Once again a fine effort from one of BTSC's younger brethren. Kudos to him for the well thought out and written mock. Discuss. - Blitz-
Well, as the Pro Days and workouts wind down and as the draft draws near, we can only speculate what could possibly being going through the minds of Mike Tomlin, Kevin Colbert, and the rest of the Steelers Front Office; Here's my attempt at trying to enlighten you...
(Please Don't hurt me Danny Sepulveda)
1st Round Pick, 32nd Overall
Alex Mack, Center University of California
Height/Weight/Age: 6'4", 311 lbs, 24 Years Old*
*All ages are referring to the player's age at the start of the season.
OK, so starting off right away with the guy I've stayed with since September, I'm gonna say we take Alex Mack at the #32 pick in the NFL draft. With a heritage of great centers such as Mansfield, Webster, Dawson, and Hartings, it's hard not to step back and wonder "What Happened?" How did we go from repeat pro-bowlers to the Sean Mahans of the NFL. For 42 years we had 4 centers fill the starting position. In the past two seasons we've had two. To end this drought, the Steelers could bring in the big man from Cal. Mack is an excellent leader, player, and competitor on and off the field. The guy is someone you want to build an offensive unit around, let alone an offensive line. At 6'4", 315lbs, Mack is a prototype Center who is a powerful run blocker, and a solid pass blocker who time and time again was acknowledged as one of the best linemen at the NCAA level-even by his opponents (see 2:00 to 2:20 in the above video). IMHO, Mack is the next pro-bowl center in the NFL.
2nd Round Pick, 64th Overall
Jamon Meredith, OL, University of South Carolina
Height/Weight/Age: 6'5", 305 lbs, 23 Years Old
Jamon Meredith; I'll admit here that this might be a stretch, but I could see JM, falling to us in the second due to some past injury problems. Call him this year's Limas Sweed, but whatever you call him, you just can't ignore what this guy brings to the table. In what I would see as an immediate upgrade at RT over Willie Colon, Meredith can also play any other offensive line position aside Center. His powerful run blocking and consistent pass protection could have him going higher, but I think that if added, Meredith could provide an immediate boost to the run game, and Big Ben's lifespan.
3rd Round Pick, 96th Overall
Mike Mickens, CB, University of Cincinnati
Height/Weight/Age: 6', 184 lbs, 22 Years Old
Aside my next pick, Mike Mickens is probably my choice for most underrated player in the draft. Most teams will look at M&M in the late 3rd, early 4th, and because of this, I think the Steelers have a great opportunity in adding a dynamic corner for a low price. What's so Dynamic about him? Oh well, 14 career INTs a tough, big hit, tackling style, and an overall consistency about the 21-soon-to-be-22 year old just gives me the idea that it'd be a great idea to add him. What drops Mickens to this position is a slower 40 time (4.57) and a recent knee injury that required surgery. Think DeShea Townsed with a better pair of hands and a better tackler. I could see him taking over for Ike in a couple of years and possibly beat out Willie Gay in a year or so. Oh and did I mention, he's a Steelers fan.
4th Round Pick, 132 Overall
Mike Thomas WR, University of Arizona
Say hello to our Steve Smith/Nate Washington or something in between. At 5'8", Mike Thomas doesn't seem the type to pose any sort of threat to today's NFL DB's but damn, the athleticism on this kid is incredible. At the combine, Wallace posted a 4.40 time even, and put up a 40" vertical. In addition to warranting my interest, the Steelers have already had him visit Pittsburgh. Thomas in many ways reminds me of the recently departed Nate Washington. He's quick, he's got the jumping ability, he's tough, and maybe he doesn't have the most consistent hands in the world, but Washington proved that that isn't always necessary as a slot receiver, which leads me to my next point. Not only is Thomas a deep threat, but he's a nice fit to line up in the slot at the number 4 receiver position and develop from there. Now, I'm not expecting him to be Santonio Holmes, but I could easily see him getting to the level of Nate Washington. Plus, they found out at Arizona U this past season, that this kid can return punts and kicks. I'd be fine with taking him in the third, but the general consensus seems to be that he'll be there at the 128th overall pick.
Round 5a Pick, 168 Overall
Sammie Lee Hill, DL, Stillman University
Height/Weight/Age:: 6'4", 329 lbs, 22 Years Old
Video MIA: But here's an interview transcript.
