How is Colbert's track record in the draft?
2010 NFL Draft: Should the Steelers Bother With the Later Rounds?
by steeler junky Contributor
Why do NFL teams even bother with the later rounds in the draft?
Ever since Kevin Colbert became director of football operations in 2000, the Pittsburgh Steelers have been considered one of the most successful teams in drafting new talent.
Have they done maybe even a little better since Mike Tomlin became the head coach in 2007? It is hard to know for sure. The jury is still out on some of the players from the '08 and '09 draft classes.
My favorite draft class during Colbert's years is 2002. Why? Because five of eight of those drafted that year became starters. The 2008—and especially 2009—draft classes have just as good a chance to make such an impact.
In the three years since Tomlin became coach, 21 of 24 drafted players have made the team or the practice squad in their first year. In the previous seven years of Colbert's reign, 38 of 46 drafted players made the team or practice squad.
So the numbers are about the same for first-year players before and after Mike Tomlin's arrival. On average, only one player in each draft class doesn't make the team.
In reality, it is the third year that makes or breaks a draft class. That is why the jury is still out on the '08 and '09 draft years. So in studying Colbert's reign, I can only use the years from 2000-07.
In those draft classes, 28 of 46 draft picks were still on the team in their third year. That is better than 50 percent—which is one way of proving the Steelers are doing a pretty decent job in drafting players, right?
Or do you judge by the quality of players drafted in the first round, the first two rounds, or the first three rounds? Looking at the first-round picks for the eight Steeler drafts, the only one not still playing in the NFL is Plaxico Burress.
I guess 90 percent could be considered pretty good there.
The second-round scores are not as good, but still not low enough to be called bad. Five of eight players are still in the NFL. And third-rounders are four of eight—still better than a 50 percent average. From the fourth round, five of eight players from 2000-07 are still playing in the NFL.
In rounds five through seven, only three of the Steelers' 26 picks are still playing. More undrafted free agents have made the team their third year than picks from those rounds.
So why bother even wasting time picking players in all those rounds?
I tell you why: because two of those players have made a difference, and one still has a chance to make a difference this year—maybe his last chance.
The three players are 2000 fifth-round pick Clark Haggans, 2002 seventh-round pick Brett Keisel, and 2007 fifth-round pick William Gay.
Five other late-round picks will have a chance to step up this year. Some will make it, some won't.
They are 2008 fifth-round pick Dennis Dixon and sixth-round pick Ryan Mundy; and 2009 fifth-round picks Joe Burnett and Frank Summers, sixth-round pick Ra'shon Harris, and seventh-round pick David Johnson.
[url="http://bleacherreport.com/articles/369450-pittsburgh-steelers-nfl-draft-why-bother-with-the-56th-7th-rounds"]http://bleacherreport.com/articles/3694 ... 7th-rounds[/url]
Re: How is Colbert's track record in the draft?
IMO you can't discuss our draft successes and failures without including our UDFAs. We must have had more contributing UDFAs during Colbert's reign than almost any team - at least any perennial contenders.
Re: How is Colbert's track record in the draft?
hard to argue with Colbert's #1 draft choices, that's for sure!
