Former NFL general manager and current NFL Network draft analyst Charley Casserly released his second mock draft of 2019 on Tuesday and after previously having the Pittsburgh Steelers taking Georgia cornerback Deandre Baker with the 20th overall selection in the first-round, he now has them picking Washington cornerback linebacker Byron Murphy, instead.
Murphy is an excellent technician at the position, helping to bolster the Steelers’ secondary.
As of the last few weeks, Murphy seems to be the major media’s consensus favorite to be the Steelers first-round selection this year and especially after the team brought the Washington underclassman in recently for a pre-draft visit.
Murphy, who measured in at this year’s scouting combine at 5106, 190-pounds with 30 1/8-inch arms and 8 7/8-inch hands, ran his 40-yard-dash in Indianapolis in 4.55-seconds. He also did 14 reps on the bench at the combine and posted a vertical jump of 36.5-inches to go along with a 10’0″ broad jump. In his two seasons at Washington, Murphy recorded 74 total tackles, 7 interceptions, 20 total pass breakups and 2 forced fumbles.
One minor thing working against the likelihood of Murphy being the Steelers first-round selection this year is the fact that general manager Kevin Colbert didn’t attend his pro day a few weeks ago. The Steelers have a long history dating back to 2009 of only drafting players in the first-round who had Colbert in attendance for their pro day. Other than that, Murphy seems to check a lot of the other necessary boxes of potentially being the Steelers first-round selection this year.
Below are a few of the breakdowns of Murphy we have on the site along with a video from Pro Football Focus in which they explain why the Washington cornerback deserves to be a first-round selection this year.
As for the rest of Casserly’s mock draft, which will likely be his final one this year, it includes several trades in addition to having both LSU linebacker Devin White and Michigan linebacker Devin Bush being selected within the first 11 picks. Casserly also has four quarterbacks being drafted in the first-round of his latest mock and while he also has two tight ends being selected, Iowa’s Noah Fant isn’t one of them. Instead, Casserly has Alabama’s Irv Smith Jr. as the second tight end off the board after Iowa’s T.J. Hockenson.
In case you need reminding, last year Casserly has the Steelers selecting former Alabama linebacker Rashaan Evans 28th overall in his second and final mock draft of 2018.