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Importance Of Pre Draft Visits “Three-Pronged,” Per Tomlin

It’s late March and we’re only a month away from the 2017 NFL Draft. It’ll be impossible to know who the Pittsburgh Steelers will take in any round but one of the strongest indicators over the last decade is looking at the list of pre-draft visitors the team brings in. Last year, three players from that list were drafted – Sean Davis, Javon Hargrave, and Jerald Hawkins. And generally speaking, you can bet anywhere from 2-4 players will become Steelers.

Sitting down with Missi Matthews over on Steelers.com, Mike Tomlin spoke to the value of those visits and what he and the team tries to learn in those meetings.

“There’s really three prongs that are getting done in the draft visit. There’s gaining medical information, or additional medical information regarding the player. It’s gaining a football understanding of them. How they understand the game, how they communicate the game, how they play the game. And the other element is getting to know them, the person. Analyzing their background, where they come from, issues they may or may not be dealing with. Those are the three core things we’re trying to get done in a visit. Depending on who the player is, some are weighted differently than others based on their portfolio.”

Every NFL club is allowed to bring in 30 non-local prospects for visits, where the team is allowed to do mostly everything except put the player through a workout (that can happen elsewhere, usually back at a player’s college campus).

I was going to do a post breaking down all the players drafted by the team brought in for a visit but Depot reader┬áJT seemed to do the legwork for us yesterday. Here’s the list he has and thank you very much JT for the work.

This data goes back from the 2008 season. For the record, I am removing Pro Day dinners from the list but it should be noted Bud Dupree and Artie Burns both wined and dined with the Steelers.

By round:
1st. – Three
2nd. – Five
3rd. – Four
4th. – Five
5th. – Five
6th. – Six
7th. – Four

2016 – Three:
2. Sean Davis
3. Javon Hargrave
4. Jerald Hawkins

2015 – Four:
2. Senquez Golson
3. Sammie Coates
4. Doran Grant
5. Jesse James (Reported Only)

2014 – Four:
1. Ryan Shazier
2. Stephon Tuitt
4. Martavis Bryant
7. Rob Blanchflower

2013 – Five:
1. Jarvis Jones
4. Shamarko Thomas
5. Terry Hawthorne
6. Justin Brown
6. Vince Williams

2012 – Four:
2. Mike Adams
7. Tony Clemons
7. David Paulson
7. Kelvin Beachum

2011 – Four:
2. Marcus Gilbert
3. Curtis Brown
4. Cortez Allen
6. Keith Williams

2010 – Three:
1. Maurkice Pouncey
3. Emmanuel Sanders
6. Antonio Brown

2009 – Four:
5. Joe Burnett
5. Frank Summers
6. Ra’Shon Harris
7. AQ Shipley

2008 – Two:
5. Dennis Dixon
6. Ryan Mundy

Last thing. Here is the 2017 list of pre-draft visits. We know seven of them so far.

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