Day one was excellent in my opinion for the Steelers when they drafted Florida offensive linemen Maurkice Pouncey. Pouncey fit a need can contribute right away more than likely and is versatile. Day 2 of the draft in my opinion was not as fruitful. They started with talk that the Steelers wanted to move up in round 2. Smoke screen? Perhaps, but one really never knows for sure. Either it was a smoke screen or the price was just too much.
In my opinion things were going the perfect way for the Black and Gold as a few players were sliding down the board. A lot of the fan base was hoping for Golden Tate, the Notre Dame receiver, to be the round 2 selection, but I had good word that the Steelers were not high on him despite a pre draft visit. As it got closer to the Steelers pick, I am sure the eyes of Colbert and company were on free safety Taylor Mays. Mays at one time was a 1st round talent that fell into the 2nd round after the combine. Regardless, I thought for sure a defensive back was the pick with free safety being the preference followed by cornerback.
The pick was announced as outside linebacker Jason Worilds from Virginia Tech. Worilds is a stand up OLB in the NFL, a classic tweener type for the 3-4. In my opinion he looks better in drills then on film. He will not contribute right away except for special teams hopefully. He has a ton to learn and I feel he was a reach in round 2 especially with the needs the Steelers have in other areas. If linebacker was the play, I saw inside linebacker as a better play with perhaps drafting Penn State local, Sean Lee. This tweeners scare me.
On to round 3, the defensive backs were pouring off the draft board early on in round 3, with half of the first 12 3rd round picks being defensive backs. The value was now gone at the position except for cornerback Brandon Ghee from Wake Forest. The Steelers opted instead to go wide receiver in the 3rd as they did last year with Mike Wallace. They selected small school speedster and leaper, Emmanuel Sanders. Sanders played in the June Jones spread offense, but is a north south lid remover that can leap out of buildings.
The Sanders pick now screams that the organization is admitting that Limas Sweed is indeed a bust. I even predicted a late wide receiver like Joe Webb in this draft, but not this early. The Steelers now will almost certainly be forced to carry 6 receivers on the 53 man roster, which in my opinion is one too many. You can also say goodbye to Stefan Logan now it is plain to see. Sanders has returned kicks and will be thrown into the large pile of guys to see who emerges as the new return man. I am betting it is not Sanders. If receiver was the play here, Jordan Shipley from Texas would of been a much better pick here.
Except for LaMarr Woodley and Mike Wallace, the Steelers 2nd and 3rd round picks have not been stellar since 2006. Anthony Smith and Willie Reid were both 3rd rounders in 2006 and the Steelers traded their 2nd round pick that year for Santonio Holmes. Woodley was a 2nd round pick in 2007 and Matt Spaeth was the 3rd round pick that year. 2008 brought us Limas Sweed in the 2nd and Bruce Davis in the 3rd. 2009 brought us Wallace along with Kraig Urbik and Keenan Lewis. While it is too early to throw the towel in on Urbik and Lewis, last year sure did not give you a great feeling about either.
Saturday is the final day of what is considered a deep draft. Hopefully I feel better as good about day 3 as I did after night one. I am going to sleep on day 2, but right now would have to grade both picks today a D minus.