NFL Draft

Study: What The Steelers Look For In Drafting Wide Receivers

For the fourth year, we’re looking at the Pittsburgh Steelers draft history to determine who the best fits are for the current draft class. Using the measurables of the players they’ve drafted, we can attempt to predict who they’ll be most interested in for 2019. And also who they might not be interested in selecting.

An imperfect, inexact science of course but another piece of the puzzle we can add. Each year, we update it based on the selections made in the previous draft.

Before we start, some of the caveats I like to mention up front. For any timed event, 40 yard dash or shuttle time, I go only off Combine data. Pro Day numbers can be all over the place; the time announced often is different than what an individual organization clocks and we know these numbers are notoriously favorable to the players. For events with more clear-cut measurables, the bench, broad, and vertical, we’ll use the best number of the Combine or Pro Day.

We’re moving onto the wide receivers for today’s analysis. James Washington has of course been added to the list.

2018: James Washington

Height: 5’11
Weight: 213
40 Time: 4.54
Vertical: 34.5
Broad: 10’0″
Short Shuttle: 4.32
Three Cone: 7.11
Bench: 14
Hand Size: 9 3/4

2017: JuJu Smith-Schuster

Height: 6’1/2
Weight: 215
40 Time: 4.54
Vertical: 33.5
Broad: 10’3″
Short Shuttle: N/A
Three Cone: N/A
Bench: 15
Hand Size: 10 1/2

2016: Demarcus Ayers

Height: 5’9/3
Weight: 182
40 Time: 4.72
Vertical: 35
Broad: 10’3”
Short Shuttle N/A
Three Cone: N/A
Hand Size: 9 1/4
Bench: N/A

2015: Sammie Coates

Height: 6’1/2
Weight: 212
40 Time: 4.43
Vertical: 41.5
Broad: 10’11”
Short Shuttle 4.06
Three Cone: 6.98
Bench: 23
Hand Size: 9 3/8

2014: Martavis Bryant 

Height: 6’3/6
Weight: 211
40 Time: 4.42
Vertical: 39
Broad: 10’4″
Short Shuttle 4.15
Three Cone: 7.18
Bench: 16
Hand Size: 9 1/2

2013: Markus Wheaton

Height: 5’11
Weight: 189
40 Time: 4.45
Vertical: 37
Broad: 10’0″
Short Shuttle 4.02
Three Cone: 6.80
Bench: 20
Hand Size: 9 1/8

Justin Brown

Height: 6’3/1
Weight: 207
40 Time:  4,60
Vertical: 30.5
Board: 9’9″
Short Shuttle N/A
Three Cone: N/A
Bench: 8

2012: Toney Clemons

Height: 6’2/1
Weight: 210
40 Time: 4.40
Vertical: 36
Broad: 10’8″
Short Shuttle N/A
Three Cone: N/A
Bench: 11

2010: Emmanuel Sanders

Height: 5’10/7
Weight: 186
40 Time: 4.41
Vertical: 39.5
Broad: 10’6″
Short Shuttle 4.10
Three Cone: 6.64
Bench: 12

Antonio Brown

Height: 5’10/1
Weight: 186
40 Time: 4.57
Vertical: 33.5
Broad: 8’9″
Short Shuttle 4.18
Three Cone: 6.98
Bench: 13

2009: Mike Wallace 

Height: 6’0/3
Weight: 199
40 Time: 4.33
Vertical: 40
Broad: 10’9″
Short Shuttle 4.27
Three Cone: 6.90
Bench: 14

2008: Limas Sweed

Height: 6’3/7
Weight: 215
40 Time: 4.55
Vertical: 37.5
Broad: 10’8″
Short Shuttle N/A
Three Cone: N/A
Bench: N/A

2007: Dallas Baker

Height: 6’3/1
Weight: 208
40 Time: 4.49
Vertical: 36
Broad: 10’9″
Short Shuttle 4.19
Three Cone: 6.69
Bench: N/A

The only criteria I’m changing – adding, really – is a hand size requirement of at least nine inches. Everything else remains the same.

Height: 5’10+ (12 of 13 players drafted)
Weight: 180+ (13 of 13)
40 Time: 4.57 (11 of 13)
Vert: 35+(10 of 13)
Broad: 10+ (11 of 13)
Hand Size: 9+ (9/9)
Sub 4.3 short shuttle (7 of 8)
Sub 7.0 three cone (6 of 8)
Bench: 10+ (9 of 10)

Here are the names who check every box.

Name/School Height Weight Hand Size 40 Time Bench Vert Broad SS 3 Cone
Miles Boykin/ND 6’3/6 220 9 7/8 4.42 12 43.5 11’8″ 4.07 6.77
Ashton Dulin/MU 6’1/3 215 9 4.43 13 38 10’1″ 4.22 7.00
Bisi Johnson/CSU 6’0/4 204 10 3/8 4.51 14 38 10’4″ 4.16 6.88
Stanley Morgan/NEB 6’0 202 9 7/8 4.53 14 38.5 10’5″ 4.13 6.78
Darius Slayton/AUB 6’1 190 10 4.39 11 40.5 11’3″ 4.15 7.00
David Sills/WVU 6’3/2 211 10 4.57 14 37.5 10’0″ 4.28 6.97

As always, I like to post the prospects who missed in just one category.

Parris Campbell/Ohio State: Three Cone
Gary Jennings/West Virginia: Three Cone
Terry McLaurin/Ohio State: Three Cone
Dillon Mitchell/Oregon: Three Cone
Deebo Samuel/South Carolina: Three Cone
Cody Thompson/Toledo: Broad

Obviously, a lot of players missing out on the three cone, several of them by fractions of a second (McLaurin 7.01, Samuel 7.02) while Campbell and Mitchell didn’t test. Thompson missed the broad by one inch.

Sills is a player the team reportedly “loves” and attended his Pro Day. With those measurables, it’s easy to see why. Boykin and Mitchell have been brought in for visits, too while Darryl Drake attended the Rockets’ Pro Day.

One last note. Wake Forest’s Greg Dortch might be the first player to miss in every single category, though in part due to him not testing at the Combine. But he misses in all the measurables, too. Which means there’s a 100% chance the team drafts him.

To Top
error: Alert: Content is protected !!