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Thread: 2014 NFL Draft: Steelers Must Do a Better Job Drafting CBs

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    Legend hawaiiansteel's Avatar
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    2014 NFL Draft: Steelers Must Do a Better Job Drafting CBs

    2014 NFL Draft: Pittsburgh Steelers Must Do a Better Job Drafting Cornerbacks

    SteelerAddicts April 17, 2014 by Mike Batista

    The Pittsburgh Steelers arenít the only team that passed on Richard Sherman in the 2011 NFL Draft. However, thatís not the only mistake theyíve made when it comes to drafting cornerbacks since Mike Tomlin became head coach in 2007.

    As Sherman would say, their cornerback crop during that time has been ďmediocre.Ē Itís been a factor in the erosion of a defense that allowed 11 plays of 50 or more yards last season.

    Of the eight cornerbacks drafted since Tomlin joined forces with Kevin Colbert, five never started a game.

    Joe Burnett, taken in the fifth round in 2009, lasted just one season in Pittsburgh and didnít break up a pass. Heís best known for dropping a Bruce Gradkowski interception that would have sealed a win over the Raiders in the midst of the Steelersí five-game losing streak.

    The Steelers chose Burnett over Jason McCourty and Captain Munnerlyn.

    Crezdon Butler, a fifth-rounder in 2010, never played on defense in his only season with the Steelers. He played for his fifth team in 2013 and still hasnít broken up a pass in his career.

    At least Curtis Brown, the Steelersí third-round pick in 2011, had two passes defended to his credit in 2012. But he never developed as a cornerback and the Steelers released him in March.

    Neither Terrence Frederick (seventh round, 2012) nor Terry Hawthorne (fifth round, 2013) made it out of Steelers training camp.

    Even the cornerbacks who havenít been busts have had mixed success.

    William Gay, the Steelersí fifth-rounder in 2007, had his best season as a Steeler in 2013, according to Pro Football Focus (subscription required). But heís had a roller-coaster career and the Steelers didnít think enough of him to keep him from going to Arizona for a year.

    Keenan Lewis, drafted in the third round in 2009, was second in the NFL with 23 passes defended in 2012, but that was his fourth season. By then, the Steelers were grooming Cortez Allen to take his place and regrettably didnít make an effort to re-sign him.

    Chosen in the fourth round in 2011, Allen had a promising 2012 but an up-and-down 2013. He started eight games last season and is still an unfinished product. Still on the board when Allen was drafted were Sherman and his teammate Byron Maxwell as well as Buster Skrine, who broke up 18 passes and started 15 games for the Browns last season.

    The Steelersí evaluation of cornerbacks must improve this year, especially since they need to draft one in the early rounds.

    Ike Taylor turns 34 three days before the draft and started to show his age last season. Gay hasnít put together two straight seasons as a regular starter in Pittsburgh. Allen has yet to establish himself as a true shutdown corner.

    The Steelers havenít taken a cornerback in the first two rounds since they took Bryant McFadden in the second round in 2005. The last cornerback they chose in the first round was Chad Scott in 1997, three years before Colbert began running the Steelersí draft.

    The tandem of Colbert and Bill Cowher drafted five cornerbacks between 2000 and 2006. There was some deadwood there, too, especially second-round bust Ricardo Colclough in 2004. But the decision to draft Taylor in the fourth round in 2003 made the mistakes forgivable.

    Now itís time to find Taylorís successor. The Steelers always have had a transcendent cornerback presence during the most successful periods in their history. Mel Blount helped them win four Super Bowls in the 1970s. Rod Woodson was part of five straight playoff teams in the 1990s. Taylor has two rings.

    The Steelers presumably have been hard at work studying Justin Gilbert, Darqueze Dennard and Kyle Fuller as first-round prospects in the 2014 draft and Jason Verrett, Bradley Roby, Lamarcus Joyner, Phillip Gaines and Marcus Roberson as possible second-round picks.

