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2017 BTSC Pittsburgh Steelers Big Board - By Ranking (Pre-Draft)

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Final player ratings for the by ranking board before the draft.

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Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

STEELERS PICK AT: #30 of the first round; #30 of the second round; #30 of the third round; #41 (compensatory) of the third round; #29 of the fourth round; #29 of the fifth round; #30 of the sixth round; and #30 of the seventh round.

SOURCES: Analysis of needs is based on the discussion at BTSC together with published opinion from people who ought to know what they're talking about. Most of the raw data for this Board came from BTSC articles and comments, cbssports.com, walterfootball.com, the NFL's Draft Tracker site, and SBNation blogs.

YOUR COMMENTS MATTER: The Board is constantly updated to reflect feedback in the Comments. What you see is intended to reflect our community opinion, not the author's personal opinion about what's "right."

Organized by Highest Value ("HV#") to the Steelers. Great players for other teams get downgraded here when they fail to fit the Steelers' openings, system, or other requirements, with enormous downgrades moved to the "Ain't Gonna Happen" list at the end. An HV of 1:25 means the player is a reach for the Steelers at any point before Pick # 25 overall but good value at any point from the end of the 1st on. Getting that player in the early 2nd would be fine, while getting him at 2:14 would almost be a steal. Yes, this system results in a certain amount of grade inflation for positions of need because we are talking about the "highest" grade, not the one where a player is expected to go; grades are never pushed up just because of need, however. Players with the same HV# are more-or-less equivalent so don't sweat the order inside each grouping. I tried to group them by position: Defense, then Offense, inside to out.

Rounds are subdivided as follows:

  • 1st Round grades: 1:01, 1:05, 1:10, 1:15, 1:20, or 1:25.
  • 2nd & 3rd Round grades: Early (#:01), Mid (#:12), or Late (#:24).
  • 4th to 7th Round grades: Early (#:01) or Late (#:16).

HV

Info

1:01

Myles Garrett, Edge, Texas A&M - 6'4", 272 lbs. with 35-1/2" arms and 10-1/4" hands. A quote from our own Nicholas.Martin: "Myles Garrett is what people wanted Jadeveon Clowney to be. The way to describe him is if I gave Khalil Mack, Clowney's body and gave him the ability to the bend the edge. I don't need to say anymore about him." [Sigh] Here is the NFL scouting profile, which concludes with a comparison to Julius Peppers. Never mind the other links - why torture yourself?

1:01

Jamal Adams, S, LSU - 6'0", 214 lbs. with 33-3/8" arms and 9-1/4" hands. Jamal Adams, a 1-year starter who played WR until 2014, has been seriously compared to Troy Polamalu and is often described as a better version of Tyrann Mathieu. Brett Kollman's video scouting report calls him the "undisputed king of the place where offenses go to die." The Steelers have two very solid safeties in Mike Mitchell and Sean Davis, and two solid backups in Robert Golden and Jordan Dangerfield. Adams is better than any of them, and there's so much Nickel in the modern NFL that three rangy, cover-capable safeties can regularly see the field at the same time. He's a Colbert "Special", and you simply don't pass those up if they fall into your hands - which Ain't Gonna Happen, so don't waste your time dreaming. This December scouting report is one of the most critical you'll ever see, basically reserving judgment until a SPARQ score can be determined. This is a gif-supported, Bills-oriented scouting report that's also from December. This article compares 5 top safeties: Malik Hooker, Jamal Adams, Jabrill Peppers, Budda Baker, and Marcus Williams. Here is a brief profile from a Cowboys POV.

1:01

Malik Hooker, S, Ohio State - 6'1", 206 lbs. with 32-1/4" arms and 10-3/4" hands. I'm not making this up: Malik Hooker gets compared to Ed Reed even more often that Jamal Adams gets compared to Troy Polamalu. And to Earl Thomas. It's just that kind of a year. No better Free Safety prospect has come out in recent memory, and when Colbert "Specials" are there, you take them. He won't be there. There isn't a chance in you-know-what barring some catastrophic injury or off-field scandal. But if he was, Kevin Colbert will forget everything else and draft the sort of talent that defenses get built around. He wouldn't fill a hole - he would be the mountain that covers all other dips in the terrain. This goes to the CBS scouting profile. This article compares 5 top safeties: Malik Hooker, Jamal Adams, Jabrill Peppers, Budda Baker, and Marcus Williams. This goes to the Brett Kollman video scouting report, which emphasizes Hooker's extraordinary range as a floating free safety in the (you guessed it) Earl Thomas/Ed Reed mold. The verdict: "No QB in his right mind is every going to test Malik Hooker in the middle. He's the bogeyman of this draft class."

1:10

Marshon Lattimore, CB, Ohio State - 6'0", 193 lbs. 31-1/4" arms with 8-7/8" hands. The scouting reports on Marshon Lattimore, a redshirt Sophomore due to injuries, are going to remind you a lot of last year's Ohio State CB, Eli Apple. Lattimore is an athletic marvel - an "elite prototype prospect" - with every physical tool and measurement you could ask for. But his tape as a cover CB basically rates a grade of "very promising but unfinished". Reports were that the Steelers loved Apple last year, and they ended up picking a very similar type of player in Artie Burns. They will no doubt feel the same about Lattimore, but with Burns on the roster the level of need has seriously declined. If past history is any guide, Lattimore will be long gone before the Steelers' Round 1 pick in any event. This goes to a nice December scouting report. This January scouting report speculates that Lattimore might even go in the Top 5! This January scouting report strikes a similar note: Top 15, with the only knocks being inexperience and the injury history. Lattimore was #3 overall on Daniel Jeremiah's January Big Board.

1:15

Derek Barnett, Edge, Tennessee - 6'3", 259 lbs. with 32-1/8" arms and 10" hands. [Meeting at pro day likely but unconfirmed] Derek Barnett had an incredibly productive career in the SEC based largely on having one tremendous skill - a native ability to dip beneath opposing Tackles - combined with great hands, a knack for guessing snap counts, and top notch fundamentals across the board. Mike Mayock all but swooned over his "great football IQ" and his never stop, never quit, never be unavailable, all effort all the time approach to the game. He is a very advanced football player, and a truly tough kid. The downside? He's not the same miracle athlete as some of his peers. Thus Derek Barnett is an easy 1st-Round pick based on his exceptional floor, but his grade has to be modified a bit by the moderate ceiling; especially for the athleticism-obsessed Steelers. The Combine didn't provide a lot of clarity. On the one hand, he moved so well in space that Willie McGinest flat out said, "He can stand up and play in 2-point." Isn't that good news! On the other side, measured very meh in the explosiveness tests, which is what people were most concerned about. Yes, he was sick as a dog and simply showing up to try was a testament to his toughness. Rinse and repeat: Others might listen to agents and avoid doing drills after the long grind of getting poked, prodded, and underslept, but Barnett went through all of that and then did the drills despite a nasty virus and apparently a serious fever. Well done! But is he what the Steelers are looking for? The NFL.com scouting profile details the high floor but moderate ceiling features. Similar details emerge in the CBS scouting profile. This DraftWire scouting report ends with a Top 15 grade. This scouting report from our sister for the Jets comes in at Top 10.

1:15

Haason Reddick, ILB, Temple - 6'1", 237 lbs. with 32-3/4" arms and 10-1/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Reddick is an intriguing prospect worth reading up on. He started out as a defensive back who outgrew that position and ended up as an undersized, pass-rushing defensive end in Temple's 4-3 scheme. This December scouting profile describes him as a "poor man's Bruce Irvin" in that capacity, a comparison used in this early scouting profile too. Upon further reflection, the strong consensus is that he will move to ILB (OLB in a 4-3) for his professional career, with his pass rush skills being a bonus. Mike Mayock and Daniel Jeremiah discussed this in some detail during the Combine coverage (which Haason Reddick may have ‘won'): "He's probably going to be an off the ball linebacker... With these super fast and athletic TE's you need to have athletic ILB's, and that's exactly what Reddick is.... This guy is the answer to all those TE's who ran fast yesterday." Mayock also noted that Reddick was awarded a coveted single-digit jersey by his teammates for being a model of "Temple Tough." Reports are that Tyler Matakevich, another Temple guy, praises him to the sky (which you can find with other interesting background in this article). Read the NFL scouting profile if you want to get excited: it views Reddick as a step-slower Ryan Shazier in the making. The question for Pittsburgh is whether than background as a DB means he could function as a true cover-LB. If the cards fall exactly right he could be just the guy to back up Shazier, to build a unique 3-3-5 Nickel package around, to earn current snaps by replacing our run-stuffing Buck ILB's on passing-likely downs, and possibly to serve as an upgrade on Vince Williams after a year or two of seasoning. If you put credit in this sort of thing - and I do - Daniel Jeremiah called on his roots as a Ravens scout to say (paraphrasing): "Successful teams develop a particular ‘type' that you learn to recognize. I know a Steeler when I see one, and that's Haason Reddick. He's the most Steelerish prospect I've seen since Heath Miller." That sense of connection may be part of what's driven the tide of sentiment tying Reddick to the Steelers despite the odd match from a ‘need' standpoint, as discussed in this February article from our own Nathaniel Bodnar.

This DraftWire scouting report was one of the first to start drumming the Round 1 war cry. Here is a nice scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants. This goes to a similarly analytical scouting profile from our sister site for the Lions. This post-Combine Bleacher Report article argues that Reddick's Combine established him as the premier ILB in the draft. Here is the full Walter Football scouting profile. This goes to a scouting profile from Pats Pulpit. And one from our sister site for the Giants. Here is a particularly good article for deeper background.

1:20

Solomon Thomas, DL/Edge, Stanford - 6'3", 273 lbs. with 33" arms and 9-3/8" hands. Solomon Thomas is a smart, tenacious, workaholic who may or may not have that natural genius going around the edge. If Thomas can show some dip and the ability to play in space as an OLB, he gets an easy 1st-Round grade. If he's more of a defensive end, discounts will have to be applied... though he's talented enough to play with the system rather than just ignore. The process will reveal all. Here is a glowing NFL.com scouting profile. This New Year's scouting report ends with a Top-15 grade as a 4-3 defensive tackle/end hybrid - not at all what the Steelers would want. This January scouting report from a reliable Seahawks site emphasizes that Thomas is a SPARQ score wonder, and also views him as a Top 10-15 if he's treated as a 4-3 defensive lineman. Thomas does well with his strengths, using his size and power to bully smaller blockers while slipping away with good lateral agility, but the knock on him being so polished is also what could hold him back in the NFL.

1:20

Charles Harris, Edge, Missouri - 6'3", 253 lbs. with 32-3/8" arms and 9-5/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Charles Harris was a clear favorite in the Pittsburgh Edge Sweepstakes until the Combine, when he confused things in both directions. On the good side, he showed surprising movement skills in space. The words "smooth" and "natural" were used over and over, along with "natural", "easy" and "comfortable" in the LB drills. Willie McGinest's summary: "Charles Harris is making some money for himself." The bad? His hardcore SPARQ measurements like the dash, the vertical and the broad jumps were nothing short of awful, as in bottom 10% of NFL pass rushers. We were all in a tizzy until his pro day results showed just the kind of athleticism we expected to begin with.

Here is a late March, gif-supported Fanpost scouting report from BTSC's own ARSteel. As summarized in this January scouting report, which compares him to Ryan Kerrigan, Charles Harris has real talent and willingness when it comes to run defense, and a ridiculous amount of foot speed, acceleration, and explosion that makes him terribly dangerous as a pass rusher. A hell of a bull rush too, a vicious spin move, and he's flashed the ability to dip around the edge. He does have a bad habit of play with a high pad level, which gets him washed out of running plays, and he has major areas in which he could improve, such as hand fighting. OTOH, that's what coaches are for, right? The NFL.com scouting profile has some nice observations about both the good and the bad, with a heavy emphasis on some questions about attitude and coachability that only an interview could really answer. If Harris is coachable, however, you could be looking at a guy the Steelers might even trade up to get. The Cowboys at 1:28 would be a likely obstacle, as expanded on in this late January scouting report from the same author. This December scouting report comes from an Arizona Cardinals site. This January scouting profile is a bit summary, but seems fair enough. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants struggles to reconcile the differences between what Harris showed on tape and what he showed at the Combine.

1:20

T.J. Watt, Edge/ILB, Wisconsin - 6'4", 252 lbs. with long 33-1/8" arms and massive 11" hands. [Meeting at the Combine and Pro Day] T.J. Watt gets some pushback from people who think his stock gets unduly inflated because of his older brother J.J. To which we can collectively say, "Oh, poo." The family connection obviously means something - athletic talent does have a genetic component, which shows in T.J.'s length, fast hands, and basic strength. They were raised in the same household, which bodes well for his ability to be a pro's pro. T.J. also shows some decent technique that may come from informal coaching at the family Thanksgiving game (wouldn't that one be a sight!). Beyond those things it can be ignored. T.J. is a heck of a good prospect taken all on his own. His SPARQ score from the Combine testing was amazing, especially the important explosion and agility numbers. Mike Mayock believes "The easy comp is Clay Matthews." He also emphasized that Watt has a good get off, very strong hands, and is pretty darned good in space - all of which are going to improve since he is very raw, having played TE until a year ago. Super athletic; high character; smart; hard-working; but horribly raw. What team do we know that favors that profile?

The NFL.com scouting profile has little but good to say, describing a very high floor for a player who is "not very twitched up" - a concern that the Combine results negated. This gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Packers (and home state to the Wisconsin Badgers) is a good place to start. It projects him as a solid, consistent, 4-6 sack guy who will never let you down in other areas. This goes to a SteelersWire summary that's worth a read too. For a really detailed analysis, check out the 53-minute Matt Waldman video epic. This January scouting profile emphasizes Watt's superior ability to dip and rip around the edge, along with his physical strength, relentless motor, and "formidable" skill in run support, but ends with a Round 3 grade nevertheless because he seems to be excellent but not great. This brief scouting profile from Baltimore Beatdown also considers him good 3rd Round value. This nice scouting profile would agree - very solid with a high floor, but also a limited ceiling. This article discusses Mike Mayock's comparison to Clay Matthews. For a bit of deeper background I like this October article from Sports Illustrated. This February scouting profile ends with a 2nd Round grade. This Packers/Wisconsin-oriented scouting profile ends with a fringe-1st grade, as do this more enthusiastic and detailed scouting profile and this post-Combine scouting report from a Patriots site. This goes to a decent Jets-oriented scouting profile. This interesting article compares Tyus Bowser and T.J. Watt to Khalil Mack, legitimately from the athletic measurements point of view. Here is a long, thorough 37-minute film session on Watt that's worth the time. This longish scouting profile from our sister site for the 49ers has more questions about his durability than any on-field issues.

