland/GettyImages
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15. Green Bay Packers: Lukas Van Ness, DL, Iowa

The Packers could use help across their defensive line, and Lukas Van Ness is a versatile piece who could help. He reminds me much of another Packer, Preston Smith (who is now 30 years old). Van Ness has the ability to play EDGE or he can slide inside as a defensive tackle. Despite weighing in at 272 pounds, his strength is rare and his long frame will be coveted.

16. Washington Commanders: Deonte Banks, CB, Maryland

In today's passing league, cornerbacks are in short supply. Outside of Kendall Fuller, the Commanders just happen to have one of the scariest cornerback situations in the league. While Deonte Banks might not be the best value pick here, he's an athletic CB who fills a huge position of need.

17. Pittsburgh Steelers: Nolan Smith, EDGE, Georgia

I know this pick might throw everybody through a loop, but if the offensive tackles and cornerbacks are wiped out, an edge defender is very much in play for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Mike Tomlin and Omar Khan met with four top EDGE prospects at their pro days -- one of whom was Georgia's, Nolan Smith. If they are willing to get a little creative, Smith is a great football player who can line up at linebacker or edge and give them a spark. He would act as insurance if T.J. Watt were to go down with an injury again.

18. Detroit Lions: Calijah Kancey, DT, Pittsburgh

After taking Aidan Hutchinson near the top of the 2022 draft, the Lions still have a need at defensive tackle. Pitt's Calijah Kancey is the flashiest interior pass rusher in the class. While he may be undersized, there's a ton of upside here if he can continue to get quick pressure on the quarterback from the inside.