Happy Friday to all of you once again and welcome to the post-draft portion of the 2017 NFL season.
The Pittsburgh Steelers selected eight players this year and signed nine undrafted free agents. These 17 players will join several others for rookie minicamp next week, so at least we’ll have something exciting to discuss in the near future.
If you’re like me, you’ve been watching as much tape of the new Steelers players as time will allow this past week. I still have barely scratched the surface of what I want to accomplish in that area, however, and I definitely will continue the process throughout the remainder of the offseason.
As for the annual draft contest that we run on the site, I am just now getting around to scoring the results and hopefully will be able to announce the winner in the coming days so please stay tuned for that.
On a personal level, my father was diagnosed with kidney cancer this past week and now will need one them removed a week from yesterday. Please say a prayer for him that all goes well.
After a one-week hiatus for obvious reasons, I will now resume the weekly Friday night five questions posts. As usual, I hope several of you will take time to answer them all in the comments below.
Have a great weekend and I thank all of you for visiting the site this past week.
Peace and love, peace and love!
1 – Is there one particular player the Steelers drafted who you are a lot more comfortable with now than you were when originally selected? If so, which one is it and why?
2 – Between wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster and cornerback Cameron Sutton, which of the two do believe will play a higher percentage of offensive or defensive snaps during their rookie seasons?
3 – How many of the Steelers eight draft picks will ultimately make the team’s initial 53-man roster this year?
4 – Of the other three AFC North teams, which one had the best 2017 draft?
5 – It certainly appears as though new Steelers running back James Conner is destined to wear No. 24. Regardless of the eventual number he’s ultimately issued, will you buy his jersey this year?
Bonus: Name the horse that will win Saturday’s Kentucky Derby.
Question 1 – T.J. Watt was # 60 on Gil Brandt’s final top rankings. We had voted at a nearly 3-1 margin (17-6) that the Steelers first round selection would be in Brandt’s top 50.
Question 2 – 15 running backs were selected in rounds 1-4. The Jaguars took Leonard Fournette and the Panthers picked Christian McCaffrey in the first round. We predicted between 6 and 12 running backs selected in the first four (4) rounds with the median response at nine (9). Here is where the rest of these running backs ended up: 2nd round – Dalvin Cook (Vikings); Joe Mixon (Browns) 3rd round – Alvin Kamara (Titans); Kareem Hunt (Chiefs); D’Onta Foreman (Texans); James Conner (Steelers) 4th round – Samaje Perine (Redskins); Tarik Cohen (Bears); Joe Williams (49ers); Donnel Pumphrey (Eagles); Jamaal Williams (Packers); Wayne Gallman (Giants); Marlon Mack (Colts).
Question 3 – We predicted that running back James Conner would be selected somewhere between the 4th & 6th round. The median response was the 5th round. Not a single person predicted Conner going in the 3rd round – and he was picked by the Steelers. The heat is on.
Question 4 – We named 13 different “shockers” that would still be available after the first round. Dalvin Cook, Jabrill Peppers and Obi Melifonwu all with 3 were the most popular choices. The Browns took Peppers with one of their multiple 1st round choices. Dalvin Cook & Obi went in the 2nd round. Mitch Trubisky, TJ Watt, Reuben Foster & David Njoku all got two votes. All went in the 1st round with perhaps Trubisky’s selection by the Bears as overall # 2 pick the biggest shocker considering what the Bears gave up getting him.
Question 5 – Interesting. Responses ranged from 9-16 offensive players harvested in the first round. The overall perception being it was a weak crop this year. The median response was 13. There was an early run on wide receivers and quarterbacks but the final tally in the first round was 13 with 6 folks pegging it – well done Friday Night Answerers!
Three weeks ago, Dave posed this: “The league recently released the names of the 22 prospects who are scheduled to attend the 2017 NFL Draft in person and you can see that list below. Name the players on this list that you believe will still be on the board come time for the Steelers first round selection.”: We identified 13 of the 22 prospects who were scheduled to attend the 2017 NFL draft in person that we believed would still be on the board when it is the Steelers turn to select. USC cornerback Adoree Jackson’s 16 votes led the way with Colorado cornerback Chidobe Awuzie close behind with 14. The rest in descending order were USC linebacker Takkarist McKinley (11); Notre Dame quarterback DeShone Kizer (9); Washington cornerback Kevin King (7); Michigan State defensive tackle Malik McDowell (6); LSU cornerback Tre’Davious White (5); Wisconsin offensive tackle Ryan Ramczyk (3); Ohio State cornerback Gareon Conley (2); Alabama offensive tackle Cam Robinson (2); North Carolina quarterback Mitch Trubisky (1); Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson (1) & Washington wide receiver John Ross (1).
Of that list of 22; 17 were selected in the first round. Jilted were Cornerbacks Chidobe Awuzie & Kevin King, quarterback Deshone Kizer, defensive tackle Malik McDowell and offensive tackle Cam Robinson.