2013 NFL Draft: Three outside-the-box first round candidates

Nelson Chenault-US PRESSWIRE

While everyone has heard the names Manti Te'o, Barkevious Mingo, and Dion Jordan as possibilities to be the Steelers pick at 17, not everyone has heard of these three names. Each of these three players bring something unique to the table and could provide value and potential for the Steelers.

1. Khaseem Greene, outside linebacker, inside linebacker, Rutgers - Khaseem Greene is a two time defending Big East Defensive Player of the Year and he is one of the best defensive prospects to ever come out of the Big East. He has the speed, size, strength, vision, and leadership abilities to play almost any linebacker spot in the NFL. Lebau could use him in a multitude of ways, including as a pass rusher coming off the edge, dropping him back in zone or man coverage, and using him as a run stuffer. He is currently projected as a top 40 pick but I believe his stock will soar over the course of the next three months.

2. Tyler Eifert, tight end, Notre Dame - The Steelers have one of the best tight ends in football in Heath Miller but that does not mean they can't take a guy like Eifert. Eifert is huge, at 6-foot-6, 250 pounds and is projected to go in the first round. He is an unbelievable receiver but needs to work on blocking. With Heath Miller recovering from a major knee injury and the two tight end specialist Patriots on the verge of another Super Bowl appearance, there would certainly be an advantage to having a second stud tight end.

3. Xavier Rhodes, cornerback, Florida State - While the Steelers had the number one passing defense in the NFL last year and possess two of the best young corners in the game, Rhodes would be an intriguing pick at 17, if he is there. Rhodes is big at 6-foot-2 and is the best man cover corner in the draft. With Ike Taylor being a possible cap casualty this year or next, Rhodes could step in as a lockdown corner and give the Steelers some insurance if Keenan Lewis leaves. This pick could become much more likely if Lewis does sign elsewhere in free agency.

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