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Pittsburgh Steelers fans should dull expectations surrounding 2015 NFL Draft

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A message to fans as the NFL Draft gets underway in less than 24 hours.

Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

Want to watch something humorous? If you don't have a Twitter account, create one and be on social media around 10:00 p.m. ET when the Pittsburgh Steelers make their first round draft pick at No. 22. You don't have to type a word...just watch. Watch as a portion of fans explode with excitement, while others will combust in anger over the idiocy of Kevin Colbert and Mike Tomlin.

Just wait, it gets better...

It won't take long for the two sides to start going after one another as to why this person is right, or this person is wrong.

The message here is simple: just stay calm.

As fans we all need to take a step back every now and again and remove ourselves from the situation. Trust me, I am as excited as anyone reading this site to see how things unfold Thursday night, but let's be honest with each other - rookies rarely make an impact in their first year in the NFL.

With that said, fans cannot look at the NFL Draft as "re-tooling" their team. They might be re-building, but not inserting players who will start from day one. Last year the Steelers saw ILB Ryan Shazier as the starter from the first day he put on a black and gold practice jersey. Shazier showed signs he wasn't completely ready for that, injuries aside. The NFL game and NCAA game are completely different and takes an acclimation process for 99-percent of the players who will be drafted this weekend.

So what can we do as fans to prepare ourselves? Dull your expectations. If the Steelers end up taking a high profile pass rusher or cornerback, great. If they decide to go with a defensive tackle, that's fine too. The expectations of those players is what should be dulled, not our enthusiasm and excitement for the pick.

When Martavis Bryant burst onto the scene in 2014, everyone was ecstatic and saying, "Who is this guy, and where has he been all season?!" Everyone was extremely happy with Bryant because the expectations for him were so low coming into training camp. Face it, if you do a google search of the 2015 Steelers' roster, you are essentially looking at the 2015 active roster. Will there be rookies and other players who might crack the lineup from time to time? Certainly, we saw that plenty in 2014 with Stephon Tuitt, Daniel McCullers and Dri Archer.

However, fans can't expect these new players to step onto the field and be ready to be playmakers. Even the greatest players have taken time. Remember Troy Polamalu's rookie season? Not really the defensive rookie of the year if you remember, and look at the player Polamalu developed into.

With that said, when you sit down to watch the draft Thursday, Friday and Saturday with your cooler of Iron City Beer next to your favorite chair, remember the players they are selecting could be a superior talent in their career, but if we all just dampen our expectations for rookies (especially those selected at No. 22), they will have nowhere to go but up.