History of Steelers' first-round draft selections
1936 3 William Shakespeare RB Notre Dame
1937 5 Mike Basrak RB Duquesne
1938 4 Byron "Whizzer" White RB Colorado
1939 – No Pick – – [a]
1940 3 Kay Eakin RB Arkansas
1941 – No Pick – – [b]
1942 1 Bill Dudley*† RB Virginia
1943 7 Bill Daley FB Minnesota
1944 10 Johnny Podesto RB St. Mary's (CA)
1945 2 Paul Duhart RB Florida
1946 3 Felix "Doc" Blanchard FB Army
1947 5 Hub Bechtol WR Texas
1948 9 Dan Edwards WR Georgia
1949 6 Bobby Gage RB Clemson
1950 8 Lynn Chandnois RB Michigan State
1951 9 Clarence "Butch" Avinger FB Alabama
1952 6 Ed Modzelewski FB Maryland
1953 5 Ted Marchibroda QB Detroit
1954 7 Johnny Lattner RB Notre Dame
1955 6 Frank Varrichione OT Notre Dame
1956 1 Gary Glick* QB Colorado State [c]
1956 5 Art Davis RB Mississippi State
1957 5 Len Dawson† QB Purdue
1958 – No Pick – – [d]
1959 – No Pick – – [e]
1960 6 Jack Spikes FB Texas Christian
1961 – No Pick – – [f]
1962 5 Bob Ferguson RB Ohio State
1963 – No Pick – – [g]
1964 10 Paul Martha RB Pittsburgh
1965 – No Pick – – [h]
1966 3 Dick Leftridge RB WVU
1967 – No Pick – – [i]
1968 10 Mike Taylor OT USC
1969 4 Joe Greene† DT North Texas
1970 1 Terry Bradshaw*† QB Louisiana Tech
1971 8 Frank Lewis WR Grambling
1972 13 Franco Harris† RB Penn State
1973 4 J. T. Thomas DB Florida State
1974 21 Lynn Swann† WR USC
1975 26 Dave Brown DB Michigan
1976 28 Bennie Cunningham TE Clemson
1977 21 Robin Cole LB New Mexico
1978 22 Ron Johnson DB Eastern Michigan
1979 28 Greg Hawthorne RB Baylor
1980 28 Mark Malone QB Arizona State
1981 17 Keith Gary DE Oklahoma
1982 12 Walter Abercrombie RB Baylor
1983 21 Gabriel Rivera DE Texas Tech
1984 23 Louis Lipps WR Southern Mississippi
1985 20 Darryl Sims DE Wisconsin
1986 9 John Rienstra G Temple
1987 10 Rod Woodson† DB Purdue
1988 18 Aaron Jones DE Eastern Kentucky
1989 7 Tim Worley RB Georgia
1989 24 Tom Ricketts OT Pittsburgh [j]
1990 21 Eric Green TE Liberty [k]
1991 15 Huey Richardson DE Florida
1992 11 Leon Searcy OT Miami
1993 23 Deon Figures DB Colorado
1994 17 Charles Johnson WR Colorado
1995 27 Mark Bruener TE Washington
1996 29 Jamain Stephens OT North Carolina A&T
1997 24 Chad Scott DB Maryland
1998 26 Alan Faneca G LSU
1999 13 Troy Edwards WR Louisiana Tech
2000 8 Plaxico Burress WR Michigan State
2001 19 Casey Hampton DT Texas [l]
2002 30 Kendall Simmons G Auburn
2003 16 Troy Polamalu DB USC [m]
2004 11 Ben Roethlisberger QB Miami (OH)
2005 30 Heath Miller TE Virginia
2006 25 Santonio Holmes WR Ohio State [n]
2007 15 Lawrence Timmons LB Florida State
2008 23 Rashard Mendenhall RB Illinois
2009 32 Evander Hood DT Missouri
a The Steelers traded their 1939 pick (2nd overall) to the Chicago Bears.
b The Steelers traded their 1941 pick (3rd overall) to the Chicago Bears (3rd overall)
c This was a lottery bonus pick.
d The Steelers traded their 1958 pick (8th overall) to the San Francisco 49ers.
e The Steelers traded their 1959 pick (8th overall) to the San Francisco 49ers.
f The Steelers traded their 1961 pick (6th overall) to the San Francisco 49ers.
g The Steelers traded their 1963 pick (11th overall) to the Chicago Bears.
h The Steelers traded their 1965 pick (3rd overall) to the Chicago Bears.
i The Steelers traded their 1967 pick (9th overall) to the Green Bay Packers.
j The Steelers acquired the 1989 pick (24th overall) from the Minnesota Vikings.
k The Steelers traded their 1990 pick (17th overall) to the Dallas Cowboys for Dallas' 1990 pick (21st overall, obtained from Minnesota Vikings) and a third-round pick (82nd overall, obtained from San Francisco 49ers).
l The Steelers traded their 2001 pick (16th overall) to the New York Jets for their first–round pick (19th overall), their fourth-round pick (111th overall) and their sixth-round pick (181st overall).
m The Steelers traded their first–round pick (27th overall), third round pick (92nd overall) and sixth round pick (200th overall) to obtain the 2003 pick (16th overall).
n The Steelers obtained the 2006 pick from New York Giants by trading their first–round pick (32nd overall), their third round pick (96th overall) and their fourth round pick (129th overall).
[url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Pittsburgh_Steelers_first-round_draft_picks"]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Pi ... raft_picks[/url]