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Friday, April 24, 2015

My ideal Steelers draft

I'm tired of doing mock drafts, even though I will do my final one later this week. So instead, today I'll do a mock eight-selection draft for the Steelers, who have eight picks in the seven-round draft, with the players I think the team will target in each round.

Obviously, availability will have a lot to do with this, otherwise, I'd simply plug in Dante Fowler in the first round, even though there's no way he's there in with the 22nd pick.

Round 1-Kevin Johnson, CB, Wake Forest - I think Johnson will be there for the Steelers and he's a guy who can, at the very least, step right in as the nickel corner. I could also see Byron Jones being the guy. But if Shane Ray's toe injury causes him to fall, he's go a shot as well.

Round 2-Lorenzo Mauldin, OLB, Louisville - Kid who had 16 different sets of foster homes could find a home with the Steelers. Was a productive collegiate pass rusher and is considered a high-character guy. Just what the Steelers need. If they go OLB in the first, then they go corner in the second, with Quentin Rollins, Eric Rowe or Jalen Collins being targets - yes, I think Collins falls that far.

Round 3-Tre McBride, WR, William & Mary - Mike Tomlin bites the bullet and takes a kid from his alma mater. McBride is worth the pick. He's the next in the long line of third-round receivers who make an impact with the Steelers.

Round 4-Senquez Golson, CB, Ole Miss - Golson isn't very big, but all he does is make big plays. The Steelers could use a player like that.

Round 5-Shaquille Mason, G/C, Georgia Tech - Mason is the kind of athlete the Steelers have drafted in recent years on their offensive line. He's a bit undersized, but he can pull and run block well coming from Tech's run-heavy offense.

Round 6 (1)-Wes Saxton, TE, South Alabama - Saxton is a better athlete than a football player right now, but the Steelers have a little time to develop him before Heath Miller hangs up his pads for good. He's a willing blocker and ran a 4.65 40.

Round 6 (2)-Kyle Emmanuel, OLB, North Dakota State - A big-time playmaker at the lower levels, Emmanuel might eventually develop into a valuable backup with starter capabilities. At worst, he's a core special teams player.

Round 7-Corey Crawford, DE, Clemson - At 6-5, 299, he's got ideal size for a 3-4 defensive end. He might never be starter quality, but could be a valuable backup.

Well, there it is. I realize there are no running backs on the list, but there weren't any I wanted to take over the value picks of McBride, Golson, Mason and Saxton in the middle round. Then, you might as well wait and bring in a URFA.


Qwikdoc said...

IMO the Steelers need to focus heavily on defense in this and the next draft. They need to solidify their defense and make it a top ten unit in the next few years with no glaring holes.
They will be drafting their next franchise QB in a few years and if they want him to be successful like Big Ben has been, they need to give him a defense like Ben had when he started playing. I don't know if Ben would have developed into the QB he is if he had been thrown in as a starter with a defense like the Steelers have fielded the past several years.
Defense, defense, defense. That's all I want to see until 2017!

Mike said...

I'd be totally fine with this draft. Not a huge fan of Mauldin, but I think his floor and ceiling are basically right around that Gildon lvl, which is fine, I guess. Like all the other picks.

Anonymous said...

I like some of the players, but not in the those rounds. I think this draft is really interesting because, unlike some other years, the Steelers have "need" positions, but the best players that are likely to be available when they pick, at least in rounds 1 and 2, may not fit those positions. I put my under informed fan mock draft hat on and make some predictions:

-based on how the first 21 picks go, you may see the Steelers trade back to pick up another pick in the second or third round. I'm not sure the BPA will fit their need, so they may want to go back.

-if Shane Ray falls, they may see him as a Elvis Dumervillhe type of situational pass rusher, which would mean they would look for Pernell McFee type to play on running downs, later in the draft. They've seen these specialty players work for Baltimore and other teams, it may be on Butler's radar also. Players like Mario Edwards, Trey Flowers, Za'Darius Smith, or Frank Clark would fit the mold.

-If there is lineman on either O or D they like enough still on the board at in the first, look for them to grab him. Dominant lineman are not easily found later in any draft. CB, WR, RB, S can all be picked up later. That is why the Steelers typically draft the way they do. It's science.

-ridiculous Mock

1. Marcus Peters CB Washington
2. Carl Davis DT Iowa
3. Marcus Golden OLB Mizzu
4. Tre McBride WR William and Mary
5. Jeff Heurman TE Ohio State
6. Adrian Amos FS Penn State
6. Daryl Roberts CB Marshall
7. Quinton Spain OG WVU

Joe Jones said...

I want to see how my prior mock pans out. I took a lot of heat because my picks weren't in line with the thinking a month ago.

Not sold on KJ, can find similar talent rnd 2. Ray or Beasley are still my top options rnd 1.

Dale Lolley said...

One of them would have to be there Joe. I don't think they will be.

datruth4life said...

Dale, I really like your mock. It pretty much covered all the bases. I think Mauldin will be there in the 3rd round. Love the character, just wish he had a little more first step get-off. Here's my final mock as well:

1. CB K. Johnson, Wake Forest
2. OLB Owamagbe Odighizuwa, UCLA
3. WR T. McBride, William and Mary
4. CB Dorian Grant, OSU
5. TE J. James, Penn State
6. OLB Kyle Emmanuel, North Dakota State
6. DE/DT Derrick Lott, Tennessee-Chattanooga
7. OG Quinton Spain, WVU

I'm betting that 'OO' is this year's Stephon Tuitt, a talked about late first-rounder that makes it to the 2nd round. I think the Steelers didn't bring in McBride in the hopes of stealing him in the 3rd or 4th round. I'd err on the side of caution and take him in the 3rd as well. He could be a difference-maker as a returner and slot WR next year for this team. I'm taking Grant over Golson just due to the fact that Grant, with some development, might project to the outside as well as a slot CB. I see Golson as a slot cover CB only.

datruth4life said...