1:20

Jabrill Peppers, S, Michigan - 5'11", 213 lbs. with 30-3/4" arms and 9-5/8" hands. This entry could get long because there is an outside chance that Peppers will be available to Pittsburgh at the end of Round 1, in which case the "First Edge Available" crowd may have to change their tune. This may be the single best athlete in the draft, and he would be the ideal Hybrid LB/SS puzzle piece that would allow Coach Butler to create a defense comparable to any since the Steel Curtain itself. Mike Mayock flat out raves about his ability to play Nickel Corner, Safety, and even help as an undersized Dime LB. He called Peppers "a bigger version of Budda Baker," which is a hell of a compliment since Baker is a fringe 1st-Rounder too. We are told that Jim Harbaugh compares his football IQ to Andrew Luck, and confirms that he sacrificed himself for the good of the team by playing linebacker in 2016 instead of his natural position at Safety. And Peppers is also hugely charismatic and reported to be a fabulous locker room guy; "The alpha male that everyone follows around" according to Daniel Jeremiah. So how is it even conceivable that he'll fall so far? It's because (a) he's a player at a lower-priority position, Safety, who's the #3 talent behind two Top-5 guys in Jamal Adams and Malik Hooker, and (b) there is a lack of interceptions red flag (which Mayock & Crew poo-poohed as he looked utterly natural in all the drills). P.S. Jabrill Peppers is one of the top 2-3 punt returners in the draft as well. Note that Peppers' stock took a last minute hit due to reports of a "diluted sample" at the Combine.

There are enough scouting reports on this guy to make you sick, but they all say the same thing: athleticism is literally off the charts, but he needs some good coaching to reach his full potential, and a coordinator/system that can find the best ways to use his remarkably varied skill set. This Brett Kollman video scouting report is fascinating because the author started as a serious critic, was amazed by the Combine results, and then went back to see what the heck was really going on. Really good analysis. Critic or fan, this is a must-see. Seriously! Stop now and watch that video. If you don't, you are uninformed. It has my emphatic vote for scouting report of the year. Heck, Peppers himself wrote to acknowledge that Kollman got the analysis right from the X's and O's perspective.

This BTSC Fanpost by Ericsarmy has a lot of good analysis to start your research. Here is the CBS scouting profile, which will be updated as the process moves forward. This January scouting report is another good place to start. This goes to a full scouting report (January) from Walter Football. This January DraftWire article describes the pairing between Peppers and Pittsburgh as "a match made in football heaven." This scouting profile comes from a Steelers site, and would definitely agree. If that's not enough he also might be able to take some of the load off AB for kicks and has experience as a CB. Unfortunately he is probably on the edge of being an Ain't Gonna Happen player. This mid-February article has three scouting profiles to compare Budda Baker, Justin Evans, and Jabrill Peppers. This article compares 5 top safeties: Malik Hooker, Jamal Adams, Jabrill Peppers, Budda Baker, and Marcus Williams.

1:20

Gareon Conley, CB, Ohio State - 6'0", 195 lbs. 33" arms with 9-1/2" hands. Gareon Conley will likely go in the 1st round after a very impressive Combine that left Daniel Jeremiah saying, "He moves around like a Top 15 Corner." According to our own Nicholas.Martin: "Gareon Conley might be the most underrated player in this draft. I really thought [] I was going to walk away thinking Eli Apple (not a bad thing), but I saw something much better. [He's] fluid, [] he's got a nicely built frame, tackles nicely in run support, [] he's very sticky in man coverage, ... [and his] play recognition in zone coverage was some of the best I'd seen from this class." Sounds like a recommendation to me! This December scouting profile is a bit less enthusiastic about his tackling (it ends with an early-2nd grade), but agrees when it comes to the tools. Mayock's comments have been similar, including comments along these lines: "Finds the ball in the air. Good ball skills. [But] not physical enough in run support." Here is his NFL.com scouting report. This Brett Kollman video scouting report views Conley as a Patrick Peterson clone. We note that a woman accused Conley of rape two days before the draft, but we have not adjusted his grade because the accusation seems to lack any real credibility.

1:20

Mitchell Trubisky, QB, North Carolina - 6'3", 220 lbs. A 1-year starter. That's the problem. There's a lack of film and game experience on which to base a real opinion. With that understanding, Trubisky looks great, with excellent pocket presence, timing, accuracy, and a pro-level arm. He projects to be a very solid QB. But more than that? There's simply not enough data to goose the expectations much higher. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to an truly excellent, thorough and gif-heavy scouting report from our sister site for the Texans. Here is the Bucky Brooks Book on Trubisky (video and written), which ends with a comparison to Alex Smith. Here is a PFF scouting profile. This Bears-oriented scouting profile ends with a comparison to Matt Ryan. The full Walter Football scouting profile uses Ryan Tannehill as the comp. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Seahawks uses Andy Dalton as the comp. See the pattern?

1:20

Deshaun Watson, QB, Clemson - 6'2", 215 lbs. The most pro ready of the top four QB's, but maybe not the best fit for Pittsburgh. Watson has a lot of picks to his name, but he's a flat out winner and a leader who knows how to take a team on his back when the situation requires. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. Here is the Bucky Brooks Book on Watson (video and written), which seems to be a good and balanced review. The PFF scouting profile. This goes to the full Walter Football scouting profile.

1:20

O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama - 6'6", 251 lbs. with 33-3/4" arms and 10" hands. O.J. Howard dominated the 2015 national championship game so thoroughly that he came into 2016 as the clear #1 Tight End in the country. He's leaving for the 2017 draft as the even clearer #1, despite playing in a run first offense that treats TE's as an afterthought. That says something. Many believe that Alabama players seem to be better than they really are because of the talent around them, but no one says that about Howard. He is the real deal - a hyper-athletic superstar who can block and receive with equal facility. As Mike Mayock put it, "He has a complete game... blocking, intermediate, and deep... A vertical threat against both zone and man." His pro comp was emphatic: Greg Olsen. The CBS scouting profile is a great place to start your research. This January scouting profile provides another good introduction, in part because it emphasizes that Howard has room to get better in all aspects of his game. He is a kid who achieved stunning success through athleticism, not by having better skills and coaching. This January scouting profile provides an equally dispassionate "late 1st" grade. This January scouting profile from our sister site for the Panthers has an interesting comp: Julio Jones, rather than another Tight End. Read it; there's some logic to the comparison. See this scouting profile for an opposing point of view from an author who uses statistics to show that Howard's production didn't come close to the draft ranking his athletic skills would appear to justify. This goes to a scouting report from a Broncos site discussing the very real chance that Denver will target Howard in Round 1. This Brett Kollman video scouting report views Howard as one of the all time most-underused offensive players in CFB history. "A Ferrari kept in the parking lot; what's the point?"

1:25

Carl Lawson, Edge, Auburn - 6'2", 261 lbs. with short 31-1/2" arms and 10-3/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine and Pro Day] The big worries about Lawson have gone to his health. He tore his ACL as a sophomore, and last year had a hip injury that cost him six games. The news out of the Combine on this front was pretty good. Lawson said in his interview that he's been healthy for 18 months, and it is true that he played all of 2016. The downside of the Combine was some mixed testing. He came in with very short arms, which may have artificially inflated his best-of-class bench press numbers. A bit. The bigger concern was mobility. The NFL.com scouting profile is an interesting read because it assumes that what you saw in 2016 is what you will get in a fully healthy Lawson: "[A] linear player with natural power and aggressiveness, but a lack of flexibility could hamper his potential as an NFL rusher." He posted a hideous 3-cone time at the Combine, which tends to confirm that evaluation. So he's very strong and he bends okay, but he lacks a lot in the length department and his C.O.D. skills may be a serious problem. It should be noted that Lawson did look okay in the LB drills. Not great, but okay. Same thing with the jumps and other explosiveness tests. Okay, but just okay. On the plus side, it's clear that he is a tough guy and a gym rat who will excel in run stopping even if everything else fails to mature, and will fit just fine in a Pittsburgh locker room. His consistency issues can be attributed to 3 coordinators in the last 3 years (ouch).

This goes to a brief BTSC profile (the gif system being all fouled up). Here is the CBS scouting profile. This goes to a mid-January scouting report, which concludes with a Day 2 grade based on the injury concerns. This mid-January scouting report from DraftWire gives him a 1st-Round grade, noting "good but not great bend." This Cowboys oriented scouting profile concurs with the Round 1 grade. OTOH, this New Year's scouting report is a bit more critical, concluding with a 3rd-Round grade, and this January scouting profile agrees with that conclusion due to the "linear athlete" issue and his problems getting off blocks. This interesting PFF scouting profile notes some issues in run defense and ends with a comparison to Cameron Wake. Our own Nick Martin presents a spirited argument for Lawson's 1st Round status in his final Fear the Mock of 2017. Here are a set of recent scouting reports from our sister sites for the Bengals, for the Giants, for the Cowboys, and for the Falcons, plus another scouting profile from JetsWire.

1:25

Takkarist McKinley, Edge, UCLA - 6'2", 250 lbs. with very long 34-3/4" arms and 9-3/4" hands. [Meeting at the Combine & Visit] Keep an eye on this one! McKinley is an odd case for the Steelers because his college coach is Tom Bradley, the longtime Penn State coach who later worked for West Virginia and regularly consulted for the Steelers in the meantime. The team knows Bradley enough to rely completely on his insider's view. We at BTSC obviously don't have that resource, but it seems likely that McKinley will have either a much higher or much lower grade for Pittsburgh than he will for other teams. McKinley's Combine measurements match up to neither his film nor the expectations. E.g., he was supposed to be super-fast, looks that way on the film, and swears to having run a 4.4. In Indianapolis he ran a 4.59. Other tests were similarly off-kilter, and there will be no correction at his pro day because he just got shoulder surgery for a torn labrum he's played with for the past two years (3 month recovery time).

The biggest physical question is whether he has that unique gift for bending around the edge. The weirdest thing is that he never seemed to even try it until the last game or two of the season. Nor does he have anything else that resembles a pass rush. He just wins a lot with pure, untutored effort. The biggest off-field question goes to whether he has the above-the-neck firepower to learn a pro defense. This is based on the triple whammy of getting lost in several drills at the Combine (didn't he prepare at all?), rumors about a low-single-digit Wonderlic score (unconfirmed but widespread), and his failure to learn any developed technique despite playing for three years at UCLA (a real mystery). For more insight into the young man beneath the prospect, see this deep background L.A. Times article. This video interview for the Pac-12 Network looks at some of the same personal issues and motivations, and will give you some idea of how he thinks and speaks.

If you want to learn more, I would start with this very fun 24-minute video scouting report that describes McKinley as "100% effort and a$$-whoopin' and chase with no real technique." Everyone would agree with that, and also with his ability to set the edge and to do his job rather than running off to play hero. The NFL.com scouting profile loves his prospects overall, but does sound a cautionary note about McKinley's bend around the edge. This goes to a scouting report from November, and this to a Steelers oriented scouting report from mid-January. This January scouting profile emphasizes McKinley's ability to dip and bend, which is the major question mark that others have identified. Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins. McKinley was heavily debated here at BTSC in the Comments to this mid-March mock, which sent him to the Steelers at 1:30. Here is a March scouting profile from our sister site for the Falcons.

1:25

Budda Baker, S/CB, Washington - 5'10", 195 lbs. with 30-3/4" arms and 9" hands. [Meeting at Visit] What are the flaws? He's small. That about covers it. Budda Baker, Desmond King, and Chidobe Awuzie all ring a similar bell - the undersized guy who straddles the line between slot Corner and roving Safety. Baker is the best of the three, a remarkably good coverage guy who is also an explosive athlete that loves to hit. If he had two more inches and 15 more pounds he would be an easy Top 20 talent. The NFL.com scouting profile could not be more excited with the exception of a tendency to get "big boyed" by TE's, which is going to be unavoidable at his size. This excellent, gif-supported scouting report from a Bills site explains why people ‘in the know' like him so much. Phrases like "coach on the field" and "young Bob Sanders" catch the essence, especially if you consider that his coverage skills are close to being at the Cornerback level. This New Year scouting report uses Tyrann Mathieu as the comparison and uses phrases like "undersized heat seeking missile". Both seem apt, and are mirrored by the CBS scouting profile. This mid-February article has three scouting profiles to compare Budda Baker, Justin Evans, and Jabrill Peppers. This article compares 5 top safeties: Malik Hooker, Jamal Adams, Jabrill Peppers, Budda Baker, and Marcus Williams. This goes to a thorough, gif-supported scouting report. This scouting profile considers Baker's fit for the Browns, who will almost certainly grab one of these top Safety prospects on Day 2. This brief, one-gif scouting report is worth checking for the critiques, which are real even if they don't add up to enough to keep him from getting a fringe-1st grade. This goes to a collection of scouting opinions gathered by our sister site for the Panthers. Here is a 6-minute video scouting report. See this scouting profile for a more critical review ending with a late-3rd grade due primarily to size concerns.

1:25

Obi Melifonwu, S, Connecticut - 6'4", 224 lbs. with 32-1/2" arms and 9-1/8" hands. [Meeting at Visit] BTSC's film watchers unanimously predicted that Melifonwu will measure out as a SPARQ score wonder at the Combine. They could not have been more right. Melifonwu not only killed the testing, he tore it to shreds, chewed it to pulp, and then spat it out in the wind of his 4.40 dash or from the heights of his 44" vertical jump (at which he had the nerve to look disappointed). This goes to a New Year scouting profile that catches the gist: Melifonwu is right on the edge of being a hybrid SS/LB in the Jabrill Peppers mold, but didn't show the same level of extraordinary foot speed on film (though he certainly answered that in the testing). Here is a brief profile from a Cowboys POV. Here is a gif-supported scouting profile from our sister site for the Bills. This PFF scouting profile ends with a somewhat obvious analogy to being a more athletic Kam Chancellor. This goes to a full length Walter Football scouting profile. This goes to one of the slew of post-Combine overreaction scouting profiles, this one from a Lions perspective.

