2013 Draft

2013 Steelers Mock Draft Version 4.0 – Post Pre Draft Visits

Here we go with version 4.0 of my Pittsburgh Steelers mock draft for the upcoming 2013 NFL draft. I didn\’t bore you with a lot of strengths and weaknesses of the players this time around, but certainly will in my final mock draft that will be out next Wednesday. This is pretty much a version to let you know where my head is at with one week to go.

You will notice that there is no quarterback and tight end in this draft, and I do not think that will change in a week. My final mock will include 9 additional players that I considered in each and every round with the goal being to have a list of around 70-80 players to hit all 8 picks with.

************** You know the drill. If you are going to comment in this post please add value to the discussion. The rounds here are not important and you are not helping the discussion exercise by saying “Player X” will not last that long or is being drafted too soon. Please add what you like and dislike about a certain player and feel free to add your own mock as well. Remember, the discussion should be centered around the players, not necessarily the rounds they are drafted. Mock drafts are never perfect, but the value of them is in the discussion about the players. If I feel you are not adding value with your comments I will simply delete them. Go elsewhere if you want to be a nuisance. **************

Links to my previous mock drafts are below:

2013 Steelers Mock Draft Version 1.0 – Post Senior Bowl
2013 Steelers Mock Draft Version 2.0 – Post NFL Combine
2013 Steelers Mock Draft Version 3.0 – Post Pro Days

No video or stats are included in this mock, but these will be included in the final one next week.

Round 1 – Jonathan Cooper – North Carolina

– As I have pointed out several times over the offseason, the Steelers have serious depth issues currently on their offensive line that have yet to be filled. As I have also pointed it, I feel there is a good chance that Cooper could still be on the board when the Steelers pick 17th overall, as it has been 30 years since two “true” guards have been drafted in the first 16 picks of a first round. Not only does this fit the best player available theory, but it also fits a need as Cooper can play all three interior line positions and he might even be able to push Ramon Foster for the starting left guard spot. I still have a week to go to change my mind, but I have been pretty firm on this for a while now.

40

20

10

Bench

5.06

2.89

1.72

35

Vertical

Broad

Shuttle

Cone

27

9\’0″

4.84

7.78

Round 2 – WR Justin Hunter – Tennessee

– The Steelers certainly did have a large contingency at the Tennessee pro day. Hunter is young, big, speedy and productive. If not for the drops, and limited production due to a knee injury in 2011, he very well be getting consideration as a first round selection. The Steelers can certainly double dip at the wide receiver position in this draft, but they have to address the position in the first three rounds regardless. Hunter would make a great first student for new wide receivers coach Richard Mann. If I knew DeAndre Hopkins or Stedman Bailey could fall this far, they would be the choice, but I think both very well could be off the board by the time this pick rolls around.

40

20

10

Bench

4.36

2.52

1.56

Vertical

Broad

Shuttle

Cone

39.5

11\’4″

4.33

Round 3 – OLB Corey Lemonier – Auburn

– This is really the point of the draft where I struggle the most. Do the Steelers want an inside or an outside linebacker here if they were to go guard and wide receiver in rounds one and two. Being as they are a bit thinner outside than they are inside, I will add Lemonier back to my mock once again. Like all outside linebackers with the Steelers, Lemonier will first earn his stripes on special teams and will likely need at least a year and a half of grooming to learn the system. If Jamie Collins were still on the board here, he would be the pick instead.

40

20

10

Bench

4.56

2.59

1.56

27

Vertical

Broad

Shuttle

Cone

33

9\’11”

4.4

7.14

Round 4 – RB Christine Michael – Texas A&M

– Questions about his character exist, but he will fit well in both a zone and man blocking scheme that the Steelers should use plenty of next season. He will need to work on his pass protection and receiving skills, but there shouldn\’t be any doubts that he can at least contribute early as a two down back. The Steelers thought enough of him to send running backs coach Kirby Wilson to his pro day and they also brought him in for a pre draft visit. The good thing about him is that he doesn\’t have a lot of mileage on him. I consider him a high risk, high reward player.

40

20

10

Bench

4.43

2.51

1.49

27

Vertical

Broad

Shuttle

Cone

43

10\’5″

4.02

6.69

Round 5 – SS Shamarko Thomas – Syracuse

– Teams are likely to shy away from Thomas because of his size and the fact that he is only going to fit certain systems. Luckily, the Steelers system, which includes a lot of cover-3 looks with a safety in the box, fits Thomas perfectly. He hits like a linebacker and covers a lot of ground from sideline to sideline. He is very slippery, instinctive and a solid character kid. I am not going to dare compare Thomas to Troy Polamalu, but you can see a few similarities. Remember, it took Polamalu a little time to adjust to the next level and he was a first round draft pick that the Steelers traded up for. The Steelers brought Thomas in for a pre draft visit, so they certainly have interest in him. Can they get him this late. I like the chances.

40

20

10

Bench

4.37

2.49

1.52

28

Vertical

Broad

Shuttle

Cone

40.5

11\’1″

4.26

Round 6 – DE Joe Kruger – Utah

– According to the list of pre draft visits that we have, the Steelers really haven\’t brought in any true 3-4 five technique prospects and that certainly is concerning considering the depth on the roster. Kruger needs development, but he certainly fits what the Steelers look for at the position. He is perhaps two years away from starting, but the bloodline and college tape of him certainly makes him an intriguing prospect. The buzz has picked up on him since I first mentioned him a while ago, so there is a good chance that he might not fall this far as a result. We shall see.

40

20

10

Bench

4.81

2.66

1.66

24

Vertical

Broad

Shuttle

Cone

34

9\’9″

4.46

7.17

Round 6 – CB Will Davis – Utah St.

– Are the Steelers really intending to draft a cornerback? Judging by the amount that they have had in for pre draft visits, it certainly seems that way. I will go ahead and take the bait, but would be surprised if one was drafted in the first five rounds. Davis fits the mold of a later round cornerback that is very raw. This is perfect for defensive backs coach Carnell Lake. Davis\’ lack of elite length makes him a candidate long-term to play in the slot at the nickel position, but he can play outside in a pinch. He would be a special teams player assuming he made the team.

40

20

10

Bench

4.43

2.51

1.5

16

Vertical

Broad

Shuttle

Cone

35.5

10\’7″

4.02

6.52

Round 7 – ILB Michael Mauti – Penn St.

– I can\’t help but to keep Mauti in my mock. This kid is football player and if he can overcome his latest knee injury, he could potentially be the future BUCK linebacker starting as early as 2014. Can the Steelers get him after the draft as an undrafted free agent? Sure, there is a chance, but several teams will certainly be after him. Why risk it if he is still on the board in the seventh round? We shall see if I change my mind in a week on him here.

40

20

10

Bench

4.83

28

Vertical

Broad

Shuttle

Cone

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