The Pittsburgh Steelers head into the second day of the 2016 NFL Draft with several needs on the defensive side of football even though they addressed one of them Thursday night with the selection of Miami cornerback Artie Burns with the 25th overall pick in round-one. With that said, below are some possible Friday targets for the Steelers when it comes to players they might ultimately select in the second and third-rounds.
Should the Steelers decide to address their defensive line sometime Friday night, they should be able to do thanks to several players they’ve already been linked to still being on the board. While they might not fall to the Steelers in the second round, Baylor defensive tackle Andrew Billings and Alabama defensive tackle A’Shawn Robinson both failed to hear their names called Thursday night. Additionally, South Carolina State defensive tackle Javon Hargrave, who made a pre-draft visit to Pittsburgh during the month of April, could fall to the Steelers in the second round.
Should the Steelers decide to address the safety position Friday night, they figure to have a shot at a few players who visited with the team this past month. That list includes Ohio State product Vonn Bell, Boise State’s Darian Thompson, Duke’s Jeremy Cash, Maryland’s Sean Davis and Justin Simmons, who played his college football at Boston College. Of that group of players, I’m hoping that Simmons or Thompson wind up being selected by the Steelers.
Like it or not, the Steelers might decide to draft a wide receiver Friday night. While Oklahoma’s Sterling Shepard might not fall to them in the second round, it would be very hard for them to pass him up should that ultimately wind up being the case. Additionally, South Carolina’s Pharoh Cooper, Pittsburgh’s Tyler Boyd and Ohio State’s Braxton Miller all could potentially be day-two targets for the Steelers.
Should the Steelers be in the market for a day-two outside linebacker, Eastern Kentucky’s Noah Spence and Georgia’s Jordan Jenkins appear to be worthy targets. Spence, however, is likely to hear his name called prior to the Steelers second-round selection. It should be noted, however, that neither of those two players were brought to Pittsburgh for pre-draft visits.
Over the course of the last several years, quite a few of the Steelers second-round draft picks wound up being players who made pre-draft visits to Pittsburgh, so that’s something to pay close attention to.
As usual, we’ll be fully covering the draft throughout the night and early Saturday morning and we invite all of you to come along for the ride.