As we’ve written here at Steelers Depot time and time again post-2022 NFL Draft, the consensus with the Pittsburgh Steelers’ draft haul is that there is no consensus, one way or another, regarding the seven players the Steelers and General Manager Kevin Colbert selection over the a three-day span last weekend.
Some national media members have praised the Steelers’ draft class for grabbing high-end, ready-now talent led by the likes of Kenny Pickett and George Pickens, while others have lamented the Steelers’ decision to take a quarterback with a limited ceiling and a wide receiver with perceived maturity issues.
The Steelers clearly feel great about the selection of both guys that will ultimately make or break the 2022 draft class for the black and gold. So too — surprisingly — does CBS Sports Radio and NFL.com columnist Adam Schein, who highlighted the Steelers’ draft haul as one of his top classes in the 2022 NFL Draft, according to his latest column that dropped Monday.
“Say what you will about this quarterback class as a whole, but Kenny Pickett was a steal at No. 20 overall,” Schein writes. “The Steelers searched far and wide for Ben Roethlisberger‘s heir, but wisely came back to the signal-caller who played his college ball at Heinz Field. The Pitt product was always the perfect fit, and Kevin Colbert nailed it in his last draft as Steelers GM. As the most pro-ready passer in this class, Pickett’s going to beat out Mitch Trubisky and start for Pittsburgh in Year 1.
“Colbert has an extensive history of finding stud receivers beyond Round 1 — SEE: Antonio Brown, Mike Wallace, Emmanuel Sanders, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Diontae Johnson and Chase Claypool, to name a few — and I think he did it again on Friday,” Schein added. “I know George Pickens reportedly has maturity issues, but he flashed so much potential when healthy at Georgia. I’ll bet on Pittsburgh maximizing the immense talent in that 6-3 frame.”
Calling Pickett a steal at No. 20 overall, especially after seeing how the rest of the quarterback class shook out — with all the other QBs in the class lasted late into the third round – is quite a take from Schein. That said, it’s clear why the Steelers coveted him and made him the selection at No. 20 overall. They are convinced he’s their man at the position moving forward, so we’ll see how it plays out.
Aside from that, the Pickens selection is certainly one to be high on for outsiders as Pickens was a true first-round-caliber wide receiver prior to tearing his ACL last March, causing him to miss all but the final four games of Georgia’s National Championship season in 2021. He has all the tools, and the perceived maturity issues are seemingly just that — perceived.
Colbert and Co. really did a nice job addressing some holes overall in the draft, even with taking a quarterback in the first round. To hear Schein, who notoriously doesn’t agree with the Steelers, praise the black and gold for doing something good is quite enjoyable as well.