He hasn’t made a draft pick and the Pittsburgh Steelers’ draft board is still weeks away from being assembled. But Kevin Colbert has already won.
See that picture above? That’s his, and all of Steelers’ Nation, reaction right now.
You were probably as floored as I was to hear the Steelers be awarded a third round compensation pick, coming in either at 105 overall. Most of us, myself included, expected a comparatively lowly 5th round pick. But maybe Colbert knew all along what was coming to him. And he constructed the roster to get that pick in stride.
Other teams who got third round picks lost some key pieces they couldn’t immediately replace. Miami got theirs for Oliver Vernon, Baltimore for Kelechi Osemele, the Rams for Rodney McLeod. Marquee free agents enjoying success for their new teams.
The Steelers? Kelvin Beachum and Steve McLendon.
Not, uh, exactly in the same arena as those other names. And yet the Steelers walk away with the same compensation, only a couple picks behind.
And their replacements are better than who they lost. The team turned to Alejandro Villanueva and Javon Hargrave, two guys who are or will end up being better players than the ones they’re replacing.
That’s another near top-100 pick for the Steelers to play around with. It may end any tough choice between a tight end and running back, a back and a wide receiver, or could give the Steelers to option to double-dip at a position like outside linebacker.
It’s such an absurd win for the Steelers it doesn’t even feel like it’s fair.
To recap. The Steelers lost two players, replaced them immediately with better talent, still were able to make a splash in free agency, and got the top compensation possible as their reward.
Way to go, Colbert. Let’s go to Happy Hour. Drinks on me.