My Gut Says WR or DB
If you consider all the positions on the team, every position has high draft pick talent....QB, TE, OL, DE, LB...except our WRs and DBs (except Troy who's near the end of his career).
So based on that, my guy tells me we'll replenish one of those units with a 1st/2nd round pick in this year's draft. We might even go back to back DBs like we did LBs in Tomlin's first draft.
There's talent at a lot of positions in this draft. And there's a boatload of Steelers' needs. But there's only 2 units that don't have long term top prospects that could develop.
It's going to be between Gilbert, Dennard, Ebron, and Mosley. I think Evans is gone. Of those 4, Mosley is the only sure thing. He will be a solid ILB at the NFL level. I wouldn't be shocked if the Steelers go with a typical Steeler pick in a solid LBr.
Pittsburgh Steelers: Wide receiver or secondary in the first round?
February 27, 2014 by Ryan Petrovich
The NFL draft is right around the corner and all the talk of who’s going where will finally come to end. The Pittsburgh Steelers have the 15th pick of the draft after finishing the season 8-8 and missing the playoffs.
A lot of talk has been swirling over which direction the Steelers will go in the first round of the draft. Many of those talks have shifted toward wide receiver or cornerback.
Recently it’s been reported that the organization has informed quarterback Ben Roethlisberger that they’ll pursue a tall wide receiver in the draft. They didn’t say what round, but surely the first round is an option.
Steelers’ general manager Kevin Colbert said the organization wanted to surround Roethlisberger with talent. The underlining message was that Roethlisberger’s no longer the young gun he once was and as every season passes his miles increase.
Roethlisberger’s most likely good for another four to five seasons but with his style of play and the constant struggles of the offensive line, who knows what could happen to Big Ben. The Steelers know this and if giving Roethlisberger a taller receiver will help land this team another Super Bowl, then they may be willing to spend that pick in the first round.
So what receivers are out there for the Steelers to try and snag with the 15th pick?
The big names are Mike Evans out of Texas A&M and Kelvin Benjamin out of Florida State. These two might not even see pick number 15 and could go somewhere in the top ten. Both men stand at 6-5, which is plenty of height for Big Ben.
However, should one or both of these players fall it would make sense for the Steelers to take one of them if they chose to pursue a receiver.
Other potential receivers include Sammy Watkins (6-1), out of Clemson, Allen Robinson (6-3), from Penn State and Marquise Lee (6-0), out of Southern California to name a few. These are all solid receivers in the six-foot range but you have to believe Roethlisberger wants the Steelers to eye a 6-5 guy.
Eyeing a receiver in the first round is one way to go, but I believe it’s the wrong way to go. The Steelers need help on defense more than offense, especially in the secondary.
The Steelers need to go after a cornerback in the first round of the draft.
The draft is filled with great corners and safeties that could easily help the Steelers’ reeling secondary improve. I personally would be ecstatic if the Steelers managed to get Justin Gilbert, a cornerback out of Oklahoma State.
The offense started last season slow but found a rhythm toward the end, Roethllistberger’s arsenal is already pretty good. Antonio Brown’s proven to be an excellent receiver despite his size and if Jerricho Cotchery is resigned then hopefully he can carry his success over from last season. The offense can manage, the defense cannot.
Veteran Ryan Clark will most likely be gone next season while cornerback Ike Taylor will need to take a pay cut to remain on the team, with a lot of experienced players headed out the Steelers need to find youth for their defense and start building it up.
Along with Gilbert other cornerbacks include Darqueze Dennard from Michigan State, Jason Verrett out of TCU and LaMarcus Joyner from Florida State, to name a few.
This year’s draft is deep when it comes to the secondary so if the Steelers did take a wide receiver in the first round they could most likely snag a quality secondary player in the second round.
I personally feel the secondary needs to be the primary focus whether or not the Steelers agree with me will remain to be seen. Expect a wide receiver or defensive secondary player to come off the board early for the Steelers.
Going to say WR, but it won't be the ones we keep hearing. Marquis Lee runs the best routes & is the best deep threat in Round 1. They'll look to replace Sanders with someone that gets deep like Wallace used to. How many 'almosts' did Sanders have last season? Too many. The Steelers need a deep threat. Lee is the guy at #15.
