Steelers mock draft round 3: Junior Colson, LB, Michigan
Another one of my early draft crushes, Junior Colson is a throwback-style linebacker with the potential to develop into an every-down player. He weighs in at 6’3 and nearly 250 pounds, but you wouldn’t be able to guess that based on his athleticism. He plays sideline to sideline and has a knack for holding his own in coverage.
Colson is your classic downhill thumper. He uses his size and speed to punish runners in the box, and he always likes to deliver the big hit. He has good instincts in coverage, and while that is a developing area of his game, he does better than most players his size. Assuming those skills continue to improve, he could be an every-down linebacker sooner rather than later.
His biggest concerns lie in his tackling. While delivering the big hit is great, he can fail to wrap up at times and his technique can be sloppy. Luckily, that is a problem that can be coached. He also isn’t a great blitzer despite his size, which could cause some issues with his Steelers fit long-term. Both of those issues are small though, and Colson’s talent is worth those risks.
Linebacker isn’t the biggest need assuming everyone comes back healthy, but Elandon Roberts likely won’t be here past 2024 and Cole Holcomb is a good-not-great option. Colson can slowly grow into a role and become an impact player in the future.