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Steelers Address O-Line In CBS Mock Draft

Offensive linemen and Pittsburgh Steelers’ mock drafts. A pairing you’re going to see quite a bit over the next four months. CBS’ Chris Trapasso continued that trend, mocking the Steelers Northwestern OT Peter Skoronski with the 13th pick of the 2023 NFL Draft. Explaining the pick, Trapasso writes:

“Skoronski is a pass-pro wizard, but he may not have top-10 caliber athletic gifts. The Steelers will gladly pick him here at No. 13 overall.”

Skoronski is CBS’ 6th best prospect and top offensive tackle in this year’s draft.

Under new GM Omar Khan and assistant GM Andy Weidl, the Steelers figure to focus heavily on upgrading and improving their trench play. In Philadelphia, Weidl helped build and revive the Eagles from the inside/out and they now have among the best offensive and defensive lines in football.

In Pittsburgh, the left side of the offensive line is far more likely to be upgraded than the right side. LG Kevin Dotson is as inconsistent as they come with repeated mental errors while LT Dan Moore Jr. has progressed but isn’t a franchise-caliber left tackle who struggles with power and bull rushes. As Trapasso notes, Skoronski isn’t the most athletic tackle in the draft but he’s been highly effective at Northwestern. A three-year starter, he’s expected to declare for the draft after the season and be one of the first offensive linemen taken.

While the top tackle falling to #13 seems unusual, a QB-heavy class is pushing down all the other names. In this mock, a whopping four quarterbacks are off the board in the top nine selections. If that scenario plays out on draft day, it’ll be the first time that’s occurred since – get this – 1949. The weight of that position pushes down the rest of the names and factoring in other blue-chip prospects being taken off the board like Alabama EDGE Will Anderson, Georgia DL Jalen Carter, and Georgia CB Kelee Ringo, a talent like Skoronski slips through the cracks.

If drafted, he’d likely play left tackle but there’s an argument to be made about trying to shift him to guard. Easier said than done and the idea of simply “moving a guy” is more nuanced than that but he wouldn’t be the first tackle to move to guard. A lack of size, ideal length, and athleticism may compel teams to want him to play guard similar to what names like Cody Whitehair and Forrest Lamp have done over the years with mixed and middling results.

While we’ll have a full scouting report on Skoronski in the coming months, our Jonathan Heitritter spotlighted him back in September, writing;

“He is technically sound when it comes to run blocking and pass protection combining his emphasis on fundamentals along with the effort on each play to execute his job into a noteworthy performance {against Notre Dame].”

With the Steelers likely holding a top-15 pick when the season ends, Skoronski figures to be a name in the conversation leading up to draft day.

In the top-five of this mock, Alabama QB Bryce Young goes #1 to Houston. That’s followed by EDGE Will Anderson #2 to Seattle, DL Jalen Carter #3 to Chicago, Ohio State QB C.J. Stroud #4 to Detroit, and Clemson DL Myles Murphy #5 to Philadelphia. Again, check out the whole mock by clicking the link here.

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