Schiavone's Race Career:
could be a smokescreen (maybe not sice its an 'inside source') but i heard they werent trilled with the defensive backs at the combine
sadly, i think evans will be gone by then too. although they do like benjamin as well. not sure i'd take him at 15 though
How the safeties fared at the NFL combine...
By Tyler Dunne of the Journal Sentinel Feb. 26, 2014
Green Bay — Alabama's Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and Louisville's Calvin Pryor are the top safeties, for different reasons.
Terrence Brooks believes he's the best, and comes from an undefeated, loaded Florida State.
Vanderbilt's Kenny Ladler has big-play potential. Jimmie Ward stood out at the Senior Bowl. Deone Bucannon is a physical option. The scouts are torn.
So how'd they do at the NFL scouting combine? A few highlights from players at a position of need for Green Bay...
--- Clinton-Dix ran well. Of the top two safeties, Pryor might seem the most athletic on a highlight reel. But Clinton-Dix is no stiff. He ran a 4.58 in the 40 and ranked fourth in the 20-yard shuttle (4.16 seconds) amongst safeties and third in the 60-yard shuttle (11.63 seconds).
Teams will probably like the fact that Clinton-Dix handled a lot of responsibility on the back end, particularly as a junior in 2013.
“I had to step up as more of a leader," Clinton-Dix said. "My sophomore year, I had Robert Lester back there to help me out a lot. Going into my junior year, I had to step up and find my new role. I had to step up and do that and be able to communicate with my young corners and linebackers.”
--- Brooks had the best 40 time at his position (4.42), speed that could help him compensate for his lack of size (5-11, 199). His 38-inch vertical leap also tied Brooks for first, with Utah State's Mo Alexander.
The Florida State safety says he has a game that transfers.
“Just being able not to come off the field," Brooks said. "I feel like I’m able to stay on the field with my cover skills, whether it’s man to man or up high. And I’m physical, too. I can go down in the box and handle things, too. Being versatile and being plugged in, I feel like that’s one of my good things.”
--- Pryor was a lot shorter than most expected. The Louisville safety was listed at 6-2 in college, but officially measured in at 5 feet 11 1/8 inches tall. He did manage 18 reps on the bench press (fourth) and ran the 40 in 4.58, so the speed and strength teams see on film showed up in this setting, too.
“Just allow me to be me," Pryor said in Indy. "Put me in position to make plays. I love watching the Steelers and Seahawks because they’re so aggressive. They’re greedy. They’re built off toughness and that’s the type of system I want to be a part of.”
--- Deone Bucannon was solid across the board. His 4.49 ranked third at the position, his 19 reps ranked third, his 36 ½ inch vertical was third, his 10-feet, 5-inch broad jump rankes second his 6.96-second three-cone drill ranked third and his 4.26-second 20-yard shuttle ranked eighth. Not a bad week for a player that needs to show he can play in space.
I don't pass on Gilbert for Evans or Benjamin. He brings a lot to the table, and not just on defense. Having him back there returning kicks, etc. He's a player who can keep points off the board AND put them on it. But he will be gone when we pick.
Since he will be gone, I would have a hard time justifying passing on talent like Evans or Benjamin. Hopefully the FO can get some ducks in a row and have Taylor back at a more reasonable price, as well as Cotchery, and also bring in a FS through Free Agency so that we are in a position to take one of these two WRs.
If the team is gonna make a career commitment to Ben, as they should, then setting him up with the weapons he will need for the rest of his career is huge. Getting that tall, rangey, safety blanket for Ben that he has desired since Burress departed would complete his arsenal.
I feel that Evans or Benjamin will provide that. He would have a well rounded group of weapons that compliment each other quite well.
For me, I want Gilbert, Evans or Benjamin. I can only imagine how good Evans or Benjamin would be with Ben throwing to them as opposed to Manziel or a Freshman. Just makes my mouth water thinking about a lineup of Brown, Miller, Wheaton and Evans/Benjamin with Bell in the backfield. Have fun with that.
A dream 3 round result would be something like Gilbert, Mathews, Brooks.
Or Benjamin/Evans, Fuller, Brooks.