1:25

Adoree Jackson, CB, USC - 5'10", 186 lbs. 31-3/8" arms with 9-1/4" hands. Adoree Jackson is a playmaker who happens to be of moderate size, and located at the cornerback position. Playmaker first; corner second. These quotes from the Combine coverage say it all: "He has a chance to be a special player when he lears to play Corner... Late 1st Round... Never played Spring ball because of track... Fantastice ball skills but with lots of room to improve his technique... Needs to learn press... Special with the ball in his hands... The best athlete in the class... Best kick returner in the draft." Get it? Adoree Jackson has a limitless ceiling, but won't be much help to anyone but the special teams coach before Year 2. This goes to a gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Bills, which concludes that Jackson would be an all-star in off- or zone coverage, but wasted on press man. This goes to the CBS scouting profile, which is worth a look. This goes to an exceptional gif-supported scouting report from BillsWire.

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Marlon Humphrey, CB, Alabama - 6'0", 197 lbs. 32-1/4" arms with 8-3/4" hands. [Meeting at Visit] A big, tall corner with a knack for very "sticky" coverage, but well-known problems getting his head around and finding the ball in the air. How solvable is that? Hard to say. For some players it's simply a matter of professional-level coaching (a poor excuse for a kid from Alabama). Others never quite get it. Humphrey is the son of Bobby Humphrey, a 1989 1st-Rounder for Denver. According to Mike Mayock, "The issue is ball skills: (A) finding it, and (B) making the play." Deion Sanders response was, "That's something you can't fix. You can't fix ball skills." Hence the reason why we continue to grade him lower than many other sites.

This goes to a January scouting report that concludes with a mid- to late-1st grade. That seems to be about the average. We've applied a bit of a discount due to the "Alabama factor" that you need to assume their players have already gotten better and more professional coaching than their peers. The NFL.com scouting profile is worth a read, as it lists a number of technical issues despite rating him as the #3 Corner prospect overall based on his exceptional combination of height, weight, and speed. This January scouting profile views him as a Size XL, 1st-round zone corner because of issues with getting his head around (mentioned elsewhere too), combined with great reaction time and physicality. This fine New Year scouting profile agrees: a decent enough man-coverage prospect who could be spectacular in a Tampa Two scheme. This January scouting profile ends with a late-1st grade even after applying "the Alabama curse, which is the fact that he is probably already maxed out in terms of potential thanks to a great defensive staff and great surrounding talent." This brief scouting profile emphasizes Humphrey's native advantages of height and speed. This brief January scouting profile (from a set of 10) ranks Humphrey at #2 in the class.

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Kevin King, CB, Washington - 6'3", 200 lbs. with 32" arms and 9-1/2" hands. King is an astonishing athlete who blew up the Combine and promises to be the next big thing in long press corners - though he also has experience playing well in both zone and off coverage. Versatility is an asset. He even comes from a program that has been a genuine factory for high quality Corners in recent years, including both Marcus Peters and this year's premium prospect, Sidney Jones. About the Combine... It's hard to emphasize how phenomenal a performance he put on. It wasn't just the 4.43 dash - that was the number where he failed to be best in show. The most impressive parts were his top scores - at 6'3"! - in the 3-cone, short shuttle, and long shuttle tests. That is nothing short of astonishing. He unquestionably has a lot of work to do in order to bring his technique up to NFL standards, but the ceiling on this kid has almost no limit. This goes to the CBS scouting profile, which is worth a read. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile, which worries about his speed and C.O.D. (Wrong!). To be fair, there are also some concerns about his tackling, but that is true of most college Corners and, as discussed in this gif-supported scouting report, he has the right attitude. This February scouting profile ends with a Round 3 grade. This pre-Combine March scouting report also ends with a Round 3 grade based on speed questions (answered) and lack of polish. This brief scouting profile makes the obvious comparison to Richard Sherman - which others seem to do, since King often gets mocked to Seattle. This thorough, gif-supported, Bills oriented scouting report examines many parts of King's game before ending with an "early Round 2" grade.

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Deshone Kizer, QB, Notre Dame - 6'4", 230 lbs. [Meeting at the Combine] The most prototypical NFL quarterback of the class from the physical point of view. He was on a lot of people's Top 10 lists going into the season and looked great for the first few games. Then the wheels came off of Notre Dame's offensive line, and his game followed downhill. The biggest question marks are psychological - does he have that mysterious 'something' that lets some young men lead others on the field when the chips are down? Or was he exposed in 2015 as a purely physical talent who's missing that requisite magic on the inside? Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. Here is a nice scouting report from PFF with some interesting stats like this: "Had a passer rating of 154.7 when using play action, best in the nation. Passer rating dropped to 85.5 when not using play action, tied for 62nd in the nation." This goes to the full Walter Football scouting profile. Here is an exceptionally thorough, gif-heavy scouting report from our sister site for the Texans. Here is a Fanpost scouting profile from Niners Nation.

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Patrick Mahomes II, QB, Texas Tech - 6'2", 225 lbs. with 33-1/4" arms and 9-1/4" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] A BTSC favorite, Mahomes is one of the fastest rising prospects in the draft and very likely to be picked in Round 1 by a team that needs a QB badly enough to accept the risks that go with his rawness. The NFL Combine coverage emphasized that he is a multisport athlete who was drafted by the Tigers for baseball and only dedicated his full attention to quarterbacking a year ago. The development since then has been particularly rapid, and by all accounts he thoroughly "wowed" one and all in the Combine interviews as well as on the field. A good place to start your own research would be the in-depth breakdown our own Nicholas.Martin put together on the quarterback. He has tremendous arm talent but is a bit on the smaller side and has footwork that needs to be completely revamped. Nevertheless, those who watch his film come away wowed because he flashes every kind of skill you could want in a QB. This goes to a positive, gif-heavy scouting report that's worth a thorough read. This goes to one of Matt Waldman's epic, hour long video scouting reports. His conclusion is fun: "I think he's like an all-pro shortstop playing QB. How does that play out? It's hard to say."

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David Njoku, TE, Miami - 6'4", 246 lbs. with crazy long 35-1/4" arms and 10" hands. O.J. Howard is the consensus #1 TE in this draft. Redshirt sophomore David Njoku is rapidly emerging as the consensus #2. By all accounts he is an athletic freak of the highest caliber. Heck, he was the national high jump champion in High School, and the Combine scores support what everyone saw on film. According to Mayock & crew, he is "A better athlete with better hands than Eric Ebron", who was drafted at 1:10 in 2014. The Steelers have a solid TE core in Ladarius Green and Jesse James, but no more than that: Green has been hurt far more than he's been healthy, often with the dreaded malady of repeat concussions, and James has grown into a competent NFL contributor who will probably not mature into a star. That leaves room for a true #1 to convert a solid asset into an area of dominant strength. Njoku might be just the talent to do that. Njoku was was #13 overall on Daniel Jeremiah's January Big Board, so there's one respected scout with a real opinion. This goes to a wordy but still useful scouting profile from early January. Here is a scouting profile from a Broncos site.

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Christian McCaffrey, RB/WR, Stanford - 5' 11", 202 lbs. with 30" arms and 9" hands. McCaffrey is the only running back in the entire draft with a 1st round grade on the BTSC Board. It's not that he's a better back than guys like Fournette. He's not. The key is that McCaffrey's skill set would allow him to stay on the field when Lev Bell is also there. McCaffrey does what Bell does in the sense that he could start in the NFL at either RB or WR, but he does it from a different angle. Where Bell comes at it as a power back with surprising speed and the abilities of a possession receiver, McCaffrey is a speed back with surprising power, the abilities of a super shifty slot receiver, and the durability to average 30 touches per game in both 2015 and 2016. He's also the single best returner in the entire draft and has NFL bloodlines through his Dad, the very estimable receiver Ed McCaffrey. Our own Nicholas.Martin points to this article about his work ethic, as if there was any doubt. Here is a YouTube video scouting profile. This goes to his NFL.com scouting profile, which compares him to Tiki Barber. Here is the Walter Football RB page. Even the doubters had to step back when McCaffrey flat out owned the Combine.

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Jonathan Allen, DL/Edge, Alabama - 6'3", 286 lbs. with 33-5/8" arms and 9-3/8" hands. A pure 4-3 Defensive End with the ability to slide inside at play DT too. Not at all a fit for Pittsburgh, but so good at these roles that he might be worth the pick anyway. The distinctions between 4-3 and 3-4 systems have been slowly dissolving in any event, so it wouldn't be as big a leap in this year as might be true for a decade ago. It's all moot, however. Jonathan Allen is a Top 10 pick all day, every day, and I've seen him as the #1 overall on some outlying Boards. There are concerns that could lead to a drop: he does not get off the line fast enough and there are injury concerns. Six months ago, he was projected mid to late first round, but his late season performance has given him a bump in the eyes of the press. He's a real student of the game, and the Steelers would be lucky to have him, despite his not fitting mold as a real run stopping D-Lineman; more of a pass rusher, but he doesn't limit himself. Here's the NFL scouting profile if you want a link to look at.

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Tyus Bowser, Edge, Houston - 6'3", 247 lbs. with 33-1/4" arms and 10-1/8" hands. [Meeting probable but unconfirmed. Both Tomlin and Colbert went to Bowser's pro day]. As discussed in the NFL.com scouting profile, Tyus Bowser is an edge rusher with tremendous natural tools when it comes to explosiveness, bend around the corner, and even coverage - his 2015 bowl game, where he blanketed Dalvin Cook 40 yards downfield, still gets discussed. Bowser confirmed his athletic tools by killing the Combine and setting the top SPARQ score mark in this year's class (top 5% of all NFL pass rushers). The issues are that he's new to the game and thus very raw when it comes to actual technique. His first love was basketball, which pretty much guarantees that he can play in space. It's an intriguing combination that could put him right on the edge of consideration for the Steelers pick at 1:30, and almost a favorite if they do not address the position until Round 2. Note that there may be a behavioral red flag related to missing games from a broken bone suffered in a fight with his teammate.

This goes to a nice article on his Senior Bowl successes from a Saints point of view. This goes to a solid scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets, which ends with a Round 2 grade even before the Combine. This pre-Combine article from Baltimore Beatdown agrees: 2nd Round. This April scouting profile from our sister site for the Falcons agrees with the Round 2 grade and suggests that Bowser's development will depend in large part on his work in the weight room. This Broncos-oriented scouting report ends with a comparison to Bud Dupree. This late March scouting profile describes Bowser as a "Bruce Irvin type" with the potential to become a much more rounded player - eventually. The PFF scouting profile concludes that "Bowser is about as raw as one could possibly be with four years of major college football under his belt" but agrees that, like Connor Barwin, he has the potential to mature into a very fine player down the road. If you want an even more positive outlook, see this Dolphins-oriented scouting profile: "Bowser is disruptive. Bowser is lethal. Bowser is underrated. Bowser will produce." This goes to another positive scouting profile, from FalconsWire. Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants. Here is a brief Steelers-oriented scouting profile. This interesting article compares Tyus Bowser and T.J. Watt to Khalil Mack, legitimately from the athletic measurements point of view.

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Taco Charlton, Edge, Michigan - 6'6", 277 lbs. with 34-1/4" arms and 9-3/4" hands. [Meeting at Pro Day] Up and down and up. That's Taco Charlton when it comes to the BTSC Big Board. The main issue is whether he has the movement skills to drop in coverage as often as Pittsburgh would require. Everyone agrees that is less important than either pass rush skills or setting the edge in the run game, both of which he is good at. But OLB's drop a lot, so it isn't something you can simply ignore. His performance in the LB drills at the Combine was, in a word, putrid. But it now seems that he looked much better in the LB drills at his pro day. We are applying a small discount to split the difference - your personal Board should have him either higher or lower depending on your view of his ability to play in space. The NFL.com scouting profile pegs inconsistency and various intangibles as the biggest issues. The CBS scouting profile is similar, but considers him a pure 4-3 DE. This January scouting report praises Charlton's exceptional speed and the fact that he has a lot of untapped ceiling, ending with a Top 20 grade. This similarly thoughtful January scouting report ends with a late-1st grade due to his extremely raw skill set and questions about why he didn't appear on the scene until his Senior year. This late January scouting profile calls him an "ideal edge prospect" with "elite traits," but concludes with a Round 2 grade because of high pad level that particularly shows up on run downs. This January scouting profile from a Titans site agrees with the assets, drawbacks, and Round 2 grade. Here is another January scouting profile that, lo and behold, ends with an early Round 2 grade.

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Derek Rivers, Edge, Youngstown - 6'4" 248 lbs. with 32-3/4" arms and 9-3/8" hands. [Meeting at the Senior Bowl, Combine, Pro Day & Visit] A consistent player with good burst, dip, and heavy hands. Rivers put up stellar numbers across his last 3 years, averaging 12 sacks a year. He has shown lapses in gap awareness and had difficulties in the run game. There are concerns about his agility and length which could make the transition to the NFL a bumpy one when combined with questions about his ability to counter a good running OL. His NFL.com scouting profile paints him as backup player with the potential for more. OTOH, he looked awfully good during the Senior Bowl practices... Bottom line: Rivers has the physical tools and looked good at the Senior Bowl, but small school pass rushers carry a lot of risk because the level of competition shows up even more here than at other positions. This goes to a top notch, gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Falcons. This January scouting profile from a Browns site quotes a physical comparison to Connor Barwin. This admiring, gif-supported February scouting profile from a Dallas fan ends with a Round 2 grade. Here is a pair: one scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants and another scouting profile from our sister site for the Falcons. This scouting profile comes from our sister site for the Redskins. This 40-minute epic video scouting report from Matt Waldman and Justis Mosqueda shows Rivers to be a player whose burst, dip, and strength at the point of attack were overwhelming at the college level, but whose lack of an inside counter and other technical issues will limit him at the NFL level for a year or two.

