Todd McShay Has The Steelers Selecting Notre Dame NT Louis Nix In His First 2014 Mock Draft

ESPN Insider Todd McShay has now released his first 2014 NFL Mock Draft and for what it is worth, I think he is way off base when it comes to who he has the Pittsburgh Steelers selecting.

McShay has the Steelers drafting Notre Dame nose tackle Louis Nix with the 12th overall selection and below is what he has to say about the choice in his analysis of the pick.

Nix might be a little bit of a reach here. He didn’t have a great season in 2013 for the Fighting Irish, and when NFL teams get a look at a couple of bad tapes of his play (he didn’t perform well against Michigan State, in particular) his stock could drop. But I still have a hard time seeing him fall out of the first round, given the way he dominated in 2012. With his size and the way he can move, he has the potential to be a very good player. If the Steelers are comfortable with his durability and work ethic, he could become their new Casey Hampton. Offensive tackle and secondary are two other need areas they could address here.

As we sit here in December, I just cant see the Steelers spending a first-round draft pick on a nose tackle. The team seems to be happy with Steve McLendon, Al Woods and Hebron Fangupo moving forward and with good reason. In addition, there are just too many other holes that need to be filled.

If you listen to the podcast or follow me on Twitter, you already know my early thoughts on the direction that I feel the Steelers should go in the first round. The position is of course wide receiver and a big one if at all possible. McShay doesn’t have a wide receiver coming off the board until pick 13, but he does have six currently going in the first round.

I am a big Kelvin Benjamin fan right now and McShay has him going 27th overall should he ultimately decide to come out. He also has big boy Mike Evans going 20th overall.

This should wet your whistle as far as early draft talk goes, so get busy in the comments below.

I am, I'm me. 40 something, retired and a life long Steelers fan.
  • StarSpangledSteeler

    When I watch the game tape on Nix, I see a big strong kid who does not anchor very well for his size. He doesn’t get low like Casey Hampton did.

    Nix actually reminds me a lot of Ziggy Hood. Strong and nimble but has trouble getting off blocks. Consequently, he dominates small school competition but against elite O-Lineman he gets locked up and driven like he’s on roller skates.

  • Jason

    I’d love to see the O-line continue to gel and improve over the last 2 games and hopefully eliminate the need to go OL in rd 1. Mike Evans would look good in black and gold.

  • Superdriller316

    I’m all for trading back for more picks. We are going to have a lot of holes to fill.

  • Amuzon12

    A nose tackle?…..really? It sounds like Todd McShay has been hanging out with Ian Rapoport. I agree with you Dave. I would like to see a big receiver taken in the first round. After listening to the podcasts and watching some hightlight videos, I like Sammy Watkins. His speed and potential after the catch is what caught my eye.

  • steeltown

    A stud NT would be great, but not in the 1st Rd…. we have 2-3guys capable of playing in the middle and we don’t exactly play base Defense a whole lot these days…. I’d say BPA still applies with an eye toward CB, WR/TE, OL and LB

  • Jonathon Bert Schade

    C.J. Mosley, anyone?

  • Jack

    Why would’nt we draft Watkins? Steelers fans have an obsession over getting a big receiver but why would you pass up on Watkins? The guy has been a stud at Clemson all 3 years. Hes shown hes an elite playmaker and something the steelers need across from AB. Yes Mike Evans and Benjamin had a good year but it was one year.There both big targets but who knows if there fastest enough for the NFL. If the Steelers remain at 12 and Watkins is still there they would be fools to pass up on him. If Watkins is off the board then i agree with superdriller316 to trade back and get more picks.

  • Reg Sayhitodabadguy Hunt

    We have offensive weapons already so our problems are not on that side not saying we cant use a big target or a good olineman BUT with that being said definitly need some secondary help first and foremost then dline that can help get pressure on qb

  • DeepPockets

    I agree with the notion of taking a WR in the first. I do love both Benjamin & Evans; but I think the latter would be the better pick at this point. Evans downfield blocking and route running are better than Benjamin IMO. If not WR, I think the only other place to go in the 1st that makes sense is the secondary and I think Clinton-Dix would be a great pick at safety. Then I think they go CB in the 2nd where I hope Dennard could possibly fall to them.

    I think WR in the first makes the most sense and I agree he needs to be big (<6'2"); but, I wouldn't at all be disappointed in getting the best S in the draft with Clinton-Dix. I think it boils down to what the Steelers do in the draft, BPA.

  • DeepPockets

    I agree that Watkins is the best overall WR in the draft. But, IMO I think a bigger WR would better fit the Steelers needs at this point. Also, whether we like it or not, Ben has always wanted a big target and while he may have little say in the decision, I am willing to bet it is taken into account.

    My personal pick would be Evans; big, strong, good blocker, above average route runner. While you may be right he has only had 1 great year, he has been an absolute monster that would be a great size, strength compliment to both AB & Wheaton’s speed. With all that being said I would be very happy with the Steelers getting Watkins as he has been consistently great throughout his college career.

