As we are now in the month of April, more and more is becoming clear about who the Steelers are looking at, and who they are not. One thing I try to do with these mocks a lot of the time is not just predict what the Steelers would do in different scenarios, but also introducing some under the radar, small school prospects later in the draft.
This next upcoming scenario may not seem likely on paper, but if I’ve learned anything about the draft, you never know what to expect. What may seem unlikely at the beginning of the draft process may change towards the end.
Let’s get to it...
1st round: Mike Williams, WR, Clemson
Hey don’t get mad at me, what did you expect? It was the cover page after all. While this may seem about as likely as Vontaze Burfict saying Steelers fans are great, we’ve seen it before with WRs and how they fall in the draft.
Put this into perspective, after what New England has shown with picking up WRs in the later rounds and how more and more teams keep finding really good late round WRs, it’s not as crazy as it may seem. Considering the strength of this class too and how valuable it is to have a great defense and how sought out stretch TEs are, the chances of Mike Williams falling this far isn’t as far fetched as it may seem.
Granted, that is IF teams are thinking this way and it’s possible they might be. Also think about how much the NFL values speed at the WR position, Williams is more of possession, redzone type WR (in the mold of Dez) and teams that are picking in front might not have a need for that type of WR.
The chances of this happening are low but we’ve seen crazier things happen on draft night and the Steelers would no doubt put in an end to his fall.
2nd round: Carl Lawson, EDGE, Auburn
*WARNING! Approaching fantasy like unrealistic levels.
Now before you snap at me, allow me to explain. Hip injuries, such as the one Lawson had are tricky. It’s very likely he may get some of his medicals back and find out quite a few teams red flagged him. That could lead to a decent fall for Lawson and that would be just fine for the Steelers.
Teams may not care and they might take him in the first either way but it’s something we should definitely keep in mind come draft day.
3rd round: Cameron Sutton, CB, Tennessee
Getting Sutton in the 3rd would be very much like how the Ravens got Tavon Young in the 4th last year. It’s just a tremendous value and you’re most likely going to draft a CB who will outplay a lot of CBs taken in front of them.
What Sutton lacks in size (I don’t care about size), he makes up for it with tremondous fludity and quickness to mirror receivers in man to man. He’s recongition in zone is what makes him dangerous as he does a great job of baiting QBs into bad throws. He can also return punts if you need him to.
He’s the type of player you get and you plug and play him out the gate.
3rd round compensatory: Brad Kaaya, QB, Miami
The Steelers have been doing their due diligence with QBs and it would not come to any surprise if they were to take one in this draft. Kaaya is a very interesting study in this class because he really could go anywhere in this draft. Some team could reach or they’re just pass him up and let him fall.
What Kaaya lacks in blazing arm talent, he makes a lot of it with timing, anticipation, eye manipulation, football IQ and toughness. While that last one could be debated due to how ineffective he is under pressure, he did not play behind the best of offensive lines and he got a hit a lot.
Another thing I noticed is that Kaaya seemed to play at his best in bad weather conditions and that is important. A lot of it is due to Kaaya’s big hands but a lot of it has to do with the spin he puts on the football. He also doesn’t lack the arm talent to throw it down the field and that was apparent back when he used to have Philip Dorsett.
Dorsett was such a field stretcher and had that blazing speed, yet Kaaya had plenty of arm to hit him in stride and that left me wondering if Kaaya wasn’t as scheme dependent of a QB as he’s made out to be. I also can’t help but notice his frame, along with how old he is (21) and it makes me wonder how much improvement could be had to his arm and overall strength as he gets in the NFL weight room.
One thing is for certain, if he was there for the Steelers in the 3rd and they hadn’t taken a QB yet, I’d be shocked if they passed up on him.
4th round: Wayne Gallman, RB, Clemson
Gallman is probably the most underrated player on that entire Clemson team. Whenever it seemed like they needed a play, he came up with a huge run breaking multiple tackles. He’s also a pretty good receiver out of the backfield and Watson looked for him often.
The problem with Gallman is that he’s not the fastest, the biggest, or the most agile back, according to his testing at the combine. Most often RBs such as him, tend to fall in the draft and with the Steelers looking for depth at RB, Gallman could be their man.
5th round: Rudy Ford, S/CB, Auburn
Gee, a lot of Auburn and Clemson players am I right? I’ve still yet to hear anything regarding a rising stock with Rudy Ford. Maybe he might be there in the 5th round but at this juncture when you haven’t picked a safety, he’s definitely a good compensation.
6th round: Samson Ebukam, EDGE, Eastern Washington
I’ve yet to see the Steelers show any interest in the FCS pass rusher but I’d really like them too. The type of results he put up at his pro day are just absolutely mind boggling.
To say that he has upside is an understatement, he has a ceiling that many pass rushers dream about. I’ve written about him before and he’s definitely a bit raw around the edges, but that type of potential is something you got to take a chance on at some point.
Ebukam is that guy that will become a much better pro player, than he was a college player.
7th round: Javancy Jones, EDGE/ILB, Jackson State
There is one small school prospect that the Steelers have shown interest in and that is Jackson State’s Javancy Jones, who is scheduled to visit with the Steelers, according to Ray Fittipaldo of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette.
Jones is an unbelievable athlete that tested really well at his pro day and while I don’t know how he did in the other drills, he put up a great 40 time.
Jackson State OLB Javancy Jones was clocked at 4.54 at his Pro Day. Set to visit the #Colts— Tyrant Scouting (@Tyrant_Scouting) March 29, 2017
Currently our #1 Small School Linebacker.
I still can’t quite figure out if he’s a pass rusher, or off ball LB but one thing is for certain, the guy is clean as you can get off the field, has a great work ethic and his motor is relentless to say that least.
I’m glad the Steelers have shown interest in him because he’s definitely on my list of small school prospects I want the Steelers to pick.