It’s another busy day for the Pittsburgh Steelers’ pre-draft visit process. According to Steelers.com’s Dale Lolley, the team is bringing in three more names for a Tuesday visit. The three are: Maryland CB Deonte Banks, N.C. State OG Chandler Zavala, and NC State S Tanner Ingle.
Banks is the headline name here, a potential first-round pick and one of the top cornerbacks in a deep class. He’s a popular name mocked to Pittsburgh as early as #17 for his physicality, size, speed, and ability to defend the vertical game. During his college career, he broke up 11 passes and picked off two, not seeing consistent playing time until this past season.
In our pre-draft scouting report, here’s how we concluded Banks’ game.
“Given his tightness, he’s an ideal fit in a Cover 3 scheme where he can carry and match routes vertically while not having to break down and defend in-cuts. He can use his closing speed and size to drive on comebacks and curls and keep a lid over the top. Banks is more of a linear athlete with clear talent and hasn’t played a ton of football over the last three years, just 19 games, so there should be more meat on the bone when it comes to rounding out his play.”
We gave him a second-round grade. Pittsburgh didn’t have heavy attendance at the Maryland Pro Day, only sending scout Mike Butler, so seeing Banks come in for a visit reaffirms their interest.
Zavala was considered one of this year’s biggest Combine snubs. A transfer from Fairmont State, he was granted a sixth year of eligibility in 2022 after suffering a back injury that caused him to miss the latter half of his 2021 season. At his Wolfpack Pro Day, he posted strong numbers and finished with a nearly chart-topping RAS score.
In our scouting report, we wrapped up his game by writing:
“This dude is strong and locks on to defenders allowing him to sustain his blocks. He stuns players with his hands and moves people in the ground game. His best fit is in a Gap/Power running scheme but can execute in Zone with a little help. In the passing game, he would be most effective using quick and jump sets to get his hands on pass rushers as soon as possible. He seems to have only played left guard so I don’t know if he can play on the right side.”
It’s also worth noting Steelers offensive line coach Pat Meyer made the trip to N.C. State to watch Zavala and center Grant Gibson workout. Zavala now coming in for a visit is certainly notable and probably means Meyer was impressed with his overall Pro Day workout. His draft range is a bit difficult to predict but he could sneak into the later stages of Day Two.
Ingle has flown under the radar throughout the pre-draft process. A team captain, he racked up 311 career tackles (23 for a loss) with three interceptions and three forced fumbles. Last year, he had 83 tackles (eight for a loss) with two picks and two pass deflections. Known as a hard-hitting safety, he packs a punch despite his smaller frame at a listed 5’9, 182, with the versatility to play multiple positions in the secondary. He has experience playing nickel and free safety. We’ll have a full pre-draft profile on him before the draft kicks off later this month.
Check out our reports on Banks and Zavala below.