When it comes to NFL teams preparing for the NFL Draft, you leave no stone unturned in regards to prospects. This is why the Pittsburgh Steelers had representatives at Tulsa's Pro Day to meet with defensive end Derrick Alexander Jr. The Senior defensive end could easily fit into the Steelers hybrid down linemen role where they are looking to add depth heading into 2016.
Standing at 6-feet 2-inches, 270-pounds, Alexander is largely viewed as a 'tweener' in terms of where he would play in the NFL. Some would plug him at the defensive tackle/end position, while others might try him at the standard defensive end in the 4-3 scheme. Alexander has the burst and hustle coaches love, and has shown on more than one occasion he has a nose for the football.
In fact, when NFL.com listed their Top 200 Seniors of the 2016 NFL Draft, here is what they said about Alexander:
Derrick Alexander, DE, Tulsa
Though a bit of a tackle-end 'tweener for some NFL scouts' liking, Alexander (6-2, 270) brings exceptional hustle to every play. The second-team All-AAC pick in 2014 (12 tackles for loss, 7.5 sacks) is difficult to keep away from the ball and will earn comparisons to Green Bay Packer Mike Daniels and other undersized 3-4 rush linemen.
The Steelers have never shied away from looking into, and possibly drafting, players from smaller schools, and although Tulsa is far from a Division II school, it hardly has players with the pedigree of those larger NCAA schools which essentially serve as minor league system for NFL franchises.
The one aspect of Alexander's game which could be intriguing for the Steelers would be his versatility. He plays the run and the pass well, and has the versatility to rush from a variety of angles. With the Steelers leaning more towards sub packages in recent years, players with the versatility like Alexander could become the norm for Steelers potential prospects.