2014 NFL Mock Draft: Steelers select athletic CB Justin Gilbert

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The Oklahoma State cornerback was one of the top newsmakers at the 2014 NFL Scouting Combine this past week. Sports Illustrated has him falling to 15, where a waiting Steelers franchise should happily scoop him up.

This will never happen, right?

Oklahoma State cornerback Justin Gilbert appeared to solidify his efforts to be taken in the first 10 picks at the 2014 NFL Draft with a stellar performance at the Combine this past week. He had the best overall performance among his position group, and excellent college tape supports the notion Gilbert's name will be called early.

Strange things happen on Draft Day. Strange things, like a 6-foot-1 uber-athletic cornerback falling to the 15th pick.

Sports Illustrated's Chris Burke believes in those strange things (or perhaps doesn't see it as strange at all). He sends Gilbert to the Steelers at No. 15 overall in his most recent post-Combine mock draft.

His reasoning:

Gilbert’s combine showing — a sub-4.4 40, among other things — could force some team’s hand in the top 10 (Detroit?) Or it could force Pittsburgh, Dallas or others to consider trading up for him. Pittsburgh has to get better at the CB spot given Ike Taylor’s descent into mediocrity. Gilbert could be a shutdown guy at the next level.

One aspect of mock drafts that always makes me chuckle is how the write-ups appear to justify a pick going much higher than he is going in that particular draft. He mentions how it could force Pittsburgh's hand, getting them to work a trade up for Gilbert, and how he could possibly be looked at by Detroit with the 10th pick.

Yet, here he is, going 15th.

To say Gilbert would be a good value pick here is putting it mildly.

But it won't happen. Let's just keep telling ourselves that. It won't happen.

Right?

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