With nearly two weeks remaining until the 2019 NFL Draft gets underway, ESPN analyst Todd McShay is ramping up his mock game. On Tuesday, McShay released a complete three-round mock with himself acting as the decision-maker for all 32 teams. He considers this his ‘Grade: A’ mock draft of 2019.
As for McShay’s four selections for the Steelers, he has them picking Washington cornerback Byron Murphy in the first-round, Michigan edge rusher Chase Winovich in the second-round and Notre Dame wide receiver Miles Boykin and running back Justin Hill with the two third-round selections the team currently owns. Below is McShay’s summary of the four picks he made for the Steelers.
Murphy has the best ball skills of the corners in the class, and despite signing Steven Nelson, the Steelers need playmakers at that position. Winovich is a twitchy, versatile pass-rusher, and with Antonio Brown gone, Boykin provides another option in the passing game. Hill and his 4.40 speed would jive nicely with James Conner’s running style in a reborn Pittsburgh offense.
Overall, McShay’s four players he mocked to the Steelers are believable. Murphy, who should need no introduction to Steelers fans at this point in the pre-draft process, was recently brought in for a visit after Steelers general manage Kevin Colbert and head coach Mike Tomlin both failed to attend his pro day.
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.
Winovich is also a player the Steelers have had some level of interest in during the pre-draft process while having a large contingent at the Michigan pro day. Last season at Michigan, Winovich registered 15.5 total tackles for losses and five sacks. His best college season came in 2017, nearly touching 20 tackles for losses and 8.5 sacks, both single-season highs for him. At the combine, Winovich measured in at 6026, 256-pounds with 32 3/4-inch arms and 10-inch hands. He ran his 40-yard-dash in 4.59-seconds, did 18 reps on the bench and posted a vertical jump of 30.5-inches to go along with a 9’8″ broad jump. His short shuttle time was 4.11-seconds while his 3-cone time was 6.94-seconds.
Boykin is yet another player the Steelers have shown visible interest in during the pre-draft process. Not only was Colbert at the Notre Dame pro day this year, the Steelers have since brought Boykin in for a pre-draft visit after he measured in at the annual scouting combine at 6036, 220-pounds. He ran his 40-yard-dash in 4.42-seconds while in Indianapolis and also registered a vertical jump of 43.5-inches, a broad jump of 11’8″ and ran the short-shuttle in 4.07-seconds. Boykin’s 3-cone was also impressive at 6.77-seconds. Mostly an X-receiver at Notre Dame, Boykin registered 77 total receptions for 1,206 yards and 11 touchdowns in the 37 games that he played in. 59 of those receptions for 872 yards and 8 touchdowns came this past season. 37 of his college catches gained 15 yards or more and 11 of them resulted in gains of 25 yards or more.
As for Hill, the Steelers certainly appear set to draft another running back this year and while Hill has not been in for a pre-draft visit, the Steelers probably already know a good deal about him already after scouting former Oklahoma State quarterback Mason Rudolph and wide receiver James Washington a year ago. Hill, who measured in at the combine at 5095, 198-pounds with 31 5/8-inch arms and 9 1/2-inch hands, ran his 40-yard-dash in Indianapolis in 4.40-seconds and did 21 reps on the bench. He also posted a vertical jump of 40-inches to go along with a 10’10” broad jump. At Oklahoma State, Hill rushed for 3,539 yards and 3 touchdowns on 632 total carries. He also had 40 total receptions in three seasons for 304 yards and a touchdown.