Entering the seventh round of the 2016 NFL Draft, the Pittsburgh Steelers draft needs continue to dwindle. After selecting cornerback Artie Burns in the first round, the team went back to the defensive backfield to select cornerback / safety hybrid Sean Davis from the University of Maryland in the second round. In the third round they chose defensive tackle Javon Hargrave from South Carolina State.
With that said, the team finally decided to select an offensive player in the 4th round by selecting OT Jerald Hawkins from LSU. The team didn't have a 5th round pick due to the trade with the Philadelphia Eagles, but after selecting LB Travis Feeney with their lone 6th round pick, it was back to the offense in the 7th.
With their first 7th round pick the Steelers selected return specialist DeMarcus Ayers from Houston.
Ayers, who will be used to return kicks as well as play wide receiver, is smaller than most would like, standing at 5-feet 9-inches and 185-pounds. While at Houston, Ayers relied on quick passes and bubble screens to help spring him for big plays.
Fans shouldn't get explosiveness and speed confused, as Ayers ran a 4.6 40-yard dash at the Houston Pro Day. The Steelers are likely hoping Ayers can relieve Antonio Brown of his punt return duties before they believe he will crack the lineup as a wide receiver.
Pittsburgh Steelers current 2016 NFL Draft class (to date):
1. Artie Burns - CB - University of Miami
2. Sean Davis - S - University of Maryland
3. Javon Hargrave - DT - South Carolina State
4. Jerald Hawkins - OT - LSU
5. NO PICK
6. Travis Feeney - LB - Washington
7a. DeMarcus Ayers - WR - Houston