View Full Version : Steelers.com: Steelers happily pick Heyward No. 1

04-29-2011, 02:15 AM
By Bob Labriola - Steelers Digest
http://www.steelers.com/news/article-1/ ... 9f57e92903 (http://www.steelers.com/news/article-1/Steelers-happily-pick-Heyward-No-1/3e0443e1-f802-481b-a7cf-b39f57e92903)

Posted 1 hour ago

Trade out of the first round for more picks. That was an option. Trade up in the first round for a player they really liked. That was an option as well. Picking 31st in the first round of an NFL Draft carries with it a lot of uncertainty, and so it behooves a team to have some contingencies in mind.

But as the first round of the 2011 NFL Draft unfolded on Thursday, the Steelers found themselves in a position to go with Plan A, and they were giddy about it. So excited in fact that while the New York Jets were mulling their decision with the 30th pick, the Steelers already had the card filled out with the name of the player they wanted.

Cameron Heyward, defensive end. The Ohio State University.

“I know it’s a long evening, but we feel it was very worthwhile for us to be able to stick this out and pick a kid like Cameron Heyward,” said Director of Football Operations Kevin Colbert. “We feel this is one of those special players, not only from a football standpoint, but this kid has impeccable character, work habits, toughness, you name it. It’s hard to find a hole with this guy. He is a special player. He is a special person.”

What the Steelers did in their preparations leading up to this draft was to identify a handful of guys they believed had a chance to be available toward the end of the first round, and then they put them in an order. They weren’t convinced Heyward would make it to their neighborhood, but they included him anyway. And he was on top of the list of the possibilities.

“The longer it went, the better we felt about our chances,” said Colbert. “We got a guy we really coveted and we have all our picks remaining. I can’t tell you how happy we are about this.”

There were several reasons why the Steelers were able to feel good about their chances, and two of those happened early in the process when the Tennessee Titans used the eighth overall pick on Jake Locker and the Minnesota Vikings followed up by picking Florida State’s Christian Ponder 12th overall. How the quarterbacks were going to come off the board in this draft had been the subject of much speculation, and the fact four were among the first dozen picks was one of the factors that helped push Hayward closer to the Steelers.

Other things working in the Steelers’ favor were two teams ignoring character concerns – Cleveland picked Baylor defensive lineman Phil Taylor and Baltimore selected Colorado cornerback Jimmy Smith – and a fortuitous trade by New Orleans to get itself a second No. 1 pick and use it to fill a need at running back, Alabama’s Mark Ingram.

The Saints sent their No. 1 pick in 2012 to New England for the 28th overall selection this year, and as a 3-4 defense the Patriots were a team considered to have some interest in Heyward. Then within a half-dozen picks of their own, the Steelers got two unexpected bits of good fortune.

Those would be Seattle’s decision to use the 25th overall pick on Alabama offensive tackle James Carpenter and Kansas City’s decision to use the 27th pick on Pitt wide receiver Jonathan Baldwin.

The four successive picks of Carpenter, Smith, Baldwin and Ingram meant there were only the Bears and Jets ahead of the Steelers, and Chicago was in the market for an offensive lineman, who turned out to be Wisconsin tackle Gabe Carimi. As the Jets were getting Temple defensive tackle Muhammad Wilkerson on the phone, Colbert already had instructed the Steelers’ representatives in Radio City Music Hall to put Heyward’s name on the card and turn it in.

Within seconds of Commissioner Roger Goodell announcing Wilkerson’s name as the Jets’ pick, Heyward was putting on a Steelers hat at his mother’s home in Atlanta.

“There are a lot of reasons to like Cameron Heyward,” said Coach Mike Tomlin. “He’s got a four-year body of work, not a one or two-year body of work. We are very familiar with this guy, very familiar schematically both in terms of what we do and what he was able to do at Ohio State. We are just extremely excited about him. He’s an impeccable young man, a really good football player. It’s going to be awesome to put him in the mix with some other big-body young people we’ve been able to add in recent years – Ziggy Hood, Maurkice Pouncey and now Cameron Heyward. I really feel good about adding to our lines of scrimmage with solid young people early in the draft.”

