It looks like Peter Schrager of the NFL Network may have his final mock draft of 2021 submitted and his latest offering, his second one of the offseason, has quite an interesting selection when it comes to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
After mocking Alabama center Landon Dickerson to the Steelers at 24 in his first mock draft of 2021, Schrager now has them taking Georgia cornerback Eric Stokes in his most recent offering. Below is his reasoning for mocking Stokes to the Steelers this time around.
There hasn’t been as much press for Stokes as we’ve seen for some of the other top corners in this draft, but he can definitely play. Perhaps the fastest CB in this class, he can cover a ton of ground. Pittsburgh could address its run game woes in Rounds 2-4.
Stokes, who measured in at his Georgia pro day 6005, 194-pounds with 32 3/4-inch arms and 9 1/8-inch hands, reportedly ran his 40-yard-daash in 4.31-seconds and did 14 reps on the bench. The underclassman cornerback also logged a vertical jump of 38 1/2-inches at his pro day and a 10’08” broad jump to go along with a short-shuttle time of 4.36-seconds and a 3-cone time of 6.96-seconfds. His RAS score from his pro day was a stellar 9.38.
For his college career, Stokes registered 78 total tackles, a sack, four interceptions and 22 passes defensed. He also forced a fumble. The young cornerback also retuned two of his four interceptions that he had in 2020 for touchdowns.
Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert and head coach Mike Tomlin were both at the Georgia pro day this year along with new secondary coach Grady Brown, so that’s all worth noting.
For whatever its worth, Gil Brandt of the NFL.com has Stokes ranked 41st overall on his latest top 100 players list ahead of the 2021 NFL Draft.
The Steelers certainly haven’t made a habit of drafting cornerbacks in the first round since Colbert arrived in Pittsburgh in 2000. In fact, the only cornerback that the Steelers have drafted in the first round in the last 23 years was Artie Burns in 2016. Burns, however, was essentially a first-round bust.
In closing, it would be quite surprising to see the Steelers draft a cornerback in the first round this year. If they do, however, Stokes has a better than average chance of being that cornerback.
Below is the link to the pre draft profile our own Tom Mead did on Stokes.