The 2015 NFL Draft is finally here. It seems like only yesterday I was starting to get myself more acquainted with college players during the week of the Senior Bowl. Thankfully I had Youtube, Twitter and the torrents to keep me busy over the course of the last several months. Remember, I’m mania bipolar, am OCD and have ADD and sleep disorders. I can’t imagine life without all of those aforementioned web tools. I’d probably hang myself if they were ever to go away.
Now that I have that awful opening out of the way, I will now pass along some of my pre-draft thoughts and musings that are floating around in my three brains.
First off, Id like to thank all of that are regular visitors to this site. It’s been a great offseason for us here and I hope you have enjoyed our pre-draft coverage.
Secondly, I’d like to publicly thank all of the site contributors. I believe that Matthew Marczi, Alex Kozora, David Todd, Chris Nicolaou, Lucas Campbell, Luke Shabro and Josh Svetz have all done an amazing job since the 2014 season ended and I hope you agree.
Now on to a few of my final draft thoughts.
When it comes to edge-rushers Randy Gregory and Shane Ray, I wouldn’t touch either of them if I were the Pittsburgh Steelers. I had concerns about both of them way before the marijuana issues came along and when you add their off-the-field problems to those, neither are worth the risk, in my opinion. If I was blown away by the tape of either my tune would be different, but I wasn’t. We might get a chance Thursday night to see if the Steelers feel the same as I do, as I think there’s a good chance that both will still be on the board come time for their pick.
As far as Marcus Peters goes, I’m expecting him to be off the board before the Steelers pick as long as the character checks that teams did on him come back clean. When you think about it, he and Trae Waynes are the only two cornerbacks that really haven’t seen their draft stock fluctuate much throughout the offseason. He has very good tape and thus if he falls to the Steelers, you really have to wonder why. If the reason is character related, why wouldn’t the Steelers pass on him as well? This is probably just me overthinking things, but that’s where I stand with him on draft day.
Yes, I like Kevin Johnson as a cover man. Yes, I am worried about his tackling ability. Yes, I do think the Steelers really like him.
For the last few weeks I have found myself hoping that La’el Collins would somehow slip down in the first round so that the Steelers would get a gift, but never did I think that he would be going through the dilemma he’s going through right now. It’s awful. The internet character scouting that I do on players is limited to what I read and the interviews that I watch and I would’ve bet that Collins worst transgression over the course of the last few years was a parking ticket. I hope he’s found innocent of all wrong doings in the murder case over the course of the next few hours. However, as it stands right now, I don’t see how any team can still have him on their Thursday night draft board unless they know something that we don’t.
Byron Jones is the lone top-rated cornerback that I really don’t have a good feel for and I blame that on the lack of tape that’s available on him. His measurables are off the charts, however. Prior to the combine nobody was really talking about him, but since then, many are considering him a lock to go in the first round. I do wonder, however, why the Steelers chose not have anyone notable at his Pro-Day. Jones started 40-of-43 games at Connecticut. 21 as a free safety and 19 as a boundary cornerback, just so you know. I really wish I would’ve found his 2013 tape against Louisville and Central Florida as he likely was asked to cover DeVante Parker and Breshad Perriman in those two games. If the Steelers wind up drafting Jones, you can bet that we will do our best to find those two games.
Speaking of Parker and Perriman, would you be mad if the Steelers drafted either if one or both slipped to them in the first round? We know that they know quite a bit about both thanks to pre-draft reports. I have a feeling one of them will wind up being drafted by the Cleveland Browns and perhaps the other goes to the Chicago Bears. Sound about right? I will be shocked if either falls to the Steelers.
The New York Giants almost have to take Brandon Scherff, right? If they do, I’d move him back inside to left guard if I were them.
I’m really meh on the true left tackles in this year’s class. If the Steelers draft a lineman early, I hope it’s a guard with position flexibility. They did attend the Florida and Miami Pro Days, however, so I’m guessing we can’t totally rule out them drafting Ereck Flowers or D. J. Humphries should either still be on the board at 22. Neither were brought in for pre-draft visits, however. Could you imagine the shock of most Steelers fans if either wound up being the pick? Oh, I guess we cant forget Andrus Peat, either.
Vic Beasley to the Atlanta Falcons, right? He’s a perfect LEO for new head coach Dan Quinn, who had Bruce Irvin when he was the Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator. Beasley needs to be in a system where he can mostly get after the quarterback more than worrying about the run.
If the Jacksonville Jaguars draft Leonard Williams, could that spell the end of Ziggy Hood in the state of Florida? Hood is scheduled to earn $3.95 million in 2015 and the Jaguars can cut him without any dead money being involved. You know where I’m going with this, right? If for some reason Hood is cut, would you rather have him or Cam Thomas on the Steelers payroll at $2 million in 2015?
I not sure where that last thought came from.
Eric Rowe sure would look great in the black and gold but I’m not convinced he’s a first-round player. The Steelers brought him in for a pre-draft visit, so I suppose it’s possible he could be a dark horse at No. 22. He won’t turn 23 until October and he started all but one of the 47 games that he played in for Utah. 34 starting assignments came at free safety, three at strong safety and 10 at strong-side cornerback. Now that’s position flexibility. I could see general manager Kevin Colbert saying, “This is a kid we liked and wanted” when explaining why he was drafted in the first-round. He certainly has all of the boxes checked when you talk about Steelers first-round selections. Come to think of it, is it too late to change my final mock draft? I might get sick if Rowe winds up being drafted by the Baltimore Ravens.
Have I mentioned before that I really like Oklahoma tight end Blake Bell? I think there’s a decent chance that he could wind being the best all-around tight end in this year’s draft class when the smoke clears. I sure hope the New England Patriots don’t draft him to go along with Rob Gronkowski.
Like most of you, I sure hope the Steelers come out of the first four rounds with two cornerbacks. The four mid-round prospects I like are Steven Nelson, Doran Grant, Alex Carter and Quinten Rollins. While several have those last two pegged as safeties at the NFL level, I think both can play cornerback in the Steelers system. If not, then just turn them into free safeties.
I’m interested to see where Max Valles winds up going as he’s very hard to slot when it comes to round and position. Some teams might view him as a 4-3 defensive end while several others a 3-4 outside linebacker. The Steelers brought him in for a visit and he would make a great outside linebacker project if he can be gotten in the fifth-round or later.
Pure speculation on my part, but I think the Steelers will trade up in one of the middle rounds to get a player they want.
Three offensive players and five defensive players sound about right? Does to me.
Finally, the NFL better not release that deflate-gate report on Thursday or Friday. If they do, it will come off as a government report dump on a Friday.
Ok, that’s all for my ramblings, chime in below on them and add a few of your own.
Happy Draft Day!!!