Dale, if Shane Ray is makes it to 18 or 19, if you are Kevin Colbert, do you move up to get him? I don't believe he will slide that far, but teams have been known to do dumb things before. I think this kid is gonna be a 10 to 12 sack guy a year early in his career. I'd think long and hard about moving up to get him. I think I'd take Gregory off my board but I'd still consider Marcus Peters at 22. I'd sleep a lot better as a GM taking a chance on Peters at no. 22 than I would if I took Jameis Winston at pick no. 1 to be my franchise QB going fwd. But then again, what's why Tampa Bay is Tampa Bay.

Zeke R said...

I think if he falls out of the top 16, Colbert trades with San Diego to get Ray..

Joe Jones said...

Dale I'm just having a hard time with the idea of forcing a CB rnd 1 when there will surely be similar CB's there for us in rnd 2.

This is a very deep class of B-level cb's. Don't see any shutdown types aside from my boy Peters who you've sold me on as not an option for the steelers.

Joe Jones said...

I really want to see where Bud Dupree lands. Your evaluation is correct as early rnd 2 talent, but I think he'll be this years Dontari Poe where sheer atheleticism & size takes him into the top-15 or so.

Seemed like Tomlin was impressed at his pro day. Maybe he'll be a steeler if he's there.

Dale Lolley said...

Players are always talked up at the pro day. What's Tomlin going to say when asked about him?

"Well, he's a hell of an athlete, but he doesn't know a lick about football."

Would have been true. But nobody is going to say that.

datruth4life said...

Dale, Shane Ray got cited for marijuana possession this morning on top of some teams being concerned about whether he will need surgery on one of his toes. If he drops to 22, do you bite? This kid can straight up get after the QB and is quick-twitch personified. He's also strong enough to play the run. Thoughts?

Dale Lolley said...

I think they take a pass at this point. I was thinking yesterday before the arrest news broke he would be a possibility. That's why I asked the question at the press conference about how much they listen to the "rumors" being floated.

But an arrest three days before the draft? That's just dumb.

Anonymous said...

I don't think the Steelers even consider Ray in round 1. Maybe round 2.

datruth4life said...

Dale, I agree it was dumb. Extremely dumb, considering he reportedly failed a test for Mary Jane earlier at Missouri. However, next to Fowler, he's the 2nd best pass rusher in this draft. And he was cited for possession of marijuana; he was not arrested. And you also have the toe injury situation as well. If he makes it to 22, the Steelers will have an interesting decision to make.

LexingtonLegend said...

what tough decision do they have to make? he's exhibited a pattern of dumb choices. you don't trust millions of dollars to a guy that will get himself suspended.

Marc said...

with the way the nfl hands down punishments these days, it seems to risky to take someone who already has a strike against them.

I'm wondering if the steelers don't get a crack at a premier OLB/CB at 22 if they don't entertain trading down to early in the 2nd and grab one then. both positions seem to be pretty deep in this draft, according to others.

Anonymous said...

Dion Jordan from the Dolphins just got handed a year long ban. No way the Steelers pick a guy who's already on strike 1 with the league.

Tom said...

La'el Collins makes too much sense for what this team is trying to build on the line. Munchak could turn him into a Pro-Bowler.

datruth4life said...

Tom, did you see where the police in Louisiana want to question La'el Collins in the shooting death of his former girlfriend that occurred a few weeks ago? According to Adam Schefter, doctors were able to save the baby though the mother died and teams want to know if Collins is the father of the baby. I don't know but I think I'll pass on that. That situation could end up with someone in pin stripes for life.

Zeke R said...

Well I guess I take back the trade with San Diego for Ray, now I see them doing the same trade for Peterson. I think they move up in this draft.

Marc said...

Collins is not a suspect, per the police. They just want additional info regarding the girl.

datruth4life said...

Dale, saw you in the Steelers Nation Unite Mock Draft. Definitely a face for the internet and radio, lol. Good job.

Marc said...

i think they hold pat or trade down. looks like they will probably have their choice of jones/peters/Johnson at CB depending on who gets taken first. then maybe add ray to the mix as well if he falls at OLB. if they have other CB/OLB evenly rated, then why not drop back a bit, pick up an extra pick, and take one of them. as always, it will be interesting to see how things unfold.

Zeke R said...

Peters not Peterson..

Zeke R said...

Check out the paws on Byron Jones!! DANG

Marc said...

i know. I keep trying to figure out why he's not more highly rated amongst the "experts". they can't stop gushing about all his positives, on and off the field, but then often times is the 4th CB off the board. this kid seems, to me, to be the best pick amongst the bunch. then again, I'm not an nfl GM.

Zeke R said...

Not as physical as the other "top" three.. Is the only thing I see..
Deion wasn't physical either but made up for it in other ways, no not saying he is neon Deion just throwing it out there.

Joe Jones said...

I'll still take Ray. Serious speed at linebacker with him and Shazier.