Being as Pittsburgh Steelers starting running back Le’Veon Bell is currently slated to serve a three-game suspension at the start of the 2015 season, head coach Mike Tomlin was asked Monday during his pre-draft press conference if that might have any bearing on how the team approaches the upcoming 2015 NFL Draft when it comes to that particular position. Tomlin’s answer wasn’t surprising.
“Nothing has changed in terms of our mindset with what we need to do at the position,” said Tomlin. “We needed to add quality depth to the position. We talked about that, I think at the very beginning of the offseason. We talked about the venues in which we could do that, whether it was through free agency and/or the draft. We have DeAngelo [Williams], we’re excited about that, but we also got the draft this weekend and we may go with ‘and’ as opposed to ‘or’. So from that standpoint, it’s had very little effect on our approach.”
The Steelees wasted no time in adding DeAngelo Williams during the start of free agency after the veteran was released by the Carolina Panthers and he’s expected to start the first three games of the season while Bell serves his suspension.
The Steelers do have questions about their depth behind Williams, however, as second-year inexperienced players Dri Archer and Josh Harris are both currently slated to be the backups to open the season. The Steelers did not bring any running backs in for pre-draft visits over the course of the last month, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they wont add one during the draft.
It will be surprising, however, if they use one of their first few draft picks on a running back as general manager Kevin Colbert stated Monday that this year’s class of ball-carriers is a deep one.