  • mlc43

    I don’t like either of the players mentioned by them. A lot of who we draft is going to be determined by where we pick. I’m sorry I stated the obvious there guys. Anyway, If one of the premier LOT do not fall to the Steelers then I would first look to the Secondary. However, taking secondary where we are drafting might be reaching, too. If I were to go offense (other than LOT) I would look more at an elite pass catching TE…maybe Jase Amaro from Texas Tech.

  • dgh57

    With Clark probably gone,Taylor and Polamalu well on the wrong side of 30 and the way our secondary has played this season we need a stud CB. A Safety somewhere in the mid rds. would be nice also.

  • ATL96STEELER

    Dave…I agree…I’m not the 1st to say this but with the nickel and dime pkgs being used 60 to 70% of the time I don’t think the Steelers can afford to take a one down, at most 2 down player on DEF.

    I think they have to get Ben more help. If they stay 12 to 15…take Evans, Amaro, Ebron, Allen Robinson, or the kid from FL St….Kelvin Benjamin.

  • srdan

    Our team does not have any glaring holes at any position like in past drafts, where we are forced to make a certain pick. This is the first draft in a long time where we pretty much know the starter next year for every position, and have young talent behind them. Corner is one position wher ethis does not apply, but gay, taylor and Allen are a good trio.

    One thing we really lack is finishing drives. We need to draft a matchup nightmare. A “new age” TE or physically dominant receiver for the redzone.

    To draft an OL high doesnt make sense. Tomlin likes to dress 7 and you already have pouncey, decastro, gilbert, beachum, foster, adams and the butcher. If you throw Velasco in that mix, there is plenty of talent. I highly doubt you get a huge upgrade over Beachum at LT that easily in the draft, plus I still think that Adams can pull through. The kids hasn’t had a trainnig camp yet.

  • ATL96STEELER

    Agree on Amaro, or Ebron…both are plug and play guys imo…If recent history holds form, none of these OTs are going to be ready to play LT next year…most guys are starting on the right side and moving over after some experience…the last high pick to start @ LT from day one I think was Kalil in MIN. There are 3 or 4 OTs that will be in the 2nd/3rd that should be able to do the same thing. Richardson or James from TN are such players.

  • mlc43

    Is your team the Steelers? Are you watching the current season or catching up on DVR?

  • ATL96STEELER

    Yes we do…FS imo is a glaring hole…#2 WR, a DE with a bigger presence to couple with Heyward. OL, we do need another OT, maybe not to start, but depth.

  • Game_Time

    If the Steelers would trade back to the 25th spot to accumulate additional draft picks, I think this would be a great move. I’ve mocked a draft… Tell me what you guys think

    1st Justin Gilbert CB/KR/PR
    2nd Kelvin Benjamin WR
    2nd Kony Ealy DE
    3rd Marcus Roberson CB
    3rd (comp) Ja’Wuan James OT (Mike Wallace)
    4th Daniel McCullers DT
    4th (comp) Tre Boston FS (Keenan Lewis)
    5th Colt Lyerla TE
    6th De’Anthony Thomas RB
    6th (comp) Ryan Groy OG (Rashard Mendenhall)
    7th Marcus Smith DE/OLB

  • mlc43

    We don’t have a regular 3rd.

  • Game_Time

    Trading back would be wise

  • srdan

    Lol. My rabbit ears may be pointing the wrong direction and catching early 2000 games.

    I actually watch games(to the best of my ability). Not base my opinion on forums emotional responses, or expert opinions trying to sell TV.

    Please tell me what you see as a glaring hole, and I will dispute it. You need to realize that we got 4 rookie starters from one draft, JJ, bell, V. Williams, (shark and wheaton count them as one) both started at some point this year. And other contributors. That is a huuuuuge step forward for this team.

  • ATL96STEELER

    Watkins…I love his game on the college level…a shade over 6’…my concern would be RZ productivity in the NFL.

  • srdan

    FS…yes, I could see that one. But Will Allen and Golden give you some flexiblity.

    I am not sure you need a #2 receiver if you bring 89 back and Wheaton is in the mix. Let’s not write sanders off as leaving just yet, they obviously like him. Which would make that pick kinda obsolete.

    A DE is another interesing one and I would have put it on the list, but after Tomlins praise of Woods and mentioning flexiblity, you’d have to think that he will be resigned.

    I disagree on OL, who do you get rid of? How many pics do you want tied up in OT. Did Adams show us his best yet, he hasn’t had a training camp. You have to admit that he plays well sometimes, just isnt’ consistent. And he is as young as some of the Tackles coming out of college this year. Which would you rather have?

  • ATL96STEELER

    The rumors of Ben wanting to get traded probably started from a agent or something, but imo there was an intent…with Evans, Amaro, Ebron, Allen Robinson, and Benjamin all being in this draft…I would be very surprised if PIT does not land a bigger playmaker for Ben.

