Mike Tomlin Says Steelers Weren’t Willing To Trade Anything More Than Day 3 Pick: ‘We Had A High Level Of Preparedness’

The Pittsburgh Steelers traded up to the No. 14 overall selection from their No. 17 spot in the 2023 NFL Draft, moving up to select Georgia offensive tackle Broderick Jones. In a Thursday night press conference, Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin and general manager Omar Khan talked about what compelled to give up a fourth-round pick, at No. 120 overall, to move up and draft Jones.

Tomlin said that in an effort to trade up, the team wasn’t willing to part with anything more than a Day 3 pick.

“The scenarios are countless. We had a high level of preparedness. Obviously, we weren’t willing to mortgage anything above a third-day pick. (Jones) got within range, there had been a run at his position. There were some teams potentially in front of us that may have had an interest in the position. It was a player that we coveted, so we did what we needed to do to secure the player,” Tomlin said via

The team held onto both of its second-round picks and its third-round pick to move up three spots and take Jones.

“We were prepared with what we believed clubs behind us and in front of us were interested in and what their needs are,” Khan said. “It just sort of worked out. It was more about us really wanting the player. We found someone that was willing to trade, at the value we were comfortable with. The value was right for us in the trade.”

The price to move up three spots to ensure the Steelers got their guy really wasn’t hefty. The long-term question will be whether taking Jones over Oregon cornerback Christian Gonzalez was the right move. The Steelers brass, which met with Jones for a Pro Day dinner, sure seemed excited about the pick and bolstering the tackle position.

Jones played left tackle at Georgia, and that is the position he’ll most likely play in the NFL. If he does become a Day One starter, he’ll likely bump incumbent Dan Moore Jr. to swing tackle.

Following the trade up, the Steelers don’t have any picks in the fourth, fifth or sixth rounds. With them holding two second-round picks, at No. 32 and No. 49 overall, a trade back tomorrow night on Day 2 seems somewhat likely just so Pittsburgh can recoup or add some middle-round picks. For tonight, the focus is rightly on Jones, and it was worth it to move up for just a fourth-rounder. But in a draft class that’s been lauded for its depth, the Steelers should find a way to get some picks in the middle rounds.

In Omar Khan’s first draft, he chose the aggressive route to move up, get his guy, and try to build the next great Steelers offensive line with a supremely athletic tackle. It’s an exciting night to be a Steelers fan.

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