Steelers mock draft: Pittsburgh fills in the gaps after free agency frenzy
By Tommy Jaggi
It was a crazy first week of free agency for the Pittsburgh Steelers that was rather telling. With little salary cap space to work with, Omar Khan took some preemptive measures to ensure that his team wasn't going to stay quiet this March.
Though Pittsburgh did lose an important player in Cameron Sutton and essentially wiped the slate clean at the off-ball linebacker position, they more than improved by adding players like CB Patrick Peterson, OG Isaac Seumalo, LB Cole Holcomb, OG Nate Herbig, and LB Elandon Roberts.
Their moves so far in free agency have given us an excellent indication of which direction they could very well be headed early in the NFL Draft. Here's my updated seven-round Pittsburgh Steelers mock draft after an eventful week in free agency.
Steelers mock draft round 1: OT Darnell Wright
The Steelers reportedly had interest in signing former Chiefs OT Orlando Brown Jr., but they couldn't compete with the Bengals when it came to guarenteed money. Still, the fact that Omar Khan and Andy Weidl were looking into signing what would have been the most expensive free agent in franchise history is probably a pretty good indication that they are interested in taking an offensive tackle early in the 2023 NFL Draft.
While Broderick Jones has been the popular pick to the Steelers at 17 when it comes to the offensive tackle position, Darnell Wright is a sneaky-good prospect who could very well be in the mix. Wright has somehow gotten overlooked early in the pre-draft process with other players soaking up the spotlight, but he's a legitimate candidate to be taken here.
At 6'5'' and 333 pounds, Wright has impressive movement skills for a right tackle and can anchor as well as anyone in the class. His tape this past season at Tennessee was excellent, and I thought he was one of the standouts at Senior Bowl week.
Wright is a good enough athlete to play left or right tackle at the next level, but his frame and below-average arm length could make him better suited as Pittsburgh's long-term left tackle. Meanwhile the Steelers tried to sign a 345-pound OT in Brown and landed a 335-pound guard in Nate Herbig. This is the exact type of offensive lineman Andy Weidl seems to be looking for.