    After all that mid-to-late-round riff-raff of recent years, perhaps the Steelers will have better luck with a cornerback in the early rounds. They canít afford to miss this time.

    http://network.yardbarker.com/nfl/ar..._head_16294837

  2. #2
    I really dislike analysis that use raw stats as who is good and who is not. You could argue Ike's career interception numbers (14) and say that Dewayne Washington was better than he ever was... Dewayne had 31 career picks, more than twice Ike's number.
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    Legend RuthlessBurgher's Avatar
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    I think the part about Burnett never breaking up a pass (but was best known for dropping an interception) was interesting. Isn't a dropped interception the same thing a pass broken up?

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    "gay hasnt put together 2 straight seasons as the steelers starting corner"
    "Cortez allen has yet to establish himself as a true shut down corner"

    What useless statements lol

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    Never understood why Curtis Brown struggled. I never expected that after watching lots of his games in college. That has really hurt us.
    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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    Legend RuthlessBurgher's Avatar
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    I also like how they use Buster Skrine as an example of a success story because he starts for the Browns. Buster Skrine sucks. Cleveland will be looking to upgrade their starting corner across from Joe Haden (who is better than the much-more-hyped Richard Sherman, in my mind).

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by RuthlessBurgher View Post
    I also like how they use Buster Skrine as an example of a success story because he starts for the Browns. Buster Skrine sucks. Cleveland will be looking to upgrade their starting corner across from Joe Haden (who is better than the much-more-hyped Richard Sherman, in my mind).
    yeppers, i laughed at "starts for the browns".... and good catch on "drop"... but, "no break ups"
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    2014 NFL Draft: Latest Buzz Surrounding Every Team

    By Nick Kostos , Featured Columnist April 19, 2014



    The Pittsburgh Steelers desperately need to add youth and playmaking ability at the cornerback position and could definitely do so with their first-round pick (15th overall).

    Per Jamison Hensley of ESPN.com, the Steelers hosted TCU cornerback Jason Verrett for a predraft visit last Monday.

    In his latest scouting notebook, Bleacher Report's Matt Miller notes that Verrett is moving up his rankings.

    Verrett is one of the better cornerbacks in this class and will almost certainly be a first-round pick, but he might not be worth the 15th overall selection. This visit probably speaks more to the Steelers' knowledge that they need a cornerback, and general manager Kevin Colbert is doing his due diligence.

    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2...y-team/page/26

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    Ike Taylor thinks Steelers should draft a cornerback in first round

    By Neal Coolong on Apr 22 2014



    Swaggin' U wants a new partner. Perhaps the Steelers will grab another cornerback, thinks Steelers CB Ike Taylor.

    Appearing on his weekly TribLive Radio show, Steelers cornerback Ike Taylor thinks the Steelers will draft him a new colleague in the first round.

    Not that it's a bold prediction; most suggest the Steelers will make a cornerback their first pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. Oklahoma State CB Justin Gilbert, Michigan State CB Darqueze Dennard, Virginia Tech CB Kyle Fuller, TCU CB Jason Verrett and Ohio State CB Bradley Roby are the consensus top five corners in this draft, and it's a good bet four of those five will be available at 15 - Gilbert may go higher, but it's unlikely the others will.

    Taylor also noted a prediction the Steelers will grab Clemson wide receiver Martavis Bryant in the second round.

    Bryant, a long-gliding 6-foot-4 athletic freak, is among the rawer candidates at the receiver position in this draft. He averaged over 19 yards a catch his last year with the Tigers, playing opposite consensus top receiver Sammy Watkins.

    We noted Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert saw Bryant and Clemson back in November, and anyone can see the athletic talent Bryant has. He has a ways to go in terms of route-running and contributing to the position in a way other than just running fly routes.

    Taylor worked out with West Virginia product Tavon Austin before the 2013 draft, where the Rams selected him with the eighth overall pick.

    http://www.behindthesteelcurtain.com...=articlebottom

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