    Dix…I like, but he’s not Vaccaro, Reed, or Elam imo.

  • mlc43

    Any and every secondary position. Before you start disputing you better start looking at the stats and games.

    Also, OL is a glaring weakness. I’m not even gonna go the easy route and say they have protection problems. I’m going with the fact that we should be running the ball better. I don’t think OL is as bad as some think but I still think it’s missing an important piece.

    Now lets talk OLB. Woodley can’t stay healthy and his production isn’t comparable to his salary. Because of his salary we probably can’t keep Worilds. JJ is young and athletic but he really hasn’t shown much as a pass rusher.
    So yes, I do believe there are many glaring needs.

    Now, I can’t help you with your reception problem other than to, unfortunately, recommend Sunday Ticket. :)

  • Steve

    No HaHa’s in Pitt please

  • Jollyrob68

    Dennard will be gone. I like the idea of a big Wr Evans or Benjamin but also want Dix,Dennard,Gilbert,Mosley or Truitt. If Spence isn’t recovered Mosley would be a nice pick up.

  • srdan

    See I would highly disagree o the OL. Gotta give Adams time. We were all pretty hard on Hayward, and now he is our best defesive player, and should be a probowler. They lost “their best player”(i don’t think he is) in the first game of thea season. We are on our 3rd string lineman at some position, and not one of our OL has played every game (foster maybe?). We need continuity and having the same coach for two years in a row for a young group goes a long way.

    OLB we need depth. It’s not a glaring need. Woodley or worldis will be back. You have starters, but we agree on the depth. Let’s not judge JJ just yet. Maybe he didn’t live up to our rookie expectations, but he is just that….a rook.

    FS and Corner…there we need depth and maybe a starter.

  • ATL96STEELER

    Cap…with the players u/c already for ’14 PIT is projected to be over by several million before the draft class…now the grapevine is saying Ike will take an outright cut to finish up in PIT…Troy probably will also, but we’re just scratching the surface for what needs to be cleared in terms of cap sapce.

    Said that to say that Sanders will likely get a $20 to $25 mil deal on the open market. Plus there is talk of retaining Worilds…highly unlikely Sanders is back.

    OL…I’m with you on Adams…imo he is the LT. I’m not trying to get rid of anybody, but they only have 2 legit OTs on the roster…a 3rd guy for depth is what I’m after.

  • Steve

    Good trio in gay, allen and ike? Gay has had a good year but can he produce year after year. don’t hink so and his past has proven that. Allen still has o ton of upside. Ike is done. either he takes a huge pay cut to stay or they’re willing to try him at safety. If neither happens he’s out.

  • srdan

    The cap issue is huge. 43, 24, 83 wil in some way have to sacrifice or walk. 25 is gone. Of course there are some names coming up that should be resigned starting with Pouncey.

    But do you agree that Wood or Worldis will be back? That means we have starters at OLB.

    Do you agree that Cotchery is 50/50 to come back? And we have Wheaton.

    Do you agree that Woods is likely to return, and there is a decent chance we get Hood back.

    I don’t see us losing all of the players listed. And if we do, then I would say we have some huge glaring holes.

    I just ran to the store and got some tin foil.

  • Virdin Barzey

    We definitely don’t need another Ziggy Hood.

  • Virdin Barzey

    Dude, you hit it out the park again. If we are trying to get back to playing base then a NT makes sense but not in the first round. We need CB like we need air. Our pass coverage, despite the stats, have been suspect for years.

  • ATL96STEELER

    I like several of your picks…not so much the positions you’re trying to take them…just one note I would make…Benjamin is going to go long before our pick in the 2nd…a good national championship game could push him to late 1st….I would target him #1 & Gilbert #2.

  • chris ward

    I can’t see the Steelers drafting a NT in the first round. McLendon signed a 3 year contract with the Steelers this year and Al Woods has some upside after his performance on Sunday Night. Steelers have pressing needs especially in the secondary at the CB and S positions. They could also be in position to draft a big time play-making WR that could pair with AB and give Ben an extra target.

  • Callentown

    Yeah, I have to agree. The Steelers drafted Wheaton to replace Fast Mike. Adding a third receiver of the same size might not be the goal as much as trying to find that next Megatron or Graham.

  • DeepPockets

    Yeah I agree Dennard in the 2nd is wishful thinking at best

  • DeepPockets

    I agree that we have had more than our fair share of laughers this season

  • ATL96STEELER

    lol…43 & 24 are likely to take outright pay cuts to stay…7, 83, 84 are probably restructure candidates to help…Wood/Hood are fairly cheap, depth players, should be able to afford them.

    Cotchery…I love his game…he’s perfect for a playoff caliber team…a luxury for a non-playoff team. I think Wheaton is a slot guy, not a #2.

    Pouncey has one more yr I think, but injuries have knocked his stock down…the guy I want back is Valesco.

