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Thread: Six Players the Steelers will be watching closely at the Combine

  1. #1
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    Six Players the Steelers will be watching closely at the Combine

    From today's Trib. Best thing is I don't see a Nose Tackle listed which they shouldn't address until Round 3.

    By Alana Robinson

    Published: Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2014, 10:00 p.m.
    Updated 9 hours ago



    Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert calls the NFL Draft talent pool as deep as any he has seen in 30 years. NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock says it's the best in at least 10 years.
    For the Steelers, it needs to be.

    A fast-deteriorating defense needs help at multiple positions, including some of the most crucial in coordinator Dick LeBeau's scheme. Ben Roethlisberger must be surrounded by weapons, Colbert said. And age is becoming a factor for a team that's 16-16 the past two seasons after being 24-8 the previous two.

    Salary cap restraints will limit the Steelers in free agency unless they make dramatic personnel moves between now and March 11. As usual, that makes their draft preparations critical as they start to narrow their possible picks.

    The NFL Combine that starts Thursday in Indianapolis gives them the chance to see many, if not all, of those potential picks in a workout-interview setting in which they can assess the player, his personality and his character.

    Six players the Steelers will be watching closely at Lucas Oil Stadium:

    HA HA CLINTON-DIX, S, 6-0, 210, Alabama. Is being compared to Seahawks safety Earl Thomas. The Steelers have drafted only one safety in the first round in 44 years Troy Polamalu but they'll likely have two new starting safeties by 2015. Dix has excellent coverage skills, a Steelers secondary weakness last season. What the Steelers will watch in Indy: Can they take a cornerback or wideout in the first round and possibly get big-hitter safety Calvin Pryor (6-1, 210) of Louisville in the second round?

    DARQUEZE DENNARD, CB, 5-11, 195, Michigan State. Even if Ike Taylor returns in 2014 and he might not cornerback is a position of great need. Dennard lacks Seahawks cornerback-like size, but he's a playmaker. He doesn't just project, he also produces (four INTs in 2013) and he's physical and aggressive. What the Steelers will be watching in Indy: His 40 time. A good time makes him even more attractive.

    MIKE EVANS, WR, 6-4, 225, Texas A&M and KELVIN BENJAMIN, WR, 6-4, 230, Florida State. The Steelers badly need a big, cornerback-shedding wide receiver to complement Antonio Brown, and Roethlisberger loves big wideouts. Evans and Benjamin might be on the board at No. 15. What the Steelers will watch in Indy: Did Johnny Manziel make Evans or vice versa? Is Benjamin fast enough?

    RYAN SHAZIER, LB, 6-1, 230, Ohio State.

    TROY NIKLAS, TE, 6-6, 270, Notre Dame. The Steelers missed out on the Irish's Tyler Eifert last year, but Niklas could be there when they draft in the second round. Can block and is athletic. Doesn't have great speed, but Heath Miller doesn't, either. What the Steelers will be watching in Indy: As fast as Niklas is developing, how much more upside does he have?
    Playing Fantasy Football does not qualify you to be the in the front office or on the coaching staff of the Pittsburgh Steelers. They are professionals and you are not!

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    Troy Niklas seems to be a rising player. Could be good Round 2 TE choice along with Austin Serafin-Jenkins.

    Still think Ebron is going to be a special player so I'm still on him at #15.
    Playing Fantasy Football does not qualify you to be the in the front office or on the coaching staff of the Pittsburgh Steelers. They are professionals and you are not!

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    Countdown to combine: Steelers

    February, 18, 2014
    By Scott Brown | ESPN.com

    PITTSBURGH -- With the NFL scouting combine starting Feb. 22, we review positions of need and who the Pittsburgh Steelers might be looking at during the combine at those positions.

    Position of need: Cornerback

    Ike Taylor's play slipped last season, and there is no guarantee that the 11th-year veteran returns in 2014. Taylor is slated to make $7 million in base salary next season, and he will have to accept a drastic pay cut to play another season in Pittsburgh. Cortez Allen, who has shown signs that he can succeed Taylor as the No. 1 cornerback, is the only player at that position who still has upside. And Taylor, Allen and William Gay are the only three experienced cornerbacks on the roster. Look for the Steelers to draft at least two cornerbacks, as general manager Kevin Colbert has acknowledged that the position is lacking in depth.

