Kiper has UF C/G going to Steelers in first round
April 7th, 2010
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With the NFL draft two weeks away, ESPN analyst Mel Kiper Jr. has the Steelers taking Florida center/guard Maurkice Pouncey with their first-round pick, No. 18 overall.
“I think the Steelers could use a versatile, interior presence that can play at a high level at center or guard,” Kiper said today on a conference call. “He’s also got great character.”
If the Steelers took the 6-5, 304-pound Pouncey with their top pick, they could play him at right guard, where they could use an upgrade, and eventually move him to center.
Pouncey compares favorably with Jets center Nick Mangold, who has made the last two Pro Bowls and become one of the top players at his position.
If the Steelers address the offensive line with their first-round pick, Kiper said, they almost have to use their second-round pick on a cornerback.
Kiper said Patrick Robinson of Florida State would be a strong possibility for the Steelers in the second round if they go with a cornerback.
Another possibility he mentioned in the second round is East Carolina nose tackle Linval Joseph.
“Is really under the radar,” Kiper said of the 6-41/2 328-pound Joseph, “but has really come along and is now a solid late (round) one or early to mid two.”
Kiper said the Steelers may take a defensive end early in the draft and said Arkansas State’s Alex Carrington is a possibility for them in the third round. Joseph, he said, also could play end in a 3-4 defense.