A mock draft without quarterbacks? That seems to be a thing now and for the love of me, I just don’t understand why. That said, NFL Network analytics expert Cynthia Frelund released her second 2022 NFL mock draft on Thursday, and in this offering, she purposefully left out the quarterback position. Below is the reason she gave for doing so.
“Admittedly, this is HIGHLY unlikely to occur on April 28. This league is just too quarterback-obsessed, with a number of teams looking for a long-term solution at the position. In fact, my models — which estimate where players will actually go — put the odds that at least three quarterbacks are drafted in the first round at 71.1 percent, and four at 58.6 percent.
But in the following exercise, the game’s most important position is completely absent from Round 1, providing a different-looking rundown than you’re accustomed to — which is fine! Use this mock as an opportunity to weigh short-term vs. long-term strategies.”
So, with no quarterbacks being mocked in the first round, Frelund for a second consecutive time has the Pittsburgh Steelers selecting Central Michigan tackle Bernhard Raimann at 20th overall. Below is her reasoning for doing so.
“Same pick as last time around in this slot. Especially with more certainty at the quarterback position, addressing the line is the biggest win-share mover for the Steelers.”
Frelund mocking Raimann to the Steelers and really thinking such a prediction will come true is way out there. For starters, Central Michigan is not from a Power 5 Conference school, and that is very important to the Steelers and their first-round selections who are not quarterbacks. Secondly, Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert did not attend the Central Michigan Pro Day on March 14th, and that’s yet another strike against Raimann possibly being the Steelers’ first-round selection this year. For whatever it is worth, area scout Dan Colbert was at the Central Michigan Pro Day.
While not as big of deal overall, the last time the Steelers drafted a tackle in the first round was in 1996 with the selection being Jamain Stephens. Obviously, that was a few years before Colbert arrived in Pittsburgh. It would be quite the headline if Colbert drafted a tackle in the first round this year, his last as the Steelers’ general manager.
So, more about Raimann, who measured in at this year’s scouting combine at 6061, 303 pounds with 32 7/8-inch arms and 10 1/4-inch hands. He ran his 40-yard dash in 5.05 seconds and did 30 reps on the bench to go along with a vertical jump of 30.5 inches and a broad jump of 9’9″. His short shuttle time was 4.49 seconds, and his 3-cone time was 7.46 seconds.
Raimann moved to left tackle from tight end in the spring of 2020 but only got in three practices at his new position before COVID-19 shut workouts down. The team only played six games that season, giving him about a season and a half of experience ahead of this year’s draft. He was at the Senior Bowl this year and represented himself well overall.
According to Pro Football Focus, Raimann only allowed one sack in his career once he moved to tackle. His 94.6 grade from PFF in 2021 was the highest in the country by a left tackle.
Raimann will turn 25 years old during his rookie season, however, as he was an Austrian exchange student, who completed mandatory military service time.
While Raimann is likely to be a first-round draft pick this year, it’s really hard to envision the Steelers being the team to select him.
Of the players Frelund mocked to other teams after Raimann to the Steelers, Georgia linebacker Nakobe Dean would be the more logical choice, as he checks several boxes when it comes to him potentially being the team’s first-round selection in 2022.