  • ATL96STEELER

    Golden is going to get a shot, but when Allen is getting more time than you and he was brought back after being cut tells me that Golden may not be the guy.

  • Callentown

    BPA for sure. But with an eye towards the couple of need positions the team has:

    D-Line (with considerations of Hood leaving)

    WR/TE big target – Miller replacement down the line

    And for the defensive backfield, how about this? Stanley Jean-Baptiste – not in the first round – to cover the Gronk’s of the league. He’s 6-3, 220, 4.5 40-time and plays CB and S.

  • Objective

    We are not losing games because we lack a big wide receiver. We need to get more pressure on the QB, so a top notch DE or DT would help. Hood, McLendon and Woods are just bodies doing adequate jobs. We’ll never be a top defence with adequate play. We also require another quality ILB and CB has been a position of weakness for years. We need to get off the field on third down. That is why we are losing games at present. the offense point production is the same over time. Our defence is giving up 8 more points per game than previous years. You give up 8 points in differential per week and you end up with our record. Don’t waste picks on what isn’t broken. We’ve already got a top pick sitting on the sidelines at WR waiting for his chance.

  • DeepPockets

    +1 For Jean-Baptiste Unless he is a big stand out at either the Senior Bowl or Combine I think he could be in the 4-5 range. That also reminded me of another one of my faves from NEB in Randy Gregory. Could be a possible DE convert to OLB prospect and reminds me of Dion Jordan with his size. Although I doubt the Steelers would target him he is an intriguing prospect IMO.

  • srdan

    We are losing games because we keep getting 3 points instead of 7. We need a big receiver(WR or TE) that is productive in teh redzone.

    Yes a pass rush would be nice, although i disagree with the positions you listed if we are going to stay with the same scheme.

  • Brian Tollini

    I mentioned Nix back in October as being who I hoped the Steelers would go after, however, I only want this now if we can trade down and still get him. Nose tackle is such an important position for a 3-4 defense but I am certainly not sold on him as a top 20 pick. The secondary HAS to get more help, WR is a definite concern, as is OT, TE, and P.

  • John

    We need to draft one of the stud WRs in the first round. There are several and we need another playmaker desperately. We then need to go defense with the next several picks. The OL, while always an issue, seems to have improved markedly with the new scheme so stopping someone on defense is now the key.

  • Alexander Sebastian Heath

    As much I want a big WR, I think we should get a BPA at receiving position. WR/TE. Bigger players may do you good but if a receiver is just as physical, he’ll be fine in Haley’s offense. Right now for receiving positions I have the followingly ranked: 1). Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson. 2). Eric Ebron, TE, UNC. 3). Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M. 4). J. Amaro, TE, Texas Tech. 5). K. Benjamin, WR, Florida State. I have Benjamin rising as well, could top both Evans and Amaro. Watkins is just too good to not be ranked #1. His worst scenario is being Mike Wallace 2.0 and best, well.. he’s big for his speed so his ceiling is much higher.

    I’m open to other positions, but big no to a nose tackle!

  • Superdriller316

    There was a report out if we traded down to 25 or later we could pick up a 2nd and 3rd in compensation.

  • Alexander Sebastian Heath

    You are right, Dix is better than those players. He’s much of that talented when it come to isolation plays. He doesn’t get burnt nor miss tackle. He’s a much better complimentary player to Shamarko Thomas. Something Ryan Clark have been incapable of this year. Only differences are, Dix doesn’t rack up interceptions you would like to see from a safety.

  • cp72

    I think he’s the only player I would consider in round 1 on the defensive side of the ball. He would be a beast beside Timmons.

  • ATL96STEELER

    I don’t see anyone swapping a mid 20s pick for a 12 to 15 spot AND giving up a 2nd rd pick…3rd is more like it if the player they’re targeting is a QB.

  • Superdriller316

    I don’t either but that’s the way the points worked out. Well the Patriots worked some magic last year.

  • srdan

    +1

  • ATL96STEELER

    Better? Wow…this must be a helliva draft then…some scouts are giving this guy a 2nd rd grade…I watched the LSU, TXAM, AUB games this season. I’m not on board with better.

  • Objective

    Who do we have that applies pressure at present? Timmons, Heyward, and our OLBS. Not Hood, not McLendon, and not whoever we dress to stand beside Timmons. So how can you disagree with replacing these positions with better talent? Also, do you really think our DBs are top players? Have you seen the ease with which teams are completing third down conversions without any real challenge from the DB? We are fifth in the league in red zone touchdown conversions over the last 3 games. Our needs have changed from the start of the season to present. The offence is working now. The schemes have been improved. Our defence is failing when we need them most. Plus, are we going to play Steelers ball or are we going to try to be some fast paced offence? Remember where we play and what we are.

  • ATL96STEELER

    CJ could very well be better than Williams, but how much better is the question? My perfect storm, trade down for Hageman in the 20s, and get Benjamin in the 2nd rd. Now you have a guy to pair with Heyward on the DL and get a big WR.

