NFL Mock Draft Roundup: Who are the Pittsburgh Steelers taking?
By Tommy Jaggi
With the free agency buzz winding down, NFL fans are shifting their attention to the 2023 NFL Draft. Now that most of the top free agents have been signed and needs have been filled, we are getting a much clearer picture of where the top players could land this April.
Mock drafts are in full swing, and the experts are updating their predictions. For the Pittsburgh Steelers, it looks like they could be narrowing things down to an offensive tackle or cornerback early based on the holes they filled over the past two weeks. Here's the most recent NFL mock draft round-up for the Steelers:
Steelers mock draft roundup after NFL free agency:
Daniel Jeremiah, NFL.com: Broderick Jones, OT, Georgia
This one would make a lot of Pittsburgh Steelers fans very happy. Mike Tomlin's team hasn't spent higher than a third-round pick on the offensive line in a decade and left tackles are hard to come by. Broderick Jones certainly fits the bill of what they could look for.
Jones still has a ton of work to do when it comes to mechanics, but he possesses all of the raw traits you could ask for with prototype size and length and a muscular build. Jones has terrific mobility and is excellent at getting to the second level in the running game. In time, he would prove to be a significant upgrade over Dan Moore Jr. at left tackle.
Mel Kiper,ESPN: Deonte Banks, CB, Maryland
If the Steelers have their hearts set on a cornerback, Deonte Banks might be the best they can do in the first round. Christian Gonzalez is projected to go high, while it seems unlikely that both Devon Witherspoon and Joey Porter Jr. could make it to pick 17.
Banks is a freakish athlete who has made improvements each year but still has some things to work on. At 23 years old, he's one of the older CB prospects this year. Still, he meets the size thresholds to play on the outside at 6'0'' with 31 3/8'' arms, and his 4.35 speed shows up on film.
Pete Prisco,CBS Sports: Devon Witherspoon, CB, Illinois
In most mocks, Devon Witherspoon is off the board before the Steelers pick at 17. However, some NFL Draft analysts think he may slip due to the fact that he hasn't done any athletic testing during the pre-draft process.
Witherspoon might have the most complete tape out of all the cornerbacks this year, but at 5'11 1/2'' and 181 pounds, he doesn't have prototype size or athletic traits for the position. Pete Prisco has Broderick Jones going one pick before the Steelers in this mock with Tennessee OT Darnell Wright being taken two picks later.
Danny Kelly,The Ringer: Darnell Wright, OT, Tennessee
Speaking of Darnell Wright, this is a name that is heating up in connection with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Wright has flown under the radar for most of the pre-draft process, but I really like his film, and he showed that he has plenty of mobility and foot quickness at 6'5'' and 333 pounds.
Wright has loads of experience in the SEC and did a phenomenal job against Alabama's Will Anderson. He's probably a right tackle in the NFL, but he could be a very good one. If the Steelers miss out on Danny Kelly of The Ringer has Joey Porter Jr. going to the Commanders one pick before Pittsburgh is on the clock.