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Zach Cunningham, ILB, Vanderbilt - 6'3", 234 lbs. with 34-3/8" arms and 9-3/4" hands. [Meeting at Visit] People have compared Zach Cunningham to Ryan Shazier because he comes out of college with a similar game based on lightning acceleration through the hole, tremendous speed for covering sideline to sideline, excellent football IQ, and flawed tackling technique that will drive his coaches crazy. But Ryan Shazier ran in the 4.3's at the Combine, which linebackers simply do not do. How will Cunningham measure on the SPARQ scale? That, as they say, is the question. If he comes even close to sniffing what Shazier accomplished, he will be the #1 non-rush linebacker in the class. Period, end of story. If he's just a bit behind... it might create an interesting situation for Pittsburgh if a couple of free agency cards fall in such a way that ILB becomes a bigger need. Here is the CBS scouting profile. This thorough, gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Rams pegs him as the clear #1 ILB, but still just a fringe-1st guy. As noted above, that will only change if he drops a few jaws at the Combine. This January scouting report agrees: fringe-1st, and a better prospect than Reuben Foster if you're looking for the prototype Mack rather than the classic Buck. This gif-supported January scouting report could have come from the same author. The consensus is that solid. This Brett Kollman video scouting report considers Cunningham a "slam dunk 1st rounder."

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Sidney Jones, CB, Washington - 6'0", 186 lbs. with 31-1/2" arms and 9-3/8" hands. INJURY Sidney Jones was destined to be a Top 3 Corner in this class (#12 overall on Daniel Jeremiah's January Big Board) until he tore an achilles tendon at a workout on March 11. How far will he fall? Guaranteed Top 5 LB Jaylon Smith fell to Dallas at 2:34 in 2016 after destroying his knee. Smith was a superior talent but suffered a worse injury, so the one-round drop could be about right. According to Dr. Internet Jones will be unable to seriously practice for 6-9 months, Which translates to September at the earliest and December for the conservative. That's too much to expect for a rookie, so you really need to write of Year 1 completely. If he drops to Pittsburgh at 2:30, expect the Steelers to seriously consider a run at him. Failing to pull the trigger at 3:30 would deserve some outrage.

As summarized in the January scouting report, Jones has all the length and talent you look for, combined with a very high football IQ and character that give him a higher floor than we're used to seeing in CB prospects. Washington's defensive scheme left Jones on an island for a lot of the time so that Safety Budda Baker could gad about and be a playmaker. Jones, playing off coverage, was inevitably up to the task. That football IQ will translate to zone coverage as well. He's a bit on the slight side for press coverage (some weight room work will be in order), but is a willing tackler despite that. This December scouting report is very similar. The NFL.com scouting profile summarizes a very common analogy: "he picked up all of [former teammate] Marcus Peters' good traits as a player without the personality defects. He marries that great FBI (football intelligence) with an explosive close-out and that will win in the pros just like it wins in college. You will always wish he was 198 pounds, but he won't be." The PFF scouting profile notes that Jones allowed no (zero) TD's in 2016, and compares him to Jonathan Joseph, which also seems like a good one. Here is a nice gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Packers.

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Jordan Willis, Edge/ILB, Kansas State - 6'4", 255 lbs. with 33-1/4" arms and 10-1/8" hands. [Meeting probable but not confirmed] The NFL.com scouting profile could not laud a player's heart and character any more, but the weaknesses were pretty damning compared to what the Steelers are looking for. "[A] straight-liner mover... Very deliberate... one-speed rusher lacking dynamic qualities to turn corner for tight loops." This BTSC article by Steel34D pointed to exactly the same issue: problems flattening the arc. His stock went up a good bit when he set the 2nd-highest SPARQ score at the Combine (behind only Tyus Bowser), with results measuring in the 94th percentile of all NFL Edge guys - a pretty elite group to begin with. Even better, those scores included both the explosiveness tests like jumps, and the mobility ones like the 3-cone drill and the short shuttle. Enter this amazingly nuanced, gif-supported scouting report by our own Nick Martin, who points to specific footwork flaws that could explain why the tape doesn't show the sort of mobility that the testing says Willis ought to have.

Mike Mayock particularly praised his very strong hands, and said he "does everything well." Here is a February scouting profile from our sister site for the Falcons. This solid article from a Miami area paper examines Willis' playing style and his admiration of Cameron Wake. This goes to a nice scouting profile from FalconsWire. Here is a scouting profile so odd I almost threw it out; the author praises Willis' ability to dip, while questioning his explosiveness: exactly the opposite of everyone else. YMMV. This Patriots-oriented scouting profile is much more in line with BTSC's own film watchers: "Despite his amazing results at the Combine, I did not see a player who played to those athletic traits on a consistent basis. I was shocked at his 3-cone and shuttle times because on tape he does not have good change of direction and bend. In the games I watched, I saw a guy who struggled to bend the edge because of his tight hips..." This scouting profile from PFF deserves to be quoted too: "There was no more productive edge player in our grading system than Willis, but when forced to go up against quality competition at the Senior Bowl practices he was one of the lowest-graded." This post-Combine scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants considers Willis a solid mid-round possibility. Here's a scouting profile from Hogs Haven. Has Jordan Willis met with the Steelers? We can't confirm it, but the odds say "Yes." According to this article, "There are 30 teams [out of 32] who have scheduled individual workouts with Willis." It is hard to believe that Pittsburgh would be one of the two that didn't. We do the team had someone at the KSU pro day, but the major brass was at Youngstown's simultaneous pro day, which featured Derek Rivers.

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Jarrad Davis, ILB, Florida - 6'1", 238 lbs. with 33-1/2" arms and 9-1/2" hands. [Meeting at Visit] Another natural fit for the Mack ILB position if the Steelers feel a need to add a second version of Shazier. Here is a BTSC scouting profile by Dan Sager. The comp used in this scouting report is Sean Lee, which actually seems fair. Davis may not be the athletic miracle that is Ryan Shazier, but he's not that far behind. The issues revolve more around a need for lots of focused training and coaching to discipline his wild, playmaking impulses into something that won't disrupt the rest of the defense. Once that happens... watch out. This goes to an entertaining and interesting CBS scouting profile, with gems like this: "Davis plays with an Energizer bunny's motor..." The NFL.com scouting profile describes a tremendous athlete with an incredible need for advanced coaching - just the kind of person the Steelers might be able to steal at the end of Round 2. Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants. Here is the PFF scouting profile, which emphasizes his lack of tackling technique - an area that coaching and work can really improve. This goes to a scouting profile from RaidersWire.

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Justin Evans, S, Texas A&M - 6'0", 199 lbs. with 32" arms and 9-3/4" hands. Justin Evans is a versatile Safety who can play center fielder using his tremendous speed and ball skills, or drop into the box to deliver some serious hits, or play Nickel DB to counter the quickness of running backs and slot receivers. Most Nickel DB's are Corners who can tackle, but many of the best are Safeties who can cover. That's Justin Evans. The NFL.com scouting profile emphasizes his "easy feet and hips ... [that] might lead a team to test him out as a slot corner," "excellent passion for the game," and "ball skills of a slot receiver." High praise indeed! His only flaw? He needs some weight room work to fill in his frame, and some good professional coaching to develop that misleading word called "instincts." In other words, he sounds a lot like the description you'd give of both Mike Mitchell and Sean Davis. Is there room for a third Safety at that level of fringe all-pro production? You'd have to say "yes" since so many snaps are spent in Nickel. Three Safeties and two Corners would work just as well as two Safeties and three Corners, if all the Safeties are really that good. This January scouting profile seems fair enough before ending with a stunningly low 4th-Round grade (odd enough that I suspect a typo). This DraftWire article concludes with a Top 40 grade, which sounds closer to right. This goes to a brief but solid and gif-supported scouting report. This scouting profile from a Dallas point of view reflects the swirling rumors that connect him to the Cowboys. This article considers his fit with the Browns. This mid-February article has three scouting profiles to compare Budda Baker, Justin Evans, and Jabrill Peppers (I would throw in Chidobe Awuzie and Desmond King for a more complete set of this year's premier Nickel DB prospects).

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Josh Jones, S, N.C. State - 6'1", 220 lbs. with 32" arms and 9-3/8" hands. [Meeting at Visit] The NFL.com scouting profile starts by noting Jones' prototypical size and speed, emphasizes his aggressiveness, and then concludes with what seems to be a fair comparison to Mike Mitchell. Buzz built around Jones following a fabulous Combine, but settled a bit with some only-okay numbers in the agility drills (short shuttle and 3-cone) at his pro day. Interviews will mean everything for Mr. Jones. He has the physical talent and the defensive attitude to really upgrade Pittsburgh's depth at the Safety position. The only questions are whether he can understand a complicated NFL defense, and play with the discipline required of a Steeler Safety. This SteelersWire article considers his fit for Pittsburgh in particular, just as this CardinalsWire article addresses his fit for Pittsburgh West. Here is a brief scouting profile from a Bills POV. This anti-hype scouting profile ends with a Round 4 grade by disputing the love-of-hitting that others have emphasized. This link goes to a discussion on Josh Jones at a Falcons site. This solid scouting profile also emphasizes his lack of discipline, while praising his overall talents and ability to fit any kind of scheme, including Mike Tomlin's beloved Cover 2 defenses that require such varied talents at the Safety position. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins calls Jones a Round 1 talent who's likely to fall into Round 2.

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Marcus Williams, S, Utah - 6'1", 202 lbs. with 32-1/2" arms and 9-1/2" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] A very fast, very rangy center fielder with great leaping ability and ball skills who probably qualifies as the #2 prospect at the pure Free Safety position (behind only Malik Hooker). The Combine proved that he's also a truly elite athlete, with scores like a 43-1/2" vertical that put him in the top 7% of all NFL defensive backs. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile, which really criticizes nothing except his lack of oomph as a hitter. This article compares 5 top safeties: Malik Hooker, Jamal Adams, Jabrill Peppers, Budda Baker, and Marcus Williams. This goes to a local news article on the Combine performances of Utes Brian Allen and Marcus Williams. Here is the PFF scouting profile, which includes the interesting fact that Williams - a rangy free safety - had the "highest run-stop percentage [and] second-highest tackle efficiency against run of all FBS safeties in 2016." Hmmm. This scouting profile ends with a conservative Round 3 grade. Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins.

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Chidobe Awuzie, CB/S Colorado - 6'0", 202 lbs. with 30-5/8" arms and 8-1/2" hands. Budda Baker, Desmond King, and Chidobe Awuzie all ring a similar bell - the undersized guy who straddles the line between slot Corner and roving Safety. Awuzie's experience in all those positions - and as a boundary corner too - make him (and the others) a particularly desirable prospect for a team like Pittsburgh that can use scheme-versatile puzzle pieces as much as players who fit the standard profile. Awuzie's stock would be even higher if he was just a bit more "special" at any of those jobs. Physically, he checks off every box you want: quickness, length, physicality, ability to mirror, hands (despite a lack of interceptions), click-and-close, etc. His long speed had been questioned until the 4.44 Combine dash. Awuzie's overall technique is excellent too, with the exception of some hesitation when it comes to tackling big TE's and backs. Mike Mayock is a major fan: "[He may be] a little tight hipped, but I don't care. This kid knows football. [He] is a starting Nickel Day 1." Okay.

Here are the CBS scouting profile and the NFL.com scouting profile. This gif-supported scouting report ends with a solid Round 2 grade. This gif-supported scouting report from BillsWire agrees, adding that Awuzie is known for "stellar character both on and off the field." This January scouting profile touts Awuzie's "exceptional fluidity" and feel for the game. This brief January scouting profile (from a set of 10) lumps Awuzie' and Desmond King together as "really good nickel corner-safety hybrids" who lack the pure speed to hold up if left on an island. Here is a brief scouting profile from a Cleveland source. This links to a nice scouting profile from Denver, where he played his college ball.

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Fabian Moreau, CB, UCLA - 6'0", 206 lbs. with 31-3/8" arms and 9" hands. As summarized in this BTSC scouting profile, Moreau is a fluid, scheme-versatile Corner who can play press, off and zone coverage with equal facility. He also understands how to play team defense and rarely gets shifted out of position. The drawbacks are a tendency to bite on double moves, which experience will cure, and hints that he might suffer from Ike Taylor Stone Hands Syndrome. Interestingly, his defensive coordinator at UCLA was Tom Bradley, a former defensive backfield assistant coach/consultant for the Steelers. Reports say that Bradley adores Fabian Moreau as both a physical talent and a fine young man. There's also just one year of real production due to a 2015 foot injury (Lisfranc). Moreau stood out big-time at the Shrine Game, and has been called "the best Corner there" by Mike Mayock. At the Combine, which he killed with SPARQ tests in the top 2% of all NFL Corners, Mayock said, "The worst case scenario to me is [that he's] a 2nd Round player... Everything is smooth and under control." Here are the NFL.com scouting profile and the CBS scouting profile. This goes to a January scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants. This profile from a UCLA fan site gives some useful information from a different angle. This Chiefs-oriented scouting profile notes that Moreau's 2015 season was lost to a lisfranc injury, which distorts a lot of his film. This scouting profile ends with a solid Day 2 grade. Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins.

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Jalen "Teez" Tabor, CB, Florida - 6'0", 199 lbs. 32" arms with 8-5/9" hands. Teez Tabor came into 2016 as the Gators' Heir to Vernon Hargreaves, and was easily the most touted CB in the country - in part because he is a relentless and loud self promoter. Then he performed up to standard but not really beyond it, disappointing all those with Top 5 stars in their eyes. Some really awful times at the Combine (4.62 and poor jumps), with even worse results at his pro day, raise questions about his physical assets. The reality is that he's an excellent college corner with all the size, speed (on the field if not the track), and quickness you could ask for. He's also a potential headache, but it will be someone else's headache when all is said and done. His film is too good to see him falling to Pittsburgh, and his personality too loud to make him a happy fit. This goes to the CBS scouting profile. This gif-supported January scouting report seems to be both thorough and competent. This January scouting report from a Cowboys site is also worth a read.