  • dkoy85

    ATL you’re all over the place man. You just commented on a post a bit further down that there’s no way Benjamin makes it to the 2nd round. I guess you’ll be right in the end one way or another?

  • ATL96STEELER

    QB pressure or lack thereof is a big deal, agree there. But srdan is right also. The DL playmakers are going top 10 anyway…RZ production has been awful largely because these small guys have to be open, and Ben has to be pin point accurate, or you just fool the DEF.

  • ATL96STEELER

    LeBeau did change up the scheme a little to allow the DEs more pass rush responsibilities, but you need to point the finger squarely @ Woodley for lack of production from his OLB spot.

  • ATL96STEELER

    Did you note perfect storm? That’s a hope and a prayer sir. Reality is I think Allen Robinson or Benjamin…one of them makes it to the 2nd round but I think Benjamin will go later 1st.

  • dkoy85

    First… offense, defense- get rid of the c. Sorry to be that guy but it eats at me a little more each time I read it.

    Second… I see your points but one could argue that because our offense has improved and with some oline health next year we could have a very dangerous offense- why not put it over the top with something Ben has wanted since Plax left- a tall true handed WR? I really like Alshon Jeffrey and I see Benjamin in him with the way he goes up and catches the ball with his HANDS and comes down with his feet in bounds… and sometimes very awkwardly (reference Lynn Swans sideline catch).

    I truly believe our front 7 is going to improve dramatically next year with the experience the young guys have gained and with the emergence(and hopefully leadership) of Heyward. There will be a lot of fight for some roster spots and the young guys are learning the type of intensity needed to be great and I believe next year they will be(I know I will get some criticism for it). Williams is raw and needs to be polished but dammit is he emotional and intense! He has a genuine intensity- just watch him after each play and one play in particular against the Bengals- A play he wasn’t on the field for- when Garvin was subbed in for Williams and Garvin made a nice play(cant remember when) and Williams selflessly ran out on the field and congratulated him right after the play- even though he is in competition for the spot. It’s that type of emotion and team first mentality that will push him to be very good. He has the potential to lead this defense once he learns to play- and lead it the Steelers way.

    Our main area of concern certainly is the secondary but with a key free agent thrown in at CB and Shark getting the chance to start I think we’ll be okay. Let the front 7 go to work and watch our offense create mismatch nightmares all the way down the field and now into the redzone.

  • dkoy85

    Would be nice…

  • James Kling

    Watkins is talented, but “big?”

  • Alexander Sebastian Heath

    Argumentative, the grading on Dix is harsh. No one bash Mosley for lack of run support (a downgrade from last season and they don’t have two sets of solid cornerbacks that can suffocate wide receivers like their previous successors have. I’m not even paying attention to general teams’ mock draft/grades because I’ll tell you this much; Shamarko Thomas was a 1st round guy for the Steelers but other teams valued him lower so they waited until they felt like the time was right, traded up for him.

    You are right though, Clinton-Dix is probably a general draft board top 50 pick, but if Steelers are able to land him in 2nd, it’d be an excellent pick.

    I paid attention to his game where he would be starting as a free safety in our scheme; I ignored plays where he played cover-2, I ignored those plays where he was playing man on man because we won’t be asking him to do that. I paid attention to coverage, the isolation when he’s last man on field that’s in front of opponent- he doesn’t disappoint. Forget about sideline to sideline, because that’s a team effort, not an individual. Also he plays faster than most would indicate (rumors he run almost exact 4.6) and remember, Vacarro ran 4.62 at the combine. Vacarro isn’t that great of tackler (more of a big-hitter than body tackler that Clinton-Dix is) so I’m really glad we went different direction from him even if I wanted Tyler Eifert.

    Of course I do not know Steelers’ board but I was riding hard on Shamarko, being my teammate in high school I just waited and waited and he’s a Steeler, probably will be the best player of that class.

  • Alexander Sebastian Heath

    You also could say Wheaton was drafted to replace either Manny Sanders/Jerricho Cotchery. He’s more of a slot WR than he is a #2. A growing and bigger impact from the position now

  • JohnnyV1

    It’s all about value & need balance. The secondary seems to be the greatest area of need, and we have to get more sacks & FF from the front seven.

  • Jonathon Bert Schade

    Every year folks,(including myself) propose a scenario in which the Steelers “trade down”, but can anyone remember a draft in which they did so? Also does anyone know what type of comp. picks they might be awarded?

  • Ike Evans

    Give me a CB dennard, Justin gilbert, or one of the Florida kids….you know they looooooooove drafting gators lol…other then that….give me Sammy Watkins or another receiver…..here’s my dark horse though

    Haha clinton-dix

  • srdan

    I agree with you, this is what I was trying to say, there are no clear cut needs. We truly can go BPA.

    A lot of people took my post as we draft 0 players this year.