04-29-2011, 02:23 AM
I like. :tt2

04-29-2011, 02:36 AM
Defensive End | Ohio St. | SR Cameron Heyward
Height: 6-4? | Weight: 294 | 40-Time: 4.95

• Outstanding size w/ long arms and a large frame
• Terrific athleticism with pro football bloodlines
• Is relatively quick and agile for such a big man
• Physical and very powerful with excellent strength
• Is stout at the point of attack and can anchor
• Superb bull rusher capable of getting a nice push
• Displays great leverage and is a solid technician
• Violent hand use and able to stack and shed blocks
• A dependable tackler who really packs a punch
• Disrupts passing lanes if he gets stymied at line
• Competitive and aggressive with a non-stop motor
• Top football IQ with great instincts and awareness
• Tough, durable and will play through pain / injuries
• Will offer both positional and schematic versatility
• Mature and a leader with a tremendous work ethic
• A ton of experience against high-quality competition

• Is not very explosive, lacking elite speed and a burst
• Ordinary pass rusher and not much of a threat off edge
• Must develop some additional pass rush moves / counters
• Range is limited and isn't overly comfortable in space
• Will get washed out of play due to narrow base at times
• Wasn't over productive, specifically in sack department
• Inconsistent on a play-to-play and week-to-week basis

A four-year starter and team captain for the Buckeyes --- Named 2nd Team All-Big Ten in 2009 and 1st Team in 2010 --- Father is the late Craig “Ironhead” Heyward, a former All-American at Pitt and 1st Round pick in the 1988 NFL Draft who played running back in the NFL for 11 seasons --- Stepfather, Cory Blackwell, played in the NBA --- Did not have the standout senior campaign that most were expecting but was hobbled by an ankle injury and after resting looked great in the Sugar Bowl --- Will never be a dynamic sack artist and senior tape was a bit disappointing but is an impressive physical specimen with the talent and intangibles to play in the NFL for a very long time --- Profiles as a base end who can also move inside and play defensive tackle in the 4-3 but best fit may come as a five-technique in a 3-4 scheme --- Is eerily similar in many ways to Tyson Jackson of the Kansas City Chiefs.


Career Statistics
2007 13 33 10.0 2.5
2008 13 36 4.5 3.0
2009 13 46 10.0 6.5
2010 13 48 13.0 3.5
Totals 52 163 37.5 15.5


Cameron Heyward, DS #8 DE, Ohio State
Selected: Round 1, Pick 31, Overall Pick 31 by Steelers
Name: Cameron Heyward (+) Coming off elbow surgery, 01/11
College: Ohio State Number: 97
Height: 6-5 Weight: 294
Position: DE Pos2: DT
Class/Draft Year: Sr/2011
40 Time: 4.95 40 Low: 4.85 40 High: 5.06
Projected Round: 1-2 Stock: High: Late 1 Low: 2
Rated number 8 out of 124 DE's 26 / 2088 TOTAL

Draft Scout Snapshot: DS Rating on 9-1-10: #2 DE, #3/750 Overall, 1
2010: Four-year starter on defensive line … voted team captain … first team all-Big Ten … Playboy All- America … Lombardi Award semifinalist … Lott Trophy quarterfinalist … Nagurski, Lombardi, Lott, Hendricks awards preseason watch list … 45 career starts … career totals: 157 tackles, 34 TFL, 14.5 sacks … 80-yard interception return against Miami … also 4 tackles and a TFL against the Hurricanes … safety, TFL and recovered an Ohio fumble … sack, TFL and 6 tackles in win at Illinois … 4 tackles, TFL at Wisconsin … 5 tackles, sack for -5 in Purdue win … 7 tackles, TFL vs. Penn State … 11-yard sack squelched Iowa’s last drive … 6 tackles vs. Michigan … defensive player of week: Purdue … Attack Force award: Illinois, Penn State … Phil Steele midseason all-Big Ten 2nd team … Bill Willis award from coaches as outstanding defensive player …2009: Had 10 TFL, 6.5 sacks for the Rose Bowl champs … second team all-Big Ten … Lombardi Award nominee …2008: Rotating starter along the defensive front who is equally comfortable at tackle or end … 36 tackles, three sacks for season …2007: Became a starter along the defensive line as a true freshman … 30 tackles, 9 TFL, 2.5 sacks and 2 PBU...Son of former NFL running back Craig “Ironhead” Heyward.