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Cordrea Tankersley, CB, Clemson - 6'1", 199 lbs. with 32-1/4" arms and 9-1/8" hands. Tankersley is your classic fringe-1st corner who will fall in a draft this deep despite some excellent size, excellent speed, and the ability to stick to almost any receiver he came across in college. Measured well SPARQ-wise except for a shockingly awful vertical jump (29"). His limitations include good but not awesome speed, and a number of technical issues that need to be cleaned up, such as a tendency to get handsy. The reviews on his tackling range from "awful" to "willing but poor." This goes to the CBS scouting profile, always a good place to start. This glowing January scouting report suggests that Tankersley could double as a Safety. If so, his stock would definitely go up on this Board. He gets a very high grade on the NFL.com scouting profile too. This Titans-oriented scouting profile views Tankersley as a perfect #2 CB prospect, with a very high floor but a limited ceiling. "Reliable" would be a word approved by the folks who wrote the PFF scouting profile. This goes to an upbeat but not quite glowing, gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Eagles. This Chiefs-oriented scouting profile agrees with the consensus, and seems to project a very solid Round 2 grade. As noted in this decent scouting profile, Tankersley has a real reputation for trash talk too. This grade-oriented scouting profile is interesting for what's between the lines - Tankersley is very good in almost every category, but doesn't stand out as great in any of them.

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Tre'Davious White, CB, LSU - 5'11", 192 lbs. 32-1/8" arms with 9-1/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] White is one of those quicker-than-fast types (a marvelous punt returner) who thrives on sticking to the hip pocket of virtually any college receiver he came across. Mayock calls him a versatile player who excels best in press coverage. Tre White has the fluidity, balance, and quick feet required to do the job, but it will take him some time to refine his college technique down to the exacting requirements needed to take the next step, and depending on his study habits that could taken a couple of years. He could also do with some added strength. OTOH, White had some very impressive Senior Bowl practices that raised a lot of eyebrows, and he'd already been placed at #19 overall on Daniel Jeremiah's January Big Board. A lousy Combine may have pushed him down some boards. This Brett Kollman video scouting report considers him a high-floor, medium-ceiling prototype who will be superb in the slot but lacks the superb recovery speed needed to play against major speed on the outside, nor the explosiveness to excel in off coverage. I recommend starting with this thorough, gif-heavy scouting report. This December scouting profile is pretty solid, despite the age. This scouting profile from a Patriots site is doubly fun because he wrote it for the 2016 draft, and has republished it with new observations. Here is a PFF scouting profile. This links to another decent scouting profile. This goes to a very brief scouting profile from November. Here is the CBS scouting profile. This goes to a scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins.

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Alvin Kamara, RB, Tennessee - 5' 10", 214 lbs. with 32-3/4" arms and 9/-1/4" hands. Kamara and Curtis Samuel are the only running backs besides McCaffrey who might earn consideration from the Steelers in the first two rounds. Kamara is a fast, slashing runner with excellent speed, tremendous receiving ability/hands, and amazing kick return skills. There were two team suspensions for ‘behavioral issues', so proving that he's coachable will be important. He also needs to work on his ball security and some technical issues that pro coaching should be able to solve. The bottom line is this: Kamara is no-kidding good enough at both to stay on the field with Bell as opposed to just replacing him when the need arises, and thus fills several small Steeler holes in one package (backup RB, return ace, miscellaneous offensive weapon, upgrade on Toussaint). That's where his value lies. I recommend starting with this gif-heavy, analytical scouting report from our sister site for the Eagles, which concludes that Kamara is a better version of Danny Woodhead. This fine scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets also ends with a fringe-1st value in line with our thinking. This January scouting profile is as critical as you'll find, largely based on a supposed ‘lack of power to move the pile' that both the NFL.com scouting profile and his 215 pound size would dispute. This Patriots-oriented scouting profile compares Kamara to Duke Johnson, which seems apt. This February, Tampa-oriented scouting profile was posted in response to a Daniel Jeremiah mock that sent Kamara to the Buccaneers at 1:19 (a grade Mike Mayock would not dispute). This particularly critical scouting profile thinks Kamara is in serious need of weight room work and ends with a shocking Round 4 grade. Here is a YouTube video scouting report that ends with a Round 4 grade based on durability concerns. This typically-careful scouting report from Matt Waldman also avoids the hype train due to decision-making concerns. This goes to an interesting scouting profile posted after Mayock's "Wow, 1st-round" comments. It concludes that Kamara is an ideal split-the-load runner rather than a 25 carry-per-game workhorse. The Walter Football RB page compares him to a Jamaal Charles runner with "phenomenal" receiving skills.

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John Ross, WR, Washington - 5'11", 188 lbs. with 31-1/2" arms and 8-3/4" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] A deep threat with 4.22 (the new record!) speed and darned good quickness. He'll need some time to build some strength and become a complete receiver, but it's a moot point; he'll be gone long before he'd make sense for the Steelers. FWIW, the NFL Network crew report that he also blew people away in the interviews with an impressive combination of humility, politeness, and a darned good mind. Definitely a player to root for when he isn't playing against your team. Here are the NFL.com scouting profile and the Walter Football WR summaries. Any more would be a waste of space. This set of WR scouting profiles from our sister site for the Rams includes one on John Ross.

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Tarell Basham, Edge, Ohio - 6'4", 269 lbs. with very long 34-1/4" arms and 10-1/4" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Tarell Basham is one of the small-school pass rushing phenoms of this year's class, and earned a solid Round 2-3 grade from Mike Mayock. "He can really play." The CBS scouting profile describes Basham as "a man among boys" in the MAC who simply overwhelmed opposing tackles with his speed, explosiveness, and bend around the edge. Like Javon Hargrave last year, the question is whether small school triumphs will translate to NFL success. The NFL.com scouting profile emphasizes his total lack of pass rushing moves while praising his "alpha" physicality and motor. This less-optimistic December scouting report from our sister site for the Jets also questions Basham's ability to play in space, thus justifying a Round 6 grade. This more recent April scouting profile ends with a more reasonable Round 2 grade. The PFF scouting profile notes his "suspect flexibility" and describes him as looking like a poor man's Ryan Kerrigan, which actually seems kind of fair so long as you remember it's all projection rather than conclusion. Here is an article from his hometown paper.

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Joe Mathis, Edge, Washington - 6'2", 266 lbs. with long 33" arms and 9" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] First things first - here is the early process BTSC Scouting Report from Nicholas.Martin. You should also start your study with this equally good and equally early scouting report from the well-respected Jon Ledyard. Both argue that Mathis is an extremely well rounded and productive pass rusher, whose absence from an injured foot made a huge difference to a very good defensive unit. And it's not just those two. Here is a gushing youtube film review by Matt Waldman, an admiring scouting report from New England, and he has been in the Bleacher Report Top 50-75 for months. For a totally different view, see the NFL.com scouting profile, which considers Mathis a somewhat plodding power player who lacks the athleticism to play in space. So the bottom line comes down to a lot of unknowns. How much dip does he really have around the edge? There's a lack of film to tell us. How fast is his first step compared to some of the freak athletes we're comparing him to? How does he fit on the scale of pure explosiveness? Can he play in space?

The film is missing because Mathis got hurt after 6 wildly successful games as a 2016 starter - his only ones. The early reports suggested that it should have cleared up around the new year. In January he said that it was "100% healed". But then he did not participate in the drills at either the Combine or his pro day with the exception of an extraordinary bench press (32 reps with those long arms! 40 at his private workout!), a number that would have ranked first among linebackers at the combine and eighth overall. The results of his individual workout show an athlete who is amazingly strong but not a smooth mover in space. Alas but there are not numbers beyond the 40 reps and what looks like a really awful vertical jump. The comparison to Terrell Suggs seems most apt. Like Suggs, Mathis is a gamer who gets results, but he does it through an oddball combination of physical traits that make up for other ones he's missing. That dichotomy creates risk, which is what drops his grade down to fringe-2nd despite the tape. Here is a recent, draft-week article.

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Dawuane Smoot, Edge, Illinois - 6'3", 264 lbs. with 33-1/4" arms and 9-1/4" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Slippery, quick, and what every offensive tackle would describe as ‘a pain in the butt'. Dawuane Smoot's tape has all the assets you look for: a tremendous first step, that much-desired ability to dip around the edge, good strength, the size to hold up against the run, and the ability to convert speed into power. But he's also as raw as can be, and athleticism alone won't do the trick in the NFL. The interviews will be a big key for Mr. Smoot. If he's got the right internals, there's little doubt that he will become a star once the coaches get done remolding his game. "If." We, of course, can't be sure of that. Regardless, he will also require a redshirt rookie year while he struggles to learn his trade - and will no doubt fail a lot in the meantime. Mike Mayock acknowledged all the raw talents, but also noted that he's been mauled whenever he ran up against big, powerful Tackles - which is all he'd face in the NFL. Smoot is another prospect whose SPARQ tests don't remotely resemble the things that people saw on film. The numbers show zero explosiveness and slow feet; exactly the opposite of what Mayock and others report. Speaking of which... The CBS scouting profile is lukewarm. So is the NFL.com scouting profile, though the drawbacks it describes all fall in the category of "coachable problems if the student can learn." This goes to a mid-January scouting report, and this link goes to a second scouting report (comparing him to a raw Tamba Hali). The full Walter Football scouting profile cites league sources for its view that he is a mid- to late-1st Round talent.

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Demarcus Walker, Edge, Florida State - 6'4", 280 lbs. with 33" arms and 10-1/2" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Walker has sometimes flashed all-star talent, but usually in a more lineman-like way. He's probably a 4-3 guy and nothing else, but we will continue to hold out hope until we know for sure whether he can play in space as an OLB. The Combine didn't help since he didn't do any of the drills. This goes to a thoughtful New Years scouting report. This late December, gif-supported scouting report concludes with a Round 2-3 grade as a standup OLB, which would suit Pittsburgh well. This New Year scouting report considers Walker a fringe-1st prospect, but only as a 4-3 defensive end with the ability to drop down inside every once in a while. Here is a very useful, gif-heavy scouting report from our sister site for the Texans.

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Raekwon McMillan, ILB, Ohio State - 6'2", 240 lbs. with 33" arms and 9-3/4" hands. [Meeting at Visit] Darned near the physical prototype of what you look for in a Buck ILB with the possible exception of some suspicions about his sideline-to-sideline speed, McMillan also comes from the Steelers' favorite hunting ground. If Pittsburgh is looking for a physically superior athlete to compete with Vince Williams and Tyler Matakevich, this is the kid the F.O. will target. If he's fast enough to play the Mack, he'd be a great addition. Other than speed, there's the fact that ILB is not the biggest need on the team, and McMillan is probably too good to fall even as far as our Round 2 pick. Here are the CBS scouting profile and the NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to a useful December scouting report. Here is an April scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants.

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Anthony Walker Jr., ILB, Northwestern - 6'1", 238 lbs. with 30-3/8" arms and 9-1/2" hands. He did a good job covering Christian McCaffrey, so it's fair to say he's a true Mack ILB prospect. That's the one we have room for, even if (like Walker) they've shown some trouble getting off blocks. Note that reports say Walker lost half a step by gaining 10-15 lbs. for his 2016 season. This might be one of those prospects where a professional training program could really help by finding that physical sweet spot where he'd have all his quickness while still possessing the requisite pop for run support. This goes to one of those classic Sports Illustrated profiles and is a must-read if you want to know about the kid as well as his talents. This scouting profile barely deserves the name, but is too entertaining to just ignore. The NFL.com scouting profile compares him to Kiko Alonso, which might be fair if he gets his weight back down.

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John Johnson, S, Boston College - 6'0", 208 lbs. with 32" arms and 9-7/8" hands. Another all-round, athletic safety in the multipurpose Mitchell/Davis mold. The NFL.com scouting profile is a good place to start, and emphasizes his starting experience at both Corner and Safety (shades of Sean Davis). This one-gif February scouting report will fill in some gaps. Here are two intriguing catchphrases: "Safety body with Corner athleticism" and "Most of his issue center around his unwillingness to be the ‘alpha.'" This goes to a scouting profile from a Colts POV. Johnson had a great Senior Bowl as illustrated by this snippet in a Cowboys-oriented article: "At safety, it's John Johnson of Boston College, and then it's everyone else. Johnson glides when he's on the field. He's incredibly smooth in his back pedal and release." Here's a pair of scouting profiles from our sister site for the Rams and our sister site for the Giants ("elite centerfield range" and a comparison to Eric Weddle). Yet another hmmm.

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Desmond King, S/CB, Iowa - 5'10", 201 lbs. with 31-1/8" arms and 9-5/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] With shorthish 29-7/8" arms and 9-5/8" hands. Many of us have focused on the idea of a hybrid SS/LB who could serve as a puzzle piece to help Coach Butler fill in the gaps of his various Nickel packages. A hybrid Safety/Corner would serve much the same purpose, but from a coverage-first angle rather than a run-focused approach. Enter Desmond King (and Budda Baker and Chidobe Awuzie), a big hitting, quality-tackling slot corner whose lack of elite foot speed will limit his options on the outside. Per Mike Mayock: "Great ball skills... His home will be at Free Safety and Nickel." This goes to the CBS scouting profile, which deserves a quote: "an instinctive, passionate defender with the agility, ball skills and quickness to handle coverage duties in the NFL, as well as the physicality and open-field tackling skills necessary to hold up in run support... [but] a better football player than athlete [who] doesn't possess elite agility [and] doesn't possess the makeup speed to recover if he's beaten initially." That's it in a nutshell. The NFL.com scouting profile more or less agrees. This November scouting report from our sister site for the Eagles gives King an easy Round 1 grade due to system fit and need. Neither are quite as true for the Steelers. This January scouting profile is very similar - so much so that both authors ended up with a strong comparison to Antoine Winfield, the 3-time all-pro CB for the Bills and Vikings who had everything except supreme athletic talent. Here is the full length Walter Football scouting profile. This scouting profile emphasizes his "ball skills and scrappiness", en route to a fringe-2nd grade. This brief DraftWire article links King to [gasp!] that team in Baltimore. He's also been linked to that much more admirable team from Pittsburgh. And to the Cowboys; and to Da Bears; etc.