  • srdan

    I don’t know enough to understand how the scheme has changed. I never played football. But I believe it. Kudos to Dick again.

  • CW

    Have to wonder if any of these “experts” have really watched Beachum at left tackle this season. He’s not perfect at the position, but he’s been better than average at least and more than a worthy successor to Max Starks. He deserves a shot at permanently getting the job.

    Adding O line depth makes sense in later rounds, but if the team is going to add a defensive lineman in the first round I’d rather they add Tuitt to replace Hood across from Heyward. Tuitt is strong against the run and the pass and would create a real matchup nightmare to play him one on one.

    That being said I’d rather the Steelers trade back a bit in the first, pick up another 3rd or 4th round pick and take WR Benjamin in the mid to late teens in the first round.

  • srdan

    I disagree. I would be highly against drafting another 6 1 receiver or shorter. Unless you give me the second coming of Steve Smith, which comes about every decade or so.

    Haleys offense works great(don’t throw eggs and tomatoes at me) between the 20s. We don’t need help there. The issue is that when you get in the redzone, the field is much smaller and DBs dont have to respect teh speed for the deep ball. There is no deep ball. You have to throw it over the top. You either have someone to out-jump DBs, or you fool the defense (cotchery).

  • srdan

    The other thing that would really help in the redzone would be to be able to pull guards both ways. Hopefully Velasco comes back for that dimension.

  • ATL96STEELER

    Truthfully I don’t either, but that comment has been made by LeBeau…I do know in the past the DEs were kind of like DTs in a 4-3…penetration is great, but pass rush was not their primary job…that’s what made Aaron Smith and Kesiel so special in this scheme. They could stop the run, keep the OG from helping the OT, and still get pressure, but they had a 2 gap NT constantly getting push up the middle.

  • srdan

    free agents in this town are like cheerleaders

  • srdan

    lol

  • srdan

    I’d be ok with any of those positions. I hate this type of talk, I don’t watch college football, so I have limited opinions to offer!! haha

  • ATL96STEELER

    Good read ASH.

    Dix stock might be hampered a little by the silly suspension. Scouts has him in the teens, but others in the mid 30s or lower…but your point of scheme fitting player will dictate when he comes off the board…I’d love him in the 2nd rd.

    Eifert…I saw his athletic ability but wasn’t really sold, now we’ll have to face him twice a year…I wanted the Bama duo of Warmack & Lacy

  • James Kling

    No to Colt Lyerla. Dude’s messed up.

  • dkoy85

    Jerricho Cotchery and William Gay- FA’s. Sure, big name free agents are like cheerleaders in Pitt. but where there is a need, usually there is a quality FA signing. Might not happen but I’d be very happy if it did.

  • James Kling

    “Yes Mike Evans and Benjamin had a good year but it was one year.”

    Really?

    Which was Mike Evans’s good year, his freshman year (82-1105-5), or his sophomore year (65-1322-12)?

    I’d say both years were pretty impressive.

  • Alexander Sebastian Heath

    Lol Haley gets really conservative. Your comments on “a 6’1″ receiver” tell me you never actually saw a tape of Sammy Watkins. He’s freaklishly athletic and I mean if he was taller he’d be compared to Megatron easily. He’s got longer speed than Mike Wallace, mad hops like Nate Washington, and short quickness like Percy Harvin. He’ll beat you one on one even from the line of scrimmage. He’s physical, main aspect of Haley’s offense is getting under defense with physicality AND YAC. The statement of “tall receiver” is overblown, they usually win match-ups because they are tough, physical- not because they are taller.

    Megatron is very tall and jumps high, yet his catching % is like below 50. Gimme somebody above 60% anyday because if you drop more than you catch, what a good use are you?

  • ATL96STEELER

    A taller playmaker for Ben is a must…I, and I think Ben will very disappointed if they don’t address that with so many guys in this draft.

    Front 7…I feel pretty good about the ILB starters…I was really high on J. Jones, and I still am, but it’s pretty clear to me that he’s not big enough to take on OTs.

    I’ve been saying for a while now that the players seem to fit a 4-3 better…Assuming we lose Worilds to FA…Woodley at this stage doesn’t have the wheels to cover anymore, but could be a good pass rushing DE…Heyward on the other side…Nick Williams for depth…McLendon & Hood @ DT, with Wood and Fang for depth…Williams, Timmons, & J. Jones with Timmons in the middle.

    Won’t happen with LeBeau at the helm, but I don’t see a legit 2 gap NT on the roster either.

  • Xclewsive

    Give me a CB by the name Darqueze Dennard!!!

  • RedCarpetDefense

    DeCastro played right guard at Stanford and pulled left alot. I understand that at the time he was drafted it was so we could run the ball to left more and not be so right handed. Well I didn’t see a whole lot of that this year but I’d sure like to in 2014.

  • ATL96STEELER

    Draft moves…yeah, the Steelers tend not to make moves, but they did trade up to get Shamarko…the situation has to be right…not saying this will happen but roughly 6 teams need a QB.

