For the first time of draft season, I’m drawing up a mock draft. None of these, with the exception of my mock offseason (coming soon!) are done on Fanspeak or any drafting website. All based off my best guess of who ends up in what round and who fits best for the Steelers. Largely, these mocks are made to reflect what the Pittsburgh Steelers will do, not necessarily what I want them to do.
Every couple of weeks, I’ll come out with an updated version as we get more information on the direction the team is headed in. Here’s the first one. As always, let me know your thoughts in the comments below.
Round One (28th Overall): Justin Reid/FS Stanford – 6’0/4 207
Wrestled with this one. Reid will workout today so we’ll see how he tests, though I think it’ll be strong. Given Kevin Colbert’s discussion about the ILB class, I think they attack it in free agency. If not, then my mock will of course change. So we move to their second biggest need at safety.
Reid is going to be a projection, as I mentioned in my scouting report, but he has the mentality, strength, and ability to track the football. Traits are there to make the transition. Reid, according to everyone who interviewed him at media day, came off as extremely intelligent and personable. Underclassmen from a Power 5 conference with production – that’s essentially what the Steelers have looked for over the last several seasons. Since 2011, the only 1st round senior they’ve drafted was Bud Dupree.
Others Considered: OLB Arden Key, ILB Leighton Vander Esch, TE Hayden Hurst
Round Two (60th Overall): Ogbonnia Okoronwko/OLB Oklahoma – 6’1/5 253
Analysis: This was a tough one, too. He didn’t run well at the Combine but that drops his stock a little bit and makes him an option in the second round. His vert and broad helped save him (38, 10’1″). Healthy amount of production with 17 sacks over the past two seasons and as Dave Bryan pointed out, several high quality ones. He’s got length, the ability to bend the edge, and stood up on his feet enough for me to feel comfortable about a full-time move to playing the edge.
We talk about the Power 5 in the first round but the same holds true in the second. Last time they strayed from the Power 5 in the second? 2004, just as they did in the first, taking Tusculum’s Ricardo Colclough.
Others Considered: OLB Kemoko Turay, S Kyzir White, ILB/OLB Uchenna Nwosu
Round Three (92nd Overall): Troy Fumagalli/TE Wisconsin – 6’4/6 247
There’s no guarantee the Steelers take a tight end, they didn’t last year, but there’s certainly a lot of smoke here. I don’t get on board with the idea but that doesn’t matter in this mock. Fumagalli fits the mold as an old-school blocker in a smashmouth system who can make tough catches in traffic. A higher-ceiling version of Jesse James.
Others Considered: ILB Darius Leonard, RB Rashaad Penny, JOKER Shaquem Griffin
Round Five (146th Overall): Cedrick Wilson Jr./WR Boise State – 6’2/2 197
Analysis: His dad played for the Steelers. And so will his son. A deep threat that doesn’t have the straight-line speed of Martavis Bryant but is the same vertical threat. Good hands, tracks the ball unbelievably well (something Bryant doesn’t do well) and a willing blocker. Replacement Z receiver for when Bryant walks after this year. Averaged 19 YPC in two years with them. He could be in the mix as the team’s kick returner, too.
Others Considered: WR Allen Lazard, WR J’Mon Moore, CB Isaac Yiadom
Round Five (165th Overall): Skai Moore/ILB South Carolina – 6’0/2 226
Analysis: Finally, the Steelers go inside linebacker. I’m waiting on the position based off what I’ve heard from Colbert. He doesn’t view the class as particularly strong and if they find a starter in free agency, it nosedives the need to add to the position (they like Tyler Matakevich a ton, too). Moore has excellent production (351 tackles, 14 INTs) with a good pedigree who probably bottoms out as a successful special teamer. He’ll slide in as the #4/#5 LB.
Others Considered: ILB Tegray Scales, OT Brandon Parker, OLB Garret Dooley
Round Seven (220th Overall): Mark Walton/RB Miami (FL) – 5’9/5 202
Analysis: Sorta similar to Corey Clement last year, a poor Combine workout did a number on a draft stock that was hurting. Walton turned in a poor performance across the board. Coming off a season marred by an ankle injury, and sitting in a deep class, he may not get drafted. But his tape brings plenty that’s impressive. Vision, burst through the hole, ability to win in space, and excellent pass protection. There’s special teams value here on the coverage team, too so he can make a day one impact in the #3 spot that a lot of rookies can’t. Another low-floor player.
Others Considered: WR Braxton Berrios, WR Quadree Henderson, OG Sean Welsh
Round Seven (246th Overall): Joshua Frazier/NT Alabama – 6’2/7 321
Analysis: A more “classic” nose tackle to round things out as the team is likely to replace Daniel McCullers. Going off connections here. His DL coach the last two years was Karl Dunbar, now with the Steelers. A plugger who is far from Javon Hargrave but maybe he can carve out a super-niche role in goal line. #6 DL to begin the year.
Others Considered: OG Dejon Allen, S Jaleel Wadood, CB Grant Haley