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Marcus Maye, S, Florida - 6'0", 210 lbs. with 32-1/2" arms and 9-1/8" hands. [Meeting at Pro Day] Maye would be getting more press if he hadn't lost the back end of his 2016 season to a broken arm. That sucks, but it's not a long term threat to his career like concussions or an ACL. And there is little doubt that Marcus Maye is going to have a long and productive career. The descriptions sound exactly like a younger version of Mike Mitchell; fast, rangy, good hands, loves to hit, able to play in center field or the box with equal facility, smart, occasionally flawed with his tackling angles... and capable of losing his cool enough to result in terrible, boneheaded penalties. This is an older but still useful scouting report from another Steelers site. The NFL.com scouting profile loves Maye's potential as a dual-purpose safety in the Mitchell/Davis type of mold. This goes to a nice scouting profile from our sister site for the Panthers, where the author argues for a Round 2 grade but the poll ends up with a public vote for Round 3. Here is a nice puff piece interview. This goes to a brief scouting profile from a Cowboys POV. Marcus Maye met with Kevin Colbert before his exceptional pro day and has been mentioned in various places as the true leader of a secondary that featured 2016 star draft picks like Vernon Hargreaves and Keanu Neal, and 2917 talents including Teez Tabor and Quincy Wilson. The PFF scouting profile particularly lauds his in-the-box talents. This is one of the most critical scouting profiles you'll find. Here is a short scouting profile that catches the overall opinion: a very talented box safety who is a bit weaker in coverage but has the natural talent to overcome that. This gif-supported scouting report ends with a Round 3 grade. This Buccaneers-oriented scouting profile is a bit more positive, ending with an enthusiastic Day-2-Bargain grade.

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Rasul Douglas, CB, West Virginia - 6'2", 209 lbs. with 32-3/8" arms and 9-1/4" hands. [Meeting at Visit] Compare the entry on Akhello Witherspoon. Both are corners with the much-coveted size to match up to Size XL receivers and receiving TE's. Is this what the Steelers need? Witherspoon has run support questions but is a much better athlete, while Douglas has good physicality but is plagued by C.O.D. issues that suggest potential problems covering quick and flashy guys with a lot of sudden change of direction. Beyond that it's a pick'em game. Take Witherspoon from a SPARQ rating equal to 92.6% of NFL Corners up to 99.3% and you get Kevin King (Douglas is at 30.9%) Here is a nice, gif-supported scouting report. There's a quote in this scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins that says it all: "stick him on Kelvin Benjamin, not Odell Beckham." This goes to a post-Combine, gif-supported scouting report that ends with a Round 3 grade. This is a brief scouting profile based on Tweets with a scout, but it seems pretty solid despite the Day 3 grade. This nice, gif-supported scouting report suggests that Douglas is a Day 2 value who may slip into Day 3. This scouting profile ends with an early-3rd grade. The PFF scouting profile makes a really good point: Douglas is built like a press Corner, but the West Virginia scheme gave him little or no chance to develop that skill. This brief scouting profile also ends with an early-3rd grade. Here is a long, Bills-oriented, gif-supported scouting report that gets into some real analysis and ends with a Round 2 grade. This Cardinals-oriented scouting profile notes that Douglas is both a good and aggressive tackler.

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Cameron Sutton, CB, Tennessee - 5'11", 188 lbs. with 30" arms and 8-1/4" hands. [Meeting at the Senior Bowl, Combine & Pro Day] He came into 2016 as a solid Day 2 prospect with the potential to claim a 1st Round slot. He ended 2016 as a solid Day 2 prospect. Take from that what you will. As expected, Sutton posted a good but not awesome Combine, continuing the "almost but not quite special" trend. Physically, Cam Sutton is a fine, fluid athlete with good technique and a mild aversion to run support that may be explained by his lack of imposing stature. He will be a very legitimate target for a Pittsburgh team with an opening for one more piece of prime young talent in the secondary - on Day 2, of course. His lack of length may push him down a bit. The CBS scouting profile is a fine place to start your research. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile, which makes Sutton sound like a slightly smaller and slightly faster version of Ross Cockrell. He had a great Senior Bowl, which led to this nice interview from our sister site for the Browns. This brief scouting profile extols his man coverage skills. The PFF scouting profile also describes Sutton as a sort of higher-pedigreed Ross Cockrell - a fine, heady, productive player who struggles in man coverage. Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Broncos.

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Quincy Wilson, CB, Florida - 6'1", 211 lbs. with 32-1/4" arms and 9-5/8" hands. Quincy Wilson is an interesting case. He's known as the guy who played across from Teez Tabor and might even be better - a description that built some irony when both young men had fairly miserable Combine performances. The pro day will matter. Quincy Wilson has great size, but as deftly summarized by the CBS scouting profile,"is more smooth than sudden and struggles to stick with wideouts at the top of routes, especially if he doesn't disrupt the route at the line of scrimmage". You'd think that would be a great recipe for playing Free Safety, but his tackling, while fine for a Corner, isn't up to Safety standards. He checks all the boxes other than sheer quickness and will likely go fairly high to a team interested in training up a press-man specialist. One other box is worth noting: his father is Chad Wilson, the former Miami CB, and the son is reportedly a technique junkie even though he's still learning his craft. So the NFL lifestyle won't be as big a shock to Quincy as it is for so many others. This optimistic scouting report is from one of the many that believes Wilson is has enough quickness to get by in the NFL, and therefore joins those others in giving him a very solid Round 1 grade. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets views Wilson as a Round 2 press-man specialist due to some stiffness and C.O.D. question marks that might limit him against really shifty route runners.

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Akhello Witherspoon, CB, Colorado - 6'3", 198 lbs. with 33" arms and 9-7/8" hands. Compare the entry on Rasul Douglas. Both are corners with the much-coveted size to match up to Size XL receivers and receiving TE's. Is this what the Steelers need? Witherspoon has run support questions but is a much better athlete, while Douglas has good physicality but is plagued by C.O.D. issues that suggest potential problems covering quick and flashy guys with a lot of sudden change of direction. Beyond that it's a pick'em game. Take Witherspoon from a SPARQ rating equal to 92.6% of NFL Corners up to 99.3% and you get Kevin King (Douglas is at 30.9%). This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile. Here is a BrownsWire scouting profile. This goes to a scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets.

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Evan Engram, TE, Ole Miss - 6'3", 234 lbs. with 33-1/2" arms and 10" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Engram and Gerald Everett are both overblown WR's more than classic TE's, but they are awfully good at the role and would qualify as significant new weapons for the Steeler offense even if Ladarius Green can stay healthy. The difference (other than level of competition): Everett ran a nice enough 4.62 at the Combine, while Engram dropped jaws with an astonishing time of 4.42. He would have been the 5th-fastest WR! Mike Mayock and Daniel Jeremiah were touting Engram big-time at the Senior Bowl, making comparisons to Jordan Reed, who is a little shorter at 6'2" but a bit stockier at 246 lbs. In the Combine coverage they emphasized that Engram gives "great effort" as a blocker, is "always competitive" and is "able to sustain his blocks." Maybe not so one-dimensional after all. It might be better to consider him as the best H-back prospect in many years (a hybrid TE/FB) rather than a standard Tight End, but his utility as an offensive weapon is too clear to ignore. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile. This scouting profile captures the general opinion in a nutshell, as does this late January scouting profile that ends with a late-2nd grade. This December scouting profile also gives a Round 2 grade, ending with two other common comparisons: Aaron Hernandez (without the criminality) and Devin Funchess. Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Falcons. This goes to a nice, thorough, gif-supported scouting profile from Sports Illustrated. Here's a briefer summary from Sports Illustrated. Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Broncos. The PFF scouting profile notes some areas that can be improved, including his release off the line and a lamentable number of concentration drops. Here is a nice, solid scouting profile that seems to catch the essence of the consensus view. These go to a summary scouting profile from a Jets site. Here is a brief scouting profile from Baltimore Beatdown and a slightly longer scouting profile from Hogs Haven.

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Jordan Leggett, TE, Clemson - 6'5", 255 lbs. [Meeting at the Combine] The quarterback's best friend and essential safety blanket on the FCS 2016 champion. He was instrumental in winning that game, with a series of tough catches that got the team rolling. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile. Leggett has experience with every aspect of the TE game, which is a major plus from a Pittsburgh point of view. The question marks go to his motor and intensity. If he'd played as hard all the time as he did in the clutch moments, he would probably be hoping for a Round 1 grade instead of the fringe-2nd he currently gets. Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets along with late March ones from our sister site for the Redskins and our sister site for the Giants. Here is a nice, if brief, video scouting report. This goes to a gif-supported scouting report from out sister site for the Patriots. Here is a fine, gif-supported scouting report from BillsWire. The PFF scouting profile emphasizes Leggett's extensive experience compared to most other college TE's.

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Devonte Fields, Edge, Louisville - 6'2", 236 lbs. with 32-3/8" arms and 9" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Devonte Fields reminds me Martavis Bryant as a prospect. He has that same kind of astonishing athletic skill and flashes of genius, combined with so much off field smoke that it makes you pause. Round 1 talent below the neck, UDFA above it. But when he's on... wow. The NFL.com scouting report lays the pluses and minuses out very nicely, concluding that the physical talents are all there but the amount of "football character" may not be, and without that his prospects would be very grim indeed. The CBS scouting report is a bit less clear, but seems to be hitting the same points: the physical talent is there, but that doesn't mean he will live up to his athletic potential.

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Carroll Phillips, Edge, Illinois - 6'3", 242 lbs. with 33-3/4" arms and 9-3/4" hands. [Meeting at Visit] Dawuane Smoot's running mate at Illinois, Phillips is a good bit smaller and maybe even a little quicker. His NFL.com scouting profile is currently somewhat sparse. He's from Miami and this nice article from a local paper includes both background and speculation on his fit with the Dolphins. This goes to a brief article on his solid Combine performance. This solid scouting profile/article includes a Mike Mayock estimate putting Phillips in the early Day 3 range.

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Tim Williams, Edge, Alabama - 6'4", 244 lbs. with 32-3/4" arms and 9-1/4" hands.[Meeting at the Combine & Visit] He came into the process with a reptuation for being a really great edge rusher with all the speed and dip around the edge you could want. Closer study led to some questions. Then came the swirling rumors about potential problems with the Evil Weed and the ever more common analogies to Randy Gregory. Then he looked decidedly average at the Combine, with mediocre scores across the board. Some guys just have a Steelerish vibe to them. Tim Williams does not, at least when it comes to what's reported for people like you and us. Here is a gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Packers.

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Jalen Reeves-Maybin, ILB/SS, Tennessee - 6'0", 230 lbs. with 32-1/4" arms and 9-5/8 hands. A true hybrid who leans slightly more ILB than Safety. There is an injury concern due to a banged up shoulder he suffered in September of 2016, but judging that is beyond our expertise here. Here are the CBS scouting profile and he NFL.com scouting profile. Here is the PFF scouting profile. This article notes at least one exec with injury concerns about his old shoulder problem. Here is a set of video clips on Reeves-Maybin's pro day. This Jets-oriented scouting profile concludes with a Day 2 grade much like ours. This Cowboys-oriented scouting profile is similarly positive.

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Shaquill Griffin, CB, UCF - 6'0", 194 lbs. with 32-3/8" arms and 8-3/4" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Shaquill Griffin was another player who surged onto the scene with an astonishing Combine performance. His featured a blazing 4.38 dash, and top performances in the vertical jump, broad jump, and long shuttle. Bottom line: this is an explosive athlete with enough change of direction to earn an "I really like his feet" comment from Deion Sanders. He left a strong impression of being good at everything and great at a few things, which is exactly what you'd want. The NFL.com scouting profile adds that he possesses plus ball skills, is a more than willing tackler, and thus would particularly suit a cover-2 scheme of the type Mike Tomlin favors. The only worry Zierlein had was "very average long speed," which has now been shot down by the measurements. Anyone who wonders how a physical talent like this ended up at a (relatively) small football school should read this article about Shaquill Griffin and his brother Shaquem. This article as well. The "M" twin, who plays linebacker, was born with a defect that required amputation of one hand. The "L" twin we're looking at refused to go anywhere that wouldn't take them as a package deal. [Sighs happily]. This goes to a nice PFF scouting profile that's worth the read.  This particularly fun article is found at NFL.com. The more you read, the more you root for him.

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Damontae Kazee, CB, San Diego St. - 5'10", 184 lbs. with 30-7/8" arms and 8-5/8" hands. Quoting Mike Mayock, "I love this kid like I love Awuzie... [He is] quicker than fast... Played off coverage his entire career, then showed up at the Senior Bowl and played great press. Ball skills all day long." Daniel Jeremiah agrees: "Someone is going to get great value." Bottom line: This draft features a number of natural Nickel CB's who possess superb quickness and tough minded tackling ability, but are either a bit undersized or a half step too slow to be put on the outside against the Martavis Bryant types. Senquez Golson was as good as any of them in college, but who can trust that Year 3 is the one where he'll manage to stay healthy? Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets ends with a Round 4 grade because he projects as a good role player and not a #1. This Patriots-oriented scouting profile ends on a fringe-3rd grade, and this more neutral scouting profile with a solid-3rd grade. Here is a solid scouting profile from CBS.

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Jourdan Lewis, CB, Michigan - 5'10", 188 lbs. with short 31-5/8" arms and 9-1/4" hands. [Meeting at Visit] Jourdan Lewis, like Senquez Golson two years ago, is a 1st-round cover corner in a body small enough to drop his likely draft position down to Round 2. He has literally everything you want other than size, including a seriously scrappy attitude ("Lewis is a flat-out competitor and will give receivers hell all game"). Mike Mayock had this to say: "A really, really good football player... Not the fastest DB on the field [but] I like him as a starting Nickel Day 1 in the NFL." This December scouting report sums the assets up nicely: "Perhaps no corner in the country has the ability to mirror receivers the way Lewis can... Lewis may have the quickest and most disciplined footwork of anyone in this class. He changes directions and explodes out of his breaks. Because of this, he may be the best player in the country playing inside against the slot." If there really are doubts about Senquez Golson's ability to play in 2017, Jourdan Lewis would be an ideal replacement. As summarized in this December scouting report, Lewis has a physical style of play and enjoys press coverage despite his size. There are some technical issues to fix, like the tendency toward grabbiness noted in this scouting report. This January scouting report from CBS agrees with all that, as does this January scouting report from a Titans site. There has been a minor DV foofaraw during the draft process. This grade assumes there's nothing to it.