    With the ORE kid staying supposedly, only 3 guys look like 1st round picks…with 2 DEs, at least 2 OTs projected in the top 10, etc….one of those top QBs could fall to mid round and a team like AZ could come calling.

    Comp picks…I’ve heard a 3rd for Wallace, a 5th for Lewis, and probably a 6th for M’hall but nothing in stone.

  • Jack

    When your drafting a wide reciver at 12 in the 1st round you sure as hell better not miss. Evans has been a BEAST this year and a nightmare matchup but i just dont think at 12 you can take the risk of missing on a wide reciever with so many other needs.This is why you go with Watkins. He’s a dynamic playmaker who will start immeatedly across from Brown. yes we have Wheaton but he hasnt showen anything this year and yes its only his rookie year but if your saying pass on Watkins becuase you have Wheaton your crazy. Watkins is an elite talent and is a guranteed started for years to come. Yes Evans could be really good, but theres no gurantee of that. My opinion is at 12 take Watkins who is the safer pick and better player. Look back 2 or 3 years ago when we had Wallace, Sanders, and Brown. Opposing defenses couldnt cover us. If you draft Wakins you open up next year with Brown, Cotchery, Wheaton, and Watkins Plus a healthy Heath Miller. Plus a stronger and faster Bell and hopefully an improved O-line your looking at a hell of an offense. Then you focus the remainder of the draft improving the Secondary, Oline, and Linebackers. Thoughts?

  • srdan

    Is that the guy at FSU?

    “if he was taller hed be compared….” I have no doubt that there are receivers a dime a dozen if htey were taller with the same athleticism they would draw this comparison, and maybe watkins owuld be atop the list.

    You can’t teach height. And in an NFL redzone it wins. I’ll read you the top TD receivers this year: Graham, v davis, calvin, dez, damarius, julius thomas, fitz, welker, marshal, cothery.

    Last year: James jones, decker, dez, gronk, marshal, AJ green, Demarius, Colsont, Cruz, Julio

    I’m not disagreeing with you that there are those rare talents (Steve Smith) that have a knack for catching the ball at its highest point, but the likelyhood of a taller receiver being able to do it better is much higher. Watkins may be that talent, who knows, but based on my observation, I wouldn’t bet on it.

  • Cody Younkin

    He’s my favorite defensive pick as of now

  • Robert Truax

    Where did the steelers last two first Rd wide outs go? With colbert recent wideout finds in layer rounds I’d stick with that and rebuild the defense first.

  • 2443scott

    i agree no way will steelers take him or any other NT …wr – db`s is what they need and a lt if any thing why would they take a NT and spent 2 years grooming him when they got so many needs

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    There is a difference between being a great college WR and a great NFL WR. The CBs are stronger, faster, and have better technique. You have to be able to beat them physically.

    Word on the street is Watkins is going to measure in at:
    6’1″ 200 pounds and run a 4.3-ish forty. (For reference purposes that is very comparable to Mike Wallace)

    If you want a burner who will get separation and take the top off the defense, he’s your man. If you want a red zone target, no way. If you want a guy who will make tough catches in traffic, no way.

    That is the problem with taking Watkins at #12 overall. He doesn’t have a lot of physicality to his game. So he gets a bunch of yards between the 20’s but doesn’t give us TD’s in the red zone. We already have that guy in A. Brown.

  • 2winz

    I disagree on drafting a Tight end.. what would be the point? Miller is still going to be here and we have matt spaeth as a solid #2. he’s a good blocker behind miller. why draft a tight end when will johnson or david johnson could play that spot as well? waste of a pick if you ask me. I’m fine with the o-line that I’d say we don’t really need to draft another 1. the only need on offense I could think of is maybe receiver. aside from that, the draft should focus on the defense. Especially the secondary because that’s where the “steelers are old” talk comes from. Ike, troy, clark, are all 32 or older.

  • Ryan Barton

    I thought that Markus Wheaton looked pretty good in the preseason and in limited snaps during the regular season. It takes awhile for WR’s to get playing time for this team. But I thought that he looked very athletic in limited snaps. Is he not good enough to be a WR 2 on this team? I thought that FS, CB, MLB, or OL were bigger needs than WR. I thought that, even without Snaders, the Steelers were rather deep at WR, if they can retain Cotchery. Moye could be a good WR 4 or a red zone WR.

  • MC

    Last draft i though it would be extremely beneficial to have traded down. Next draft i think its absolutely necessary.

  • MC

    I just hope the steelers stray from their stubborn ways and trade down to accumulate a few extra picks. It’s time they get a lil savy like the patriots on draft day with how many holes there are to fill.
    Most important positions to address in my opinion – CB, FS, WR, OL, LB.
    Man oh man they better draft a big bodied possession receiver, I love what Manny can do after the catch but I want a guy with Boldin like hands that can go up and get those balls that Manny couldn’t haul in this year. Our receiving core needs physicality more than anything.

  • MC

    I had high hopes for Golden but it is concerning how little time he has on the field this year. If he isn’t the guy than FS needs to be addressed early in the draft as Clarke gave up way too many big plays this year.

  • LucasY59

    maybe with the comp 6th, or 7th (even better as a UDFA) nothing where if they need to dump him it costs them much.

  • LucasY59

    I was thinking the same thing, The Steelers have drafted a lot of good WR’s but they don’t stick. Why use a top 15 draft pick on a WR when they just leave for $ after their contract is up? e.g Paxico and Holmes (Holmes didn’t even make through his entire 1st contract) even Wallace as a 3rd rd’r left for more $ and Sanders will most likely as well. If the team wants to invest a Valuable pick on a WR I hope they will be willing to keep them for more than 4-5 yrs

  • Robert Truax

    It’s not like rookie WRs play much year one anyway. Besides, I think management is expecting increased play from the big wideouts already on the roster with Derrick Moye and Justin Brown.

  • Chad H

    The needs I see tiered:
    1) FS, CB, WR
    2) TE, OLB, T
    3) G/C, NT, DE

    All is subject to change if Worilds isn’t back OLB will jump to tier 1.

  • Luke Shabro

    I’d probably swap FS with TE but other than that I think you’re spot on. I’m curious if they see Shamarko as FS capable or what they think of Robert Golden. Seems like they’re opinion of him fell a lot this year.

  • Chad H

    That is also subject to change. Problem is we are fans and not part of the decision making team for the Steelers. I’m a helicopter mechanic Steelers fan. If they are looking at moving Troy to FS and start Shark at SS then yes TE would jump to tier 1 and FS to tier 2 or 3. I thought TE was a higher priority last year with Heath hurt. Now with him healthy and Spaeth back and playing well they may view it as not a priority until 2015 draft. Also I. This draft is not deep in FS and CB. This draft will be interesting I believe 3 to 5 QBs could be going in rd 1.

  • ATL96STEELER

    Scouts do miss on some guys, but you’re not going to strike gold wading in the undrafted pool that often…when you do it’s a big deal imo.

    Clark…not all of the blunders were his fault, but you just can’t afford those kinds of mistakes from a veteran player.

  • HiVul

    I think answers to our problem running the football could possibly be found on the roster, if Pouncey is willing to play LG. Ramon Foster can’t pull and I think he’s hurting our running game’s potential more than we realize. I’d like to see this line from Left to Right: Beachum, Pouncey, Velasco, DeCastro, Gilbert.

    But the I agree with Srdan’s overall point, we can draft the best player available (aside from some obvious positions like QB/RB that we don’t need).

    You might say that we NEED to draft an OLB because JJ isn’t a sure bet, but there are no sure bets in the draft. You would just be replacing one unknown with another unknown.

    IMO let JJ start next year and see how he develops. We’re going to have to put a lot of faith in some of our younger players to get out of this cap mess and build for the future.

  • Scotty

    The Steelers may be “happy” with McLendon but they need a run-stuffing NT and bad. The defense is really weak up the middle, which allows teams to be in 3rd and short often.

  • Curtis

    Al Woods already on roster and played good game against cinncy.

  • Curtis

    I agree with the big body receiver. OL I think were set, sign Velasco and move Pouncy to left guard. Beacham LT and let Adams and Gilbert fight it out for RT. Still have Wallace for depth along with Foster unless Foster could beat Adams or Gilbert out. If need be find OL in later rounds. Resign Dwyer and make him a #2 running back behind Bell.

  • Shannon Stephenson

    Do not like Nix. Too inconsistnat for a 1st rounder

  • Nick Williams

    Evans turning 3s into 7s in the red zone would make all the difference in the world. With him, AB, Wheaton, Heath, and Bell out of the backfield Ben would be drooling

  • Callentown

    Gotta disagree on this one ASH. I recall them talking about how Wheaton is much faster than he posted at the combine and that he would be more of a deep threat.

    Hard to know until he gets a real chance I guess. I’m not a big Manny fan, so no problem seeing him go.

  • Alexander Sebastian Heath

    You don’t have a deep-threat in Haley’s offense. Yes he’s used Manny and Brown occasionally but that was due to exploited coverage, not the scheme itself. Haley thrives for slot position, right now that’s why Cotchery is surprising us.

  • Callentown

    We’ll agree to disagree on this one :) I’m seeing them take some real shots deep – which I personally like a lot.

    Then again, I still have a different opinion of what winning football is.

    The Ravens copied the Steelers winning formula, and it paid off. The 49ers are doing the same – Strong defense and a good run game.

    I know, I know, the game is changing blah, blah, pass pass pass. BUT, the teams that we generally see as the top couple of teams right now (Seattle and SF) are based on that philosophy. Denver may be there at the end, but they won’t win unless their D becomes strong again.

    Peace.