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fordfixer
04-30-2010, 01:48 AM
Kiper weighs in on Steelers' draft
April 27th, 2010
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I haven’t had a chance to see many draft “grades,” which annoy me more than rush-hour traffic, but that is another blog for another day. I did get a chance to ask ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. on Monday his thoughts on the Steelers’ draft and he had some interesting things to say.

The one thing jumped out is Kiper’s belief that the Steelers got quality as well as quantity out of the draft. He said all 10 of the Steelers’ draft picks have a good chance of making the team's 53-man roster.

“I’d say at the end of the day, all these kids play in the league for somebody, if not for the Steelers, it’s going to be for somebody,” Kiper said.

Here are some other observations he made about the Steelers’ draft.

— He applauded their choice of center/guard Maurkice Pouncey with their first-round pick, No. 18 overall.

“There was talk that he could go a little earlier,” Kiper said. “Very intelligent kid. Great character. At the end of the day he’s going to give them that physically inside presence.”

— Kiper said second- and fourth-round picks Jason Worildes and Thaddeus Gibson are “classic” 3-4 outside linebackers. Both will make the transition from defensive end to linebacker with the Steelers, something 2008 third-round pick Bruce Davis couldn’t do.

— Kiper indicated that the success of the Steelers’ draft could hinge on third-round pick Emmanuel Sanders

“There’s going to be a lot of expected from Emmanuel Sanders,” Kiper said. “He caught the ball in that June Jone’s offense on the SMU teams that really turned it around this past year. He was the key element in that offense.”

-- Kiper said cornerback Crezdon Butler, a fifth-round pick, could eventually become a starter with the Steelers

“Butler could be your third, fourth, fifth defensive back in that rotation as a reserve (this season) and can help you down the road maybe more than that,” Kiper said.

— Don’t dismiss defensive end Doug Worthington as an afterthought, Kiper said, even though the Steelers took the Ohio State product late in the seventh round.

“I think he’ll make the team,” Kiper said. “Hustler, had a very productive year with the Buckeyes.”