Steelers biggest remaining needs prior to the 2024 NFL Draft

The Steelers have made many moves this offseason, but Omar Khan still has his work cut out for him to solidify a contending roster for 2024.
Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Omar Khan addresses the media
Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Omar Khan addresses the media / Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Steelers have had an eventful offseason, especially by their standards. Surprise trades, a complete overhaul of the quarterback room, and multiple free agent signings have changed the direction of the team under Mike Tomlin and Omar Khan’s leadership. All of these moves have also created a clear vision of what the roster still needs in order to be competitive in 2024. 

The NFL Draft seems to be how they plan to address their remaining needs, but how likely is it for them to be able to do so? Let’s take a closer look at their weak points and whether they can rely on a draft pick to strengthen them. 


Center isn’t their most impactful weak point, but it is the spot where they have the fewest in-house answers. If the season started today, the starting center would likely be Nate Herbig. Nothing against Herbig, but I would not love the idea of a backup guard getting that job.  

The draft seems to be the Steelers preferred way of bringing in a new starter, but center is not a position you want to be forced to address. There are several options this year, but they will likely need to use one of their first three picks to get a day-one starter. If the board doesn’t fall favorably, however, they could even fail to get a starter entirely.  

Bringing in a veteran with much more experience than Herbig would help alleviate those concerns, as well as give them the flexibility to pass on center entirely if the value isn’t good. Someone like Brian Allen or even Connor Williams (if his medicals check out) would allow them to not force a pick just to fill the role.  

Offensive Tackle 

The Steelers were smart to address their issues at offensive tackle in last year's draft, selecting Broderick Jones at 14th overall. Unfortunately, Dan Moore Jr. did not improve in his third year, and Chukwuma Okorafor was an average tackle prior to his benching for comments made about the offense's performance. Still in need of help, the Steelers are in a good position to take one of the top right tackles in the draft. 

Jones was asked to play right tackle last year so that Dan Moore did not have to move spots, and overall played well for a young rookie. Still, the Steelers' recent habit of asking linemen to play out of their natural positions needs to stop.

Jones should be viewed as the left tackle of the future, and for him to be that they need to find a right tackle who can step in right away. The free agent market is rather bare at this point, filled with low-ceiling veterans and few players with upside.  

One player does have potential that could be worth a one-year flyer: Mekhi Becton. The former New York Jets first-round pick has struggled to stay healthy, but he played 16 games in 2023 and got some experience at right tackle to start the season. He played rather poorly, however, but was not in a great situation to be fair.

Outside of a dart throw like him, the draft is likely where a new potential starter will come from. Their first pick at 20th overall is prime position to take a tackle, and they seem to have their sights set on one in particular

Wide Receiver 

Steelers General Manager Omar Khan has been very aggressive in the trade market this offseason, and for the most part, the trades have made sense. Shipping QB Kenny Pickett to the Eagles and flipping a conditional pick to the Bears for QB Justin Fields was a great upside play after Pickett’s struggles as a starter.

The trade of receiver Diontae Johnson for Panthers cornerback Donte Jackson, however, was puzzling for many. Johnson is clearly the better player of the two, and now the Steelers have a major hole at receiver. 

Jackson is a fine corner, but he would be best as the third or fourth cornerback on a good defense. Corner is definitely still high on the Steelers list, which makes the trade a bit underwhelming. Perhaps the Steelers really wanted Johnson off the team, or more likely they just have a higher opinion of Jackson than most. Regardless, receiver now becomes a huge need if they want to get the offense back to relevancy. 

Free agency is full of mostly declining vets, although a player like former Bengals receiver Tyler Boyd could fill the slot position for at least 2024. The draft is once again where they could find potential impact players, whether it be at pick 20 or more likely on day two of the draft.

Overall, the Steelers are in solid shape to fill out their roster, but they must have a plan in the event the draft doesn’t solve all of their remaining issues.