A mock draft including RB Najee Harris to the Pittsburgh Steelers isn’t surprising. At this point, it’s predictable and honestly, a little boring. But when draft insiders put together a mock draft, armed with inside information, it’s worth passing their predictions along. Pro Football Network’s Tony Pauline, to me, is as credible as anyone, and has Harris falling to #24. And the Steelers, of course, taking him.
With the 24th pick, Pauline writes:
“They made a mistake passing on J.K. Dobbins last April. Najee Harris is a natural fit and a Day 1 starter.”
The fact Pauline ultimately believes Harris falls to #24 is the most notable part of this mock draft. Because it’s the biggest question heading into Thursday night. If Harris is there, it feels like he’s the guy. If not, the board becomes more open.
The biggest threat to Harris are the Miami Dolphins with that 18th overall pick. In this mock, Pauline has them taking Michigan EDGE Kwity Paye. The New York Jets could also snag Harris, but Pauline has them taking Oklahoma State OT Teven Jenkins. Pauline has reported the Steelers are also interested in drafting Jenkins.
Harris is the only running back to appear in Pauline’s first round mock.
Pauline conducted the first three rounds of the 2021 draft. At #55, he has the Steelers taking Wisconsin-Whitewater center/guard Quinn Meinerz. Pauline has written the team is high on Meinerz despite his small-school status and lack of playtime during the 2020 season. Meinerz would bring nasty and physicality to the Steelers’ O-line, which they’re desperately searching for.
In the third round with pick #87, Pauline mocks Central Arkansas CB Robert Rochell to the Steelers. That’s back-to-back small-schoolers, almost unheard of in the Colbert era. But Rochell played in 2020, unlike a lot of sub-FBS players, and College Scouting Director Phil Kreidler attended his Pro Day. We’ve pegged Rochell as a potential sleeper pick for over a month.