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Pittsburgh Steelers Draft Prospects: Who is SS Jayron Kearse?

Could strong safety Jayron Kearse be one of the best values of the 2016 NFL draft?

Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

The Steelers secondary was one of the most inconsistent units on the field this past season. Their attempt to address the secondary through the 2015 draft backfired when second-round draft pick Senquez Golson, a cornerback, was sidelined with an injury before the season even began. The Steelers will need to add depth to the defensive backs through the draft and free agency.

Strong safety Jayron Kearse of Clemson could be an interesting prospect for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Kearse is the tallest strong safety draft prospect, standing 6-feet 4-inches and weighing 220-pounds. In other words, he is a towering, sturdy athlete who can stand up to the biggest NFL wide receivers and tight ends. The cousin of NFL CB Phillip Buchanon and nephew of former Tennessee Titan pass rusher Jevon "The Freak" Kearse, Jayron has football in his blood.

Kearse proved he can compete against the most elite receivers in college football during his time with the Clemson Tigers. He has impressed scouts with his speed, ball-skills, aggression, and intuition. Kearse's biggest downside could actually work to his advantage: He is relatively raw. Though he has tremendous speed for a player of his size, he is sometimes awkward and has trouble adjusting on the fly.

Nonetheless, his highlights are impressive.

Kearse is projected to be a fourth round pick. Jeremy Cash of Duke, Vonn Bell of Ohio State, Karl Joseph of West Virginia, and Miles Killebrew of Southern Utah could all find NFL homes before Kearse. In other words, Kearse could be a great value.