03/31/11 - Ohio State defensive end Cameron Heyward was timed around 4.95 seconds in the 40-yard dash and posted a 35-inch vertical at his Wednesday workout, according to multiple reports. Heyward, who projects best to the five-technique end role in a 3-4 scheme because he lacks elite pass-rush skills, also went through positional drills. He is currently rated as NFLDraftScout.com's eighth-best defensive end in the 2011 class and No. 24 prospect overall. It was Heyward's first on-field work in front of NFL scouts since undergoing Tommy John surgery in January. He was unable to participate in the scouting combine in February or Ohio State's main pro day March 14. The son of Craig "Ironhead" Heyward, the late bruising NFL running back, Cameron can line up at any spot along the line outside of nose tackle. He complements his versatility with decent size, strength and athleticism, although he doesn't truly excel in any one area and was highly inconsistent in 2010. Chargers GM A.J. Smith and Steelers coach Mike Tomlin and defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau were among those to watch the workout, according to NFL.com. - Derek Harper, NFLDraftScout.com

03/30/11 - Defensive end Cam Heyward, who had Tommy John surgery in January, had his makeup workout at Ohio State on Wednesday. A source at the workout said Heyward weighed 295 pounds, ran the 40-yard dash in the 4.95-4.96 range and had a 35-inch vertical jump. He did not bench. He has been cleared for the activity medically, but hasn’t trained for it. Heyward did all the field drills. Among those in attendance were Chargers general manager A.J. Smith, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin and defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau. - Steve Wyche, NFL.com

03/28/11 - Best of defensive line prospects: Cameron Heyward, Ohio State, 6-5, 294, 1-2...The son of Craig "Ironhead" Heyward, the late bruising NFL running back, Cameron can line up at any spot along the line outside of nose tackle. He complements his versatility with decent size, strength and athleticism, although he doesn't truly excel in any one area and was highly inconsistent in 2010. Heyward has been sidelined throughout the pre-draft process following elbow surgery and is preparing for a critical March 30 workout in front of NFL scouts. Heyward projects best to the five-technique end role in a 3-4 scheme because he lacks elite pass-rush skills. - Derek Harper & Jeff Reynolds, The Sports Xchange

03/23/11 - Ohio State defensive tackle Cameron Heyward is among 14 players participating in an NFL.com web series called “Everything to Prove.” Being produced by NFL Films and Gatorade, the series will follow the behind-the-scenes drama involving pro prospects for the April 28-30 draft. It will include looks at the Senior Bowl, the NFL Combine, draft day, workouts, weighth room sessions and moving to a new city. Heyward is prominently featured in the third episode, talking about his late father Craig “Ironhead” Heyward, and his NFL dreams. The episode also includes a visit to the Super Bowl in Dallas and an impromptu visit to the “grassy knoll,” the subject of conspiracy theorists over the assassination of president John F. Kennedy. Also participating are Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert, Georgia receiver A.J. Green, Boston College linebacker Mark Herzlich, Alabama receiver Julio Jones, Purdue defensive end Ryan Kerrigan, Washington quarterback Jake Locker, Texas A&M linebacker Von Miller, Oklahoma running back DeMarco Murray, Oregon State defensive tackle Stephen Paea, Notre Dame tight end Kyle Rudolph, Colorado offensive tackle Nate Solder, Connecticut running back Jordan Todman and Wisconsin defensive end J.J. Watt. - Marla Ridenour, The Akron Beacon Journal

03/15/11 - Ohio State Pro day: Heyward, son of former NFL running back Craig “Ironhead” Heyward, continues to nurse a left elbow injury in preparation for a separate workout on March 30. He’ll be joined by OT Bryant Browning (6-4 1/8, 316), who’s dealing a hamstring injury but managed a 33-inch vertical and 8.4-foot broad jump, with 24 reps on the bench press. Of note, Chargers general manager A.J. Smith was among 100-plus onlookers — the room was packed with NFL coordinators — and that suggests San Diego is serious about one or more of these Buckeyes, as Smith doesn’t make this kind of trip unless there’s genuine interest. - Gil Brandt, NFL.com


04-29-2011, 03:38 AM
from Draft Daddy:

6 solid picks: "best under tough circumstances."

CAR sticking up top and getting the most marketable player in Cam Newton at 1. It sells tickets.

TEN hanging tough at 8 and taking Jake Locker and geting the player they love. It feels like a winner.

MIN grabbing Christian Ponder at 12, he's an ideal fit for their offense and mature with 2 masters degrees.

NE getting upside with Nate Solder at 17 and trading out at 28. Solder has all-pro potential if coached well.

NYJ and PIT drafting DL beasts Muhammad Wilkerson and Cameron Heyward at 30 and 31.
How were these guys still around?


04-29-2011, 07:46 AM
Don't we now have the problem that Heyward won't be able to participate in workouts because of the Ohio State trimester system. I don't think he can participate except for mini camp until June

04-29-2011, 09:09 AM
Don't we now have the problem that Heyward won't be able to participate in workouts because of the Ohio State trimester system. I don't think he can participate except for mini camp until June

I questioned that in another thread, because it was indicated that he completed all necessary coursework for his degree already. I was wondering if that would make him excempt from having to wait until the Buckeye graduation in order to attend OTA's and such.