Sammie Lee Hill is a guy that could surprise people. In his career at Stillman, Hill had 191 tackles,20 sacks, and 44.5 tackles for a loss, all from either the DE or DT tackle position. At 6'4", 328 lbs, his size alone is intimidating, and could easily fit into our 3-4 scheme. Whether or not Hill will have a legitimate impact in the NFL, I don't know, but then again who knows for any of these picks :)? But for Hill it's going to especially hard to adapt from a small school setting like Stillman, to the best of the best. Here's hoping he can.
Round 5b (Compensation) Pick 169 Overall
Frank Summers, FB, UNLV
Height/Weight/Age:: 5'-9", 241 lbs, 24 Years Old
Frank "The Tank" Summers. Man does this kid turn a few heads or what. At 5'9" 241 lbs, Frank reminds me of another player/vehicle formerly parked frequently in Pittsburgh. This guy is a perfect fit for this offense. His tough, tenacious power-running style combined with solid blocking and good hands could make him a dynamic threat out of the backfield. Previously I felt that this was too high of a position to pick Summers, but the more I see, the more I'm impressed. I mean it was the dreads that sold me, but I think a backfield of FWP, Mendy, Moore x2 (you'll see what I mean below) Tank, and Russell, would take us places.
Round 6 Pick, 205 Overall
Devin Moore, RB, University of Wyoming:
Height/Weight/Age:: 5'10", 191 lbs, 23 Years Old
Add a little more to the Moore family (sorry it's late). And no, to my knowledge, Devin Moore, is not related to Mewelde, but a more appropriate comparison would be to our own, Willie Parker. D.Moore has some pretty intense speed, even though it was projected to be in the 4.3's it ended up being in the 4.4's. Big effin' deal. The point is the guy has some speed. He's small, and evasive, and from what I gather, a very similar style of running to that of Willie Parker. The bonus is is that he can be used as a returner and a receiving-back, with good, soft hands. Whether or not he'll have the success FWP has had, I doubt it, but he could be a sleeper that would provide us with both depth and more weaponry in the return game.
Round 7a (via Tampa Bay), Pick 226 Overall
DeAndre Levy, LB, University of Wisconsin
Height/Weight/Age:: 6'3", 228 lbs, 22 Years Old
DeAndre Levy is an interesting case. I know his name was brought up in some of the fanposts earlier this week, and that the Steelers seemed to be impressed with him and his speed. During his career at Wisconsin Levy played OLB, but weighing in around a whopping 230 lbs, Levy would have a hell of a time getting anything going off the edge as a rush linebacker. A more likely scenario would be him moved inside to ILB, like Lawrence Timmons. I'm not expecting much from Levy, but you never know. They don't call Pittsburgh the "Linebacker University" for nothing.
Round 7b Pick 241 Overall (aka Mr. Irrelevant)
Pat McAfee, K,University of West Virginia
Height/Weight/Age:: 6'1", 221 lbs, 23 Years Old
Ah finally, the one the only Mr. Irrelevant. Only, this man could definitely amount to more than irrelevant. Pat McAfee, the kicker from WVU, could be the future replacement to long time kicker Jeff Reed. Correct me if I'm wrong but I'm pretty sure Reed's contract is up at the end of this coming season. So if Goldly locks decides to walk, then McAfee could be a legit replacement. The guy's 6'1" 221 lbs, built like a little linebacker. In the clip above there's a clip of McAfee making a TD saving tackle on a speedy returner. That in addition to a good, consistent leg strength will catch the eye of the Front Office any day. We're always looking for kickers and punters who are willing to take down a return man. Just look at Sepulveda.
Need I say Anything Else?
Sources Utilized & Acknowledgments:
All custom Jerseys via lp.imageg.net
Alex Mack via www.nationalchamps.net
Jamon Meredith via media.scout.com
Mike Mickens via cache.daylife.com
Mike Thomas via images.athlonsports.com
Roy Miller via www.40acressports.com
Sammie Lee Hill via www.steelersgab.com
Frank Summers via graphics.fansonly.com
Devin Moore via www.eteamz.com
DeAndre Levy via media.scout.com
Pat McAfee via www.dailymail.com
Pat McAfee #2 via media.scout.com
Jeff Reed via 2.bp.blogspot.com
www.rotoworld.com for age
www.wikipedia.org for Sammie Lee Hill's age
And of course Youtube for all it's videos.
Special Thanks to Draftguysdotcom youtube users for their excellent coverage of draft prospects.
http://www.nfldraftblitz.com/sammieleehillinterview.htm for Sammie Lee Hill Intereview.
Also acknowledgments to WalterFootball for some of the projected draft stock Lindy's Pro Football Draft Magazine, and Fanball.com's Pro Football '09 Draft Preview Magazine, for sizes, interviews, and some stats.