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Marquez White, CB, Florida St. - 6'0", 194 lbs. with long 32-1/8" arms and 10" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] According to Mike Mayock during the Combine coverage, Marquez White is "A basketball player with really good movement skills... [He] could have a little more interest in the run game but he's gifted with feet and hips." The feet were easy to see - your classic hot potato quickness. He ran a slowish 4.59 but plays faster than that. The NFL.com scouting profile does not agree with Mayock's assessment, panning White for "obvious balance issues" (that others apparently miss). The stats are very much in his favor. At one point last year he'd only given up 0.33 yards per coverage snap! In a similar vein, this well written CBS article points out that White has been an invisible man because other teams avoid him. This very admiring scouting profile gives the conclusion every draftnik wants to hear the most: "Due to the overstocked nature of this draft class, the odds are White won't go until later on Day 2. Any normal year he'd be in the conversation for the 1st round. As it stands he'll be a quality find for a team at a bargain price who can probably start for them right away. Coaching will become key to him unlocking his full potential." That's a little out there! This mini-profile from Cleveland ends with a Day 3 grade. This goes to a recent scouting profile/interview. Here is a January video interview. Here is a short but good article on White's friendship with NFL Corner Ronald Darby. If you want a peek inside the young man, here is a video on his charity camp for kids.

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Howard Wilson, CB, Houston - 6'1", 184 lbs. with 31-3/8" arms and 9-5/8" hands. Scratch a serious 2017 draftnik and he'll lean in to tell you a secret: "My favorite sleeper DB is a kid named Howard Wilson out of Houston..." Seriously. It's almost funny how many people think this young man isn't getting the buzz he deserves. Mike Mayock describes Howard Wilson as a "REALLY good football player [with] really good ball skills... very good feet and change of direction, and a good feel for the game too." The NFL.com scouting profile suggests that his issues come down to lack of experience and he might have hoped to be a 1st Rounder if he'd waited until 2018 before coming out. The Combine hurt his public image a bit due to some mediocre testing like a very pedestrian 4.57 dash, but it should be noted that he did put up top numbers in the agility drills like the 3-cone and short shuttle. He also looked a little clutzy in the football drills but the tape belies that. This scouting profile worries that his frankly-skinny frame and questionable long speed will limit him to being an excellent zone corner. This goes to a video interview at the Combine.

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Joe Mixon, RB, Oklahoma - 6'1", 227 lbs. [Meeting at Pro Day] Maybe the best running back in the draft on talent alone (a conclusion based on film and confirmed by his pro day testing), Mixon has a huge red flag for an incident when he was 18 and punched a girl in the face after getting slapped. He made the particular mistake of doing this on film, which made it a public scandal. BTSC has discussed this matter in great detail, as have other sites like this more lighthearted approach. Here is a Sports Ilustrated article on point as well. This grade is based primarily on his Round 1 talent, discounted by a huge amount because he would be mainly a backup Lev Bell (who is actually the most common NFL comparison and the one used in the NFL scouting profile). Mixon really does have that much talent as both a runner and receiver. Here is an interesting scouting profile knocking Mixon for his "arrogance on the field" and seeing that as being somehow connected to the off-field stuff. Here is a nice play-by-play scouting report. Another solid scouting profile with a Lev Bell comparison. A 4 minute video scouting profile. Here is a 5 minute Matt Waldman video studying his footwork alone.

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Isaiah "Zay" Jones, WR, East Carolina - 6'2", 201 lbs. with 32-1/2" arms and 9" hands. Zay Jones is the son of former LB Robert Jones and the nephew of former QB Jeff Blake, but he flashed onto the national draft radar all by himself with a sensational week of Senior Bowl practices, an even better game, and a Combine that put him in the top 5% of all WR's in the NFL for SPARQ score. This exceptional and quite long DraftWire article digs deep into Jones' background and should be a must-read if you want to really understand the prospect. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile, which should probably be rewritten in light of that performance. This early January scouting profile compares Jones to Manny Sanders. This post-Senior Bowl scouting profile loves the player but worries about whether he has NFL speed. This gif-supported scouting report uses Keenan Allen as the comparable, and also lists speed as the main concern. This goes to a very positive scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets. This goes to a fun Senior Bowl article from a local paper on why Zay Jones is such a big draft crush for many scouts. For a more critical view, see this gif-supported scouting report which ends with a 6th Round grade. Here are the Walter Football WR summaries. This goes to an early April scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants. This set of WR scouting profiles from our sister site for the Rams includes one on Zay Jones.

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Curtis Samuel, WR/RB, Ohio State - 5'11", 196 lbs. With 31-1/4" arms and 9-½" hands. Curtis Samuel was used all over the field by Ohio State because he is an amazing playmaker in space. And fast - a 4.31 at the Combine. Alas, he seems to be more a slot receiver than a RB, and thus less desirable to a Steeler team that's well stocked at that position. (For earlier hopes see this December gif-supported scouting report considering him as a RB, this more recent scouting profile viewing him as a dual-purpose offensive coordinator's toy, and this 4-minute video scouting report from Matt Waldman, who views him as a scat back with the ability to play WR). Here is the NFL.com scouting profile, which mentions that some scouts consider him a more "linear" athlete than most people describe. The most common comparison is the one at Walter Football: Percy Harvin. This Fox Sports scouting profile agrees: Percy Harvin. This goes to a 4 minute video scouting report. The general run of comments makes a very clear picture: an all-purpose offensive weapon, but too small to hold up at RB; a mismatch nightmare who needs the right scheme to be successful; etc.

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John "JuJu" Smith-Schuster, WR, USC - 6'1", 2215 lbs. with 32-7/8" arms and 10-1/2" hands. A classic, hard working, hard hitting, big, physical, possession receiver. JuJu's got everything you want in a receiver with the exception of extra-gear speed and super-quick breaks. The NFL.com scouting profile compares him to Anquan Boldin and it's easy to see why. Great hands; great body control; great blocking; but not a field stretcher. "A big, physical tone-setter on the perimeter" according to the CBS scouting profile. This scouting profile from our sister site for USC agrees: Anquan Boldin, and projects him as a future Raven. Heck, this scouting profile from Baltimore Beatdown agrees on both counts. This excellent, gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Eagles sets a Round 1 grade and a comparison to Justin Blackmon. Here is a gif-supported scouting report from BillsWire. This January scouting profile ends with a Round 1 grade. This scouting profile compares him to Malcolm Floyd. This February scouting profile contains a lot of quotes from elsewhere, and gives a nice overview. Here are the Walter Football WR summaries. This set of WR scouting profiles from our sister site for the Rams includes one on Smith-Schuster.

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Ryan Anderson, Edge, Alabama - 6'2", 253 lbs. with short 31-1/2" arms and 9-3/8" hands [Meeting at the Combine] A really solid "other guy," but not the one who will force opposing offensive coordinators to game plan around his threat. Very high floor, but the ceiling isn't that far above it. Anderson is a very good but not great pass rusher, an excellent run defender, a team leader, and all those other good things, but he also suffers from the "Alabama Problem" of having such great coaching and so many stars around him that it raises questions about whether he'll improve as much as other college players might. Really bad at flattening the arc, which is a major flaw in someone expected to be a pass rusher. His very short arms and seriously awful 40 time support a lower grade too, though he's expected to do a bit better on the SPARQ type tests when he performs at the Alabama pro day. The NFL.com scouting profile is a great place to start if you want to do more research.

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Daeshon Hall, Edge/DL, Texas A&M - 6'5", 265 lbs. with absolutely absurd 35-5/8" arms and 9-5/8" hands. People sometimes like to talk about the "elephant OLB" who's sort of a hybrid between a 3-4 defensive end and a 3-4 OLB. This year's prototype for that position is Daeshon Hall, who needs a huge amount of coaching but seems to have exactly the right kind of physical talents to walk that line. Hall was overshadowed by his running mate, Myles Garrett, but he is a force in his own right too: a 4-3 Defensive end that's big enough to work in a 3-4. Memories of Ziggy Hood spring to mind, when thinking of an athletic, pass-rushing, DE plugged into the Steeler's defense. Hall is a tenacious pass rusher, able to split two blockers using his size, strength and athletic ability. Consistency is an issue as his stellar 2015 season was tempered with a disappointing 2016 run. The question is whether the Steelers would want a player of that description. The odds favor more of a true, Edge-rushing OLB. Mike Mayock called him an "underrated player [who] sets a great edge... Not as gifted as some, but a good player you can't ignore." This goes to an informative NFL.com scouting profile. This gif-supported scouting report ends with a Round 2-3 grade. This very brief scouting profile had him as an early-2nd back in February. Here is a combination article/interview with a local newspaper. Here is a late March scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins. Hall reportedly looked very good at his pro day in the pass rushing drills but not in the linebacker ones.

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Duke Riley, ILB, LSU - 6'0", 232 lbs. with 32-7/8" arms and 9-3/4" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] A solid prospect to be a backup Mack ILB for Shazier. Caught everyone's attention at the Combine with best of show scores in the 40, the short shuttle, and the long shuttle. Also moved well in the drills. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to a really good, gif-supported scouting profile from BillsWire. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants describes him as a "New Age LB" in the same mold as Shazier - undersized but really fast.

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Jonathan "Rudy" Ford, S/CB, Auburn - 5'11", 205 lbs. with 30" arms and 8-7/8" hands. [Meeting at Pro Day] A good, versatile, fluid athlete with potential as both a Corner and a Free Safety; i.e., exactly the sort of hybrid guy who could perfect coverage-oriented Nickel and Dime packages. He has the right size and athleticism to make the leap but there are questions about his tackling and awareness with the ball in the air. He started his college career as a RB and should have plenty of room to go. Here is a CBS article on him. Ran a 4.34 at his pro day so speed will not be a problem. He met with Mike Tomlin at the pro day too.

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Fish Smithson, S, Kansas - 6'1", 210 lbs. Great size with a reputation for excelling even more in coverage. Some sites have him going as early as Round 2. His NFL.com scouting profile cites concerns about his tackling as a factor that could potentially keep him from rising up the draft board. Here is a brief profile from a Cowboys POV.

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Tedric Thompson, S, Colorado - 6'0", 204 lbs. with 31-1/2" arms and 9-5/8" hands. A multipurpose safety with good coverage skills and excellent ballhawking powers (7 interceptions as a senior). Mike Mayock called him a "pure center fielder" who needs to become a better and more physical tackler (not that he's bad, just in need of improvement). Here is his NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to a nice January scouting profile that ends with a fringe-3rd grade. This gif-supported scouting report from BillsWire agrees completely: a fine center fielder who needs to work on his physicality and tackling, with a Round 3 grade. This goes to a biased but still nice scouting profile from a local source in Denver.

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Corn Elder, CB, Miami - 5'10", 183 lbs. with 31-1/4" arms and 8-3/4" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] In the words of Mike Mayock, Corn Elder is "A tough kid [who is] a Nickel all day long [and] lights people up... He's a football player at the end of the day." That pretty much summarizes everything you will read about him. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile which explains that Elder is a former basketball star (and RB) with great quickness and "twitchy click-and-close to the ball." The issue comes down to size and size alone. This goes to a March scouting profile comparing him to Buster Skrine. This is a fun scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins. This goes to a telephone interview. Here is a combination interview/scouting profile from a Packers POV. The PFF scouting profile emphasizes that Elder is an "outstanding tackler", which is perfect for the Nickel DB role he'd play in Pittsburgh. This gif-supported scouting report comes from a self-professed fan, but is quite fair in it's conclusion that Elder has excelled in zone coverage while possessing almost zero experience playing man. This gif-supported, Miami-oriented scouting report cuts to the chase: "Corn Elder is the next Brent Grimes."

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Gerald Everett, TE, S. Alabama - 6'3", 239 lbs. with 33" arms and small 8-1/2" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Everett and Evan Engram are both H-backs more than classic TE's (hybrid WR/TE/FB), but they are awfully good at the role and would qualify as significant new weapons for the Steeler offense even if Ladarius Green can stay healthy. Everett is the less athletic of the two and faced a lower level of competition, but was nevertheless touted by Mike Mayock for his "commitment to blocking" as well as his very natural hands despite their size. He tested exceptionally well at the Combine in several areas. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile. This excellent gif-supported scouting report shows Everett's utility as a vertical threat as well as a possession receiver who regularly wins the contested catches, and agrees that he is a willing if as-yet-unskilled blocker. This goes to a nice interview with our sister site for the Giants. This full scouting report from Walter Football ends with a comparison to Jordan Reed and an observation that he'd fit perfectly in Pittsburgh. This brief but solid scouting profile ends with a Round 3 grade comparable to most others. This scouting profile focuses on the issues but still ends with a Round 2-3 grade. Here is a video interview at the Senior Bowl. Here is a nice 3-4 minute video scouting report. The PFF scouting profile compares Everett to Antonio Gates(!), and emphasizes how hard he is to bring down once he has the ball. This goes to a Packers-oriented scouting profile and this to a video "primer" at Packers.com. Here is a nice scouting profile from NinersWire.

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George Kittle, TE, Iowa - 6'4", 247 lbs. with long 33-1/8" arms and 9-1/4" hands. Before the Combine George Kittle had earned Mike Mayock's award as the "best blocker in the class." But that is all people thought he was. Enter the testing: a great 11' broad jump that set the record for TE's until Bucky Hodges broke it a few minutes later, plus a 4.52 dash better than every TE except Evan Engram. Then Mayock added this: "He was hurt this year. I don't think we got to see the true George Kittle." Veeeery interesting... There's also the fact that Iowa is a strictly run-first team, so his receiving skills might have been hidden anyway. He's certainly got decent hands! Could we have a draft steal in the making? It sounds almost likely. In fact... Go and read this highly intriguing statistical analysis of this year's TE's. No one looks better than Kittle at the end. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile, which criticizes his blocking - the one thing everyone else loved! Here's a good scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets. This goes to his interview at the Combine. Here is a long article with lots of background on his position in the long succession of Iowa TE's. This goes to the easy best of the pre-Combine scouting profiles. Here is a solid post-Combine scouting profile from PFF.

