While we don’t know where Kevin Colbert and Mike Tomlin landed for today’s Pro Day workouts, we have some additional insight in the players they were keeping a close eye on at previous stops. In Tony Pauline’s most recent podcast, The Calm Before The Storm, he noted a trio of linebackers Colbert reportedly likes quite a bit.
The first is the most obvious. The team is taking a serious-as-a-heart-attack look at Michigan’s Devin Bush. From Pauline:
“A Michigan coach right after the Pro Day, it looked like the Pittsburgh Steelers had ten coaches and scouts on hand for the Michigan Pro Day. They were all crowding around Bush the entire workout. While the number of Steelers personnel people on hand was probably an exaggeration, his point was not lost on me. And that is all signs point to the Pittsburgh Steelers selecting Devin Bush in the first round if he’s available to them.”
To be honest, that head count of ten might be entirely accurate. We counted eight members of the organization who made the trip, including Colbert, Tomlin, and ILBs coach Jerry Olsavsky. Throw in an extra scout or two we missed and you get to ten representatives.
Of course, Pauline’s last point is the most critical. Will Bush be there? The odds don’t seem strong right now of him falling to 20, though you can’t rule anything out. Bud Dupree and David DeCastro weren’t expected to fall as far as they did.
So he added a note that if the team can’t draft Bush, Colbert is smitten with a pair of Texas A&M linebackers.
“I’m told the team likes both Aggie linebackers Tyrel Dodson and Otaro Alaka. So I can see if the Steelers lose out on Devin Bush in round one, maybe targeting Tyrel Dodson the second day of the draft.”
It’s true Colbert, and it was a mild surprise, showed up at the A&M Pro Day. There’s no first round prospect coming out of there this year, at least not one at a position of need (center Erik McCoy is a borderline Day One pick) so showing up there must mean he really liked one of their prospects. And it appears to be Dodson and Alaka.
At the Combine, Dodson weighed in at 6’0 237 and ran a 4.6 40 yard dash while jumping 9’10” in the broad and put up 24 reps on the bar. He jumped 35 inches at his Pro Day. Last year, he recorded 70 tackles (7 TFL) with a 78 yard INT returned for a touchdown. He picked off three passes as a sophomore the year before.
Alaka turned in a poorer 40, a 4.82 but is also a bigger body at 6’3 239. He did impress with a 36 inch vert and 10’11” in the broad. As a 5th year senior, he racked up 79 tackles, 14 of those for a loss, with four sacks. He is projected to be taken late on Day Three.