John Mitchell Attends South Carolina State Pro Day

The Pro Day information keeps coming in. The Steelers’ position coaches were all over the map yesterday. Joey Porter was in Maryland. Mike Munchak at South Carolina. And John Mitchell was reportedly a dart throw away from Munchak, attending South Carolina State’s Pro Day, per Tony Pauline and Walter Football.

The big name on hand, and the reason Mitchell was there, was to watch DT Javon Hargrave. Per Pauline.

“Defensive line coaches from the Philadelphia Eagles, Tennessee Titans, Pittsburgh Steelers and Cincinnati Bengals put Javon Hargrave through a workout which lasted almost 45 minutes. Hargrave looked good, displaying terrific quickness, explosion and movement skills.”

Pauline also notes that Hargrave met personally with each team.

He’s one of the star small school prospects and may wind up being the third FCS player off the board, behind Carson Wentz and Noah Spence. Hargrave excelled in every big-school stage he was at: Shrine Game, Senior Bowl, and Combine.

At the latter, weighing in at 309 pounds, he ran a 4.93 and jumped 34.5 inches in the vertical. He is undersized at 6’1 and doesn’t have much length, 32 inches, and has always seemed to fit in as a true 3 tech in a 4-3 scheme.

In 2015, he racked up a ridiculous 15.5 sacks, including 10 over his final five games. He also put up 22 TFLs, forced a pair of fumbles, and was named MEAC Defensive Player of the Year.

Frankly, it would not be surprising if he failed to even fall to pick 58, the Steelers’ second rounder. And again, though history means only so much, Pittsburgh has one of the worst track records of drafting players from this level. But the exposure Hargrave has gotten against top competition, and to excel, could make him a rare exception.

About the Author

Alex Kozora

Full-time blogger from mom’s basement. Marrying tape and statistics. Chidi Iwuoma is my favorite Steeler of all-time.

  • Donte Williams

    if we cant land billings in the 1st i would like Hargrave i was thinking he would drop to us in the 3rd but seems like he notating his stock to rise after such great performances

  • CP72

    I just watched the East/West game again. Didn’t pay to much attention to him the first time I watched it, because I didn’t think he was a fit.

    Long story short…..he was the best defensive player in that game. He just lived in the back field. This “new” type of lineman were looking at will take some getting used to. He’s not gonna do a lot of two gapping. He’s damn fun to watch though.

  • PittsburghSports

    I don’t see any reason he couldn’t play the same role many envision Billings having with us, and we could probably get him in the 3rd rd area. His arms are 1 inch shorter than Billings, and he’s only 3/4 of an inch taller, so I don’t see how Billings can be described as having length and Hargrave not having it. They both seem pretty average in that area. He’s a little quicker and more explosive than Billings too.

  • TrappenWeisseGuy ;

    I didn’t think he’d go that high but his stock appears to be on the rise (kinda reminds me of Ali Marpet from last year in that respect). Of those bunch of sacks, he got something like 6 of them in one game against an obviously overmatched opponent.

  • blackandgoldBullion

    With the talk of such a deep draft for DL, I was hoping guys like this would remain under the radar and perhaps be had in the mid rounds. They can’t all go in the top 2 rounds.

  • falconsaftey43

    Hargraves has the physical talent comparable to Billings and dominated his level of competition. Hard to find tape outside of the all star games, but love what I’ve seen. I think he’s behind Billings from a run defense standpoint at NT in base, but equal or maybe a little ahead in pass rush. I’d love either guy. Hargraves probably comes off the board in the 2nd from general opinion, but who knows where he ultimately goes.

  • ” Pittsburgh has one of the worst track records of drafting players from this level.” So many times the second round guys are guys that the team says they had a first round grade on. Maybe willfully overlooking a red flag that kept other teams away.

    e.g. Sweed, Adams – both first round grades per press conferences on draft day.

  • LucasY59

    Only way I see the Steelers picking Hargrave is if 1. they dont pick Billings in the 1st (or Rankins or Butler) and 2. he falls to the 4th rd (which is where the Steelers made their last selection of a sub FBS player (Tez) I think it is very apparent that the Steelers dont value the FCS guys earlier than the 3rd day of the draft, just like they dont value anyone outside of the power 5 conferences on the 1st day)

  • Ask Questions Later

    My point exactly. Pittsburgh will use more sub-packages.. but they will need someone who can handle the traditional role of two gapping in addition to one gapping (even though the edge rushers now are tasked with two gapping).

  • Ask Questions Later

    “Hargraves has the physical talent comparable to Billings.”

    Talent overall? Yes. Athletic talent? Not even close. Billings literally has over 1 ton of upper body strength. Hargraves does not even come close. However, should Billings not be there… then Hargraves would be a good alternative.