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Adam Shaheen, TE, Ashland - 6'6", 278 lbs. with 33-1/2" arms and 9-5/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] A former basketball player, yes, but more like a center than a power forward. Shaheen is a massive young man who produced (especially in the red zone) in his short football career, but that career was against other tiny schools and it is hard to judge how far the physical assets will take him in the NFL. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to a fun but gushing scouting profile that focuses on Shaheen's record setting but D-II history in college. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets and this scouting profile from a New England site should be read together. They both compare Shaheen to a poor man's Rob Gronkowski before ending with an upbeat but Day 3 grade because the level of competition was so much lower. After the Steeler experience with Javon Hargrave, who looked like a D-line version of Shaheen (a man among boys), we are a bit more optimistic about his value in late Day 2. Film watchers will note that a man that size can definitely learn to block better. He should be dominant, instead he's been more of a "get in the way and stay there" type. Here are a trio of scouting reports from our sister sites for the Packers, for the Broncos, and for the Giants. This scouting profile gives the more cautious view, and emphasizes the huge leap in play speed Shaheen will encounter at the next level. This goes to a Chiefs-oriented scouting profile. This article reports on the Steelers interest in the young Tight End. YouTube offers both this 4-minute video scouting report and this 3-minute video scouting report, along with this 12-minute clip of Shaheen's Combine press conference. This brief but decent scouting profile notes that Shaheen's blocking is very much a work in progress despite the tremendous size. This goes to a fun background-oriented article from Cleveland.com, which pairs very well with this exceptionally long and thorough article from Bleacher Report. Here is a Jets-oriented scouting profile.

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Jeremy Sprinkle, TE, Arkansas - 6'5", 252 lbs. with exceptional 34-1/2" arms and massive 10-3/4" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] One of the best run blockers in the class with room to get better, and not terrible as a receiver either. The only reason he isn't ranked as an early Round 2 talent is one of the stupidest off-field kerfuffles you'll ever hear about. Right before this year's bowl game he was arrested for shoplifting! How dumb can you be? There's obviously some kind of story behind this that we will never know, but you can bet the teams will spend a long time digging into it. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to an older (December) but still solid gif-supported scouting report. This more recent Carolina-oriented scouting profile ends with a comparison to Martellus Bennett. Sprinkle's pro day performance confirms that he has excellent SPARQ score athleticism. This goes to a 15-minute Matt Waldman video scouting report. The PFF scouting profile emphasizes Sprinkle's need to continue working on his blocking skills, both run and pass, despite his reputation for excelling in that area. Here is a Giants-oriented scouting profile.

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D'Onta Foreman, RB, Texas - 6' 0", 233 lbs. with 31-3/8" arms and 10-1/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Probably the best power back in the draft, with enough speed and shiftiness to run for over 2000 yards in 2016. He is particularly good at finding cracks in short yardage and goal line situations. Foreman met with the Steelers at the Combine, and therefore deserves some extra study from us. Pass protection is cited as a weakness in his NFL.com scouting profile, a knock that this long, gif-supported scouting report agrees with. This scouting profile takes a completely opposite view, calling him the best blocker in the draft, and PFF did a study showing that he gave up zero sacks. Go figure. This excellent, gif-heavy scouting report emphasizes Foreman's power game ("an eighteen wheeler"), but notes some fumbling issues that others do too. This scouting profile agrees with most others that he is a 2nd Round value. This Panthers-oriented scouting profile compares Foreman to Jonathan Stewart, unfortunately including a bit of the injury bug. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants puts his value in the 2-4 range, dependent largely on how he tests. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets ends with a Round 2 grade as a pure two-down player; which says something about how good he is for those two downs. These links go to a 4-minute video scouting report, a 5-minute scouting report, and a 13-minute video scouting report. This scouting profile joins others in making a comparison to Legarrette Blount's running style. This scouting profile prefers a comparison to Eddie Lacey.

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Samaje Perine, RB, Oklahoma - 5' 11", 233 lbs. with 30-3/8" arms and 10" hands. A tough, very strong, downhill bowling ball who gets the extra yard every time, while also having some nifty jump-cut elusiveness and more speed than you'd think. If he hadn't been hidden behind an all-world talent in Joe Mixon, Perine would probably rank a lot higher in the public mind. He gets a discount on this Board because he'd only get the chance when Lev Bell wasn't available to do so, but he'd be great in that backup and/or closer capacity and it may not hurt that he's used to being the #2 guy. A team captain and great locker room guy Mike Mayock describes as "underrated." Playing behind Mixon, Perine set the all-time Oklahoma rushing record and also owns the record for the greatest single rushing performance in college history (427 yards!). This goes to an excellent, gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Eagles (including this link to an article on his fabulous work ethic and team dedication), which concludes with a Top 50 grade and a strong comparison to Maurice Jones-Drew. But don't get too excited just yet. This goes to a much more critical scouting profile that ends with a Round 5 grade based on a lack of elusiveness, which is not what I just saw in those gifs. This scouting profile is a bit less critical, but still ends in a Round 4 grade. But that is countered by this gif-supported scouting report ends with a Round 2-3 grade and a comparison to Spencer Ware. Get the idea? Perine's stock varies a lot in the eye of the beholder. Here's another extremely positive scouting profile (Round 2 grade, especially if he drops some weight). This goes to one of the epic length Matt Waldman video scouting reports, which concludes by emphasizing the weight issue and suggesting that a Samaje Perine who drops some pounds could experience a Bell-like change in his quickness. Which would be Wow! Here is a Vikings-oriented scouting profile.

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Isaiah Ford, WR, Va. Tech - 6'1", 194 lbs. with 32-5/8" arms and 9-1/4" hands. A very sudden athlete with top-notch speed and quickness, but a lack of technique that's prevented him from being the complete weapon that he could be. Route running in particular needs work. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. Here are the Walter Football WR summaries.

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Chris Godwin, WR, Penn St. - 6'1", 209 lbs. with 31-5/8" arms and 9-1/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine and Visit] Chris Godwin was known as a physical receiver who excelled at making contested catches, but suffered from the occasion "Doh!" moment where he'd forget to finish the easy ones. A good, solid, large possession receiver with very natural hands. Until the Combine, where he blew away the field with a 4.43 dash and other scores that would put him in the to 10% of all NFL WR's. That will get some attention! Here is the NFL.com scouting profile, which seems quite unfinished. This goes to a FoxSports scouting report; this to a Buccaneers site scouting report, and this to a nice January scouting profile. Here is an excellent post-Combine scouting profile from our sister site for the Rams. This 8-minute Matt Waldman video scouting report may have been written in February but predicted some of the Combine results by calling Godwin "sneaky good." This goes to a scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets. This goes to a long, gif-supported scouting report from Cincy Jungle that ends with a Round 2 grade. Here is the PFF scouting profile which, among other things, notes Godwin's superior ability to block from he WR position. This nice Tampa-oriented scouting profile ends with a grade we can agree on: "Round 3 with tremendous upside." This fine, gif-dense scouting report from BillsWire agrees: Day 2 all the way. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants catches something right in a different way: Godwin is at the top of the list for "sneaky good and underrated receivers," of whom there are many in this class. This set of WR scouting profiles from our sister site for the Rams includes one on Godwin.

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Cooper Kupp, WR, Eastern Wash. - 6'2", 204 lbs. with 31-1/2" arms and 9-1/2" hands. Dominated the small school circuit as a WR even more thoroughly than Hargrave did as a defensive lineman. The production is literally off the charts, and by every account he is the perfect interview: a film junkie student of the game with a totally professional attitude and a genuine sense of perspective on life in general. Legendary for his hands, with excellent height and speed, but apparently some quibbles about his quickness and measured decidedly average on the SPARQ score athletic profile. A bit hard to judge because he was a man among boys, but he was almost an uncoverable force of nature at the Senior Bowl practices. The questions go to how much he will suffer from the leap to NFL DB's, and how soon he will overcome those restraints. Father was an NFL quarterback, and grandfather was a HOF offensive lineman, so he should adjust well from that angle. It's a bit of a stretch, but Kupp gives off a vibe similar to what I got from Jordan Matthews which is the same conclusion our sister site bleedinggreennation seems to have come to. A pro's pro in the making, limited only by being a "merely fantastic" athlete. Steve Smith agreed. At the Combine coverage he was emphatic: "Cooper Kupp is my guy." Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. Here are the Walter Football WR summaries. This set of WR scouting profiles from our sister site for the Rams includes one on Cooper Kupp.

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Chris Wormley, DL, Michigan - 6'5", 297 lbs. with 33-1/2" arms and big 10-3/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Wormley looks like a fine prospect to play the 3/4/5 technique role the Steelers envision for their DE's. Great football IQ and locker room presence too, by all accounts. He's a player with lots to like. But with Heyward and Tuitt entrenched as the starters and good depth behind them, there is really no spot for him to fill. His grade would be three rounds higher if the team had actual need at his position. He'd be on the Ain't Gonna Happen List if the team hadn't met with him at the Combine. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to a good scouting profile at Walter Football. Here is a scouting profile from a New England perspective. This Cowboys oriented, gif-supported scouting report pairs with this version by the same author. This Redskins oriented scouting profile actually considers Wormley a viable Round 1 talent to replace Ziggy Hood! The Ziggy comparison may be apt now that I think about it. Wormley showed well at the Senior Bowl too. Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins.

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Trey Hendrickson, Edge, Fla. Atlantic - 6'4", 266 lbs. with 32" arms and 9-7/8" hands. Per Mike Mayock: "The runaway winner of Player of the Week at the East/West Shrine Game... I think he's a Top 100 player even in this draft." The NFL.com scouting profile adjusted itself to include that performance: "More of a second-effort sack man than a quick-win specialist, but he did show some edge rushing ability at the Shrine Game practices that didn't flash as often on tape." This goes to his Shrine Game interview. Here is a February scouting profile that agrees with the "underrated" and "Round 3" conclusions.

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Alex Anzalone, ILB, Florida - 6'3", 241 lbs. with 32-1/8" arms and 9-1/8" hands. Anzalone is a tremendously gifted athlete with enough potential to earn a spot as Mike Mayock's #5 ILB. "Durability is his issue, not athleticism." He'd make a tremendous backup for Ryan Shazier but for the reality that he's spent more time in the tub than helping his club. Shoulder problems have particularly plagued him, all the way back to High School. Last year it was a broken arm. This Patriots oriented scouting profile is a good place to start, along with the NFL.com scouting profile. Both emphasize his all-purpose ability to run, cover, and tackle... if he could only stay on the field. This is a good article for background. These links go to a three-part interview with a Florida fan site (Part #1, Part #2, Part #3). Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins.

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Josh Harvey-Clemons, S/LB, Louisville - 6'4", 217 lbs. with 35-3/8" arms and 10-3/8" hands. A Safety with the size of a fairly big linebacker? Seriously? Yep. The NFL.com scouting profile considers him to be almost ideal for the modern hybrid role if he can get good coaching to instill a better understanding of his specific jobs on defense. The biggest red flag are several failed marijuana tests, which forced him to leave the Georgia program and follow his coach to Louisville. After Martavis Bryant's adventures you can expect the Steelers to be somewhat gun shy about that problem. This more critical February scouting report emphasizes that Harvey-Clemons often looks a bit lost, which makes him a tweener who excels as neither a box safety nor a linebacker. It ends with a Round 4 grade based on potential. Here is a briefer scouting profile from a Cowboys perspective.

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Josh Dobbs, QB, Tennessee - 6'3", 216 lbs. with 32-5/8" arms and 9-1/4" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Above all, Josh Dobbs is a young man whose charisma and humanity seem to leap off every page you read about him. If we were trying to predict life success instead of football, he'd be way up toward the top of the 1st. Football-wise, Mike Mayock says that Dobbs has the arm required of an NFL quarterback, and he can certainly make plays with his feet, but is far too inconsistent to count on in the near future. The bottom line is that Mayock puts Dobbs in the mid-rounds bracket with Brad Kaaya, Davis Webb, and Nate Peterman. Everyone agrees that Dobbs gets points for being a fine leader and a really smart young man (aerospace engineer), both of which matter a lot at the QB position. YMMV, but he also managed to outplay prospect Nate Peterman, who was forced into a transfer to Pitt in order to see the field. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. This DraftWire scouting profile is both helpful and a really good read, though the analogies to Dak Prescott get a bit strained. It isn't alone, though. This January article also sees some viable Prescott comparisons. The CBS scouting profile isn't as positive: "The lack of consistency will likely keep him from being anything more than a developmental option in the NFL, but his intangibles and physical traits will appeal to some NFL teams." This goes to a really good, if brief, article discussing Dobbs' development as a QB. Here's a 3-minute video scouting report. Dobbs has had an excellent Combine and pre-draft process. This goes to a video featuring Josh Dobbs on a Packers site. This goes to a 2-minute video where Dobbs breaks down the Senior Bowl game. This article speculates on Dobbs' suitability for the Browns, while this article examines his fit as a backup for the Panthers. This is a particularly interesting article explaining why many people have come to see Dobbs as the best Sleeper QB of the class.

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Brad Kaaya, QB, Miami - 6'4", 214 lbs. with 32" arms and 9-3/4" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Prototypical QB size, prolific college stats, but the tape tells a tale here. Draft analysts predict that QBs will be over-drafted yet again, which could serve to give Kaaya a better projected spot. While many praise his deep ball and how quickly he gets the ball out, his negatives paint a fuller picture. His tendency to throw too much air on his passes have people questioning his arm strength, and his struggles under pressure might allude to his quickness in getting the ball out of his hands. Middle of the road pocket presence makes this guy a reach for anyone wanting to risk a draft pick on him. Here is a BTSC scouting profile. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Cardinals emphasizes a high floor due to Kaaya's football IQ, and compares him to Cody Kessler. This superior, gif-supported scouting report from BillsWire gets into some nitty gritty, and ends with comparisons to Kirk Cousins and Teddy Bridgewater. Sensing a theme? Kaaya gives off the vibe of being a QB that fans will loