The pick is in.
The 2023 NFL Draft is Omar Khan’s first year as the general manager and like in past years we evaluate the value of each pick. Based on projections for each player by draft outlets as well as our own reports we want to see if the pick’s value is above or below how they were ranked coming into the draft.
Round 7 (Pick 251) – Spencer Anderson OL Maryland
During free agency the team made moves to add to the offensive line in Isaac Seumalo and Nate Herbig. Despite those additions, throughout the pre-draft period, the Steelers spent a lot of time looking at interior offensive linemen. It took until day three, but they finally added a guard to add even more competition to the group.
Lance Zierlein at NFL.com gave Anderson a 5.67 grade (Candidate For Bottom Of Roster Or Practice Squad). He considered the 6’4”, 305 lbs. player a priority free agent and concluded he was a “Versatile interior offensive line prospect with starting experience at guard, center and tackle. Anderson has the size but is missing the length to play tackle, where he looks most at ease in pass protection. He will likely enter camp as a center/guard prospect with below-average athletic traits as a move blocker and a lack of drive power when firing out. The versatility is a plus, but he will need to shine as either a run blocker or pass protector to make a team.”
Dane Brugler had as the 21st prospect among centers in his draft guide, The Beast. He did not have a write up on him.
CBS.com had Anderson 156th player on its board and the number 16 tackle. They gave him “a chance to start” and compared him to Jamil Douglas, who transitioned to a guard in the NFL. They noted he had three sacks allowed in 515 snaps in 2022 and summarized him by saying, “Spencer Anderson is a lineman with exposure to tackle but is best suited playing on the interior. He lacks the arc speed to challenge NFL rushers and is susceptible to motion across his face. Anderson plays with a strong base and does a good job of adjusting his hands when engaged. He has a good understanding of angles and sealing run lanes. His lateral mobility and recovery speed will present challenges.”
Pro Football Network’s profile classified Anderson as a center prospect, listing his strengths as, “Hard-working center who gets the most from his ability. Fires off the snap, is explosive at the point, and always looks for someone to hit. Sets with a wide base, starts with good knee bend, and stays square. Keeps his head on a swivel and works well with teammates. Strong, anchors in pass protection, and smothers opponents.
“His weaknesses included limited upside and struggle while blocking on the move and closed out saying, “Anderson is a tough, intelligent lineman who plays nasty football, yet he’s an average athlete. He’s a small-area blocker who has experience at both center and guard, which enhances his next-level potential.”
Overall, the Steeler stuck to the program regarding positions they focused on prior to the draft. Anderson gives them competition for the backup center position. From the consensus of reviews, it would seem he has an uphill climb. A seventh-round pick obviously will have trouble making the team but based on the Steelers’ recent seventh-round picks many have stuck around. Judging the pick based on rankings, comments and opinions I will give this pick a value of solid.