    Three players the Steelers may be targeting:

    Darqueze Dennard, Michigan State: He and Oklahoma State's Justin Gilbert are the consensus top two cornerbacks in the draft. The 5-11, 195-pounder Dennard has decent size and teams love his physicality. There are questions about Dennard's speed, so his 40-yard dash time at the combine could have a significant impact on his draft stock. Teams will love his game tape, and Dennard recorded 62 tackles and intercepted four passes last season while playing for one of the best defenses in college football. The Steelers haven't used a first-round pick on a cornerback since Chad Scott in 1997, and they won't get a crack at Dennard in the second round. There does appear to be some depth at cornerback if the Steelers opt to address another position with the 15th overall pick of the draft.

    Pierre Desir, Lindenwood: Given his size and athleticism as well as the Steelers' success with Taylor and Allen -- both were fourth-round picks from small schools -- it seems logical that they will take a long look at Desir at the combine. The 6-1, 195-pounder intercepted 13 passes in two seasons at Lindenwood University, a Division II school in Missouri, and teams often threw away from him. Desir addressed questions about his level of competition in college by playing in the East-West Shrine game as well as the Senior Bowl. Desir is not ranked among ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr.'s top 10 cornerbacks, and he could be available in the third or fourth round. It will be interesting to see what his combine measurables are, and how Desir handles the big stage in Indianapolis.

    Bradley Roby, Ohio State: An up-and-down junior season raised questions about his maturity and probably cost the 5-11, 192-pounder a chance of getting drafted in the first round. Roby, who had 68 tackles and three interceptions last season, is arguably the most talented cornerback in the draft, and if he tests well and interviews well in Indianapolis he could re-establish himself as a first-round prospect. But if concerns about his inconsistency in 2013, as well as the one-game suspension Roby served for an offseason arrest, drop him into the middle of the second round or lower he could be of interest to the Steelers. Roby is a first-round talent and the right setting could make him a steal in the second round. Keep in mind that the Steelers have drafted 13 players from the Big Ten since 2007. Also former Buckeyes great Dick LeBeau is well-positioned to do the necessary homework on Roby.

    http://espn.go.com/blog/afcnorth/pos...mbine-steelers

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    Perhaps this should scare us away from a CB in Round 1.

    The Steelers haven't used a first-round pick on a cornerback since Chad Scott in 1997
    Playing Fantasy Football does not qualify you to be the in the front office or on the coaching staff of the Pittsburgh Steelers. They are professionals and you are not!

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    It looks more and more than a CB might be our first rounder. I don't see the need to go WR in round 1. They have had plenty of success with later round WRs. They will draft one, but not in the first round. Not many safeties are worth taking in the 1st round; there are no Troy Polamalus in this draft. They will likely go with two DBs in this one.

  6. #6
    Shazier and Roby both scare me....they do love the buckeyes

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    Quote Originally Posted by sick beats View Post
    It looks more and more than a CB might be our first rounder. I don't see the need to go WR in round 1. They have had plenty of success with later round WRs. They will draft one, but not in the first round. Not many safeties are worth taking in the 1st round; there are no Troy Polamalus in this draft. They will likely go with two DBs in this one.
    I agree... we tend to find great value at WR in later rounds

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by K Train View Post
    Shazier and Roby both scare me....they do love the buckeyes
    Both should scare you...certainly at 15. Neither guy is worth a 15, and I doubt either will be there for round 2 with us. Roby doesn't make it past the Browns in the late part of the first. A DB that fast, with that kind of resume probably wont make it out of the first. But, he had a poor year for the Buckeyes. I think he could be special with some coaching but he is a high risk/high reward pick. Shazier IMO, is not physical enough to play inside in the NFL. He is not as technically sound as he needs to be. He is a guy who has relied on very special speed to get the job done...and at the next level everyone is fast. But, having a LBr who is almost as fast as Mike Wallace is indeed intriguing. He does seem like a Tomlin kind of player.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shawn View Post
    Both should scare you...certainly at 15. Neither guy is worth a 15, and I doubt either will be there for round 2 with us. Roby doesn't make it past the Browns in the late part of the first. A DB that fast, with that kind of resume probably wont make it out of the first. But, he had a poor year for the Buckeyes. I think he could be special with some coaching but he is a high risk/high reward pick. Shazier IMO, is not physical enough to play inside in the NFL. He is not as technically sound as he needs to be. He is a guy who has relied on very special speed to get the job done...and at the next level everyone is fast. But, having a LBr who is almost as fast as Mike Wallace is indeed intriguing. He does seem like a Tomlin kind of player.
    I think Tomlin likes big and fast LBs. Shazier isn't big enough. He looks like a guy that should be playing SS in the NFL. And if he could do it, who would be a better mentor than Lake?

    But no way would I use a first rounder on him. That'd be crazy.

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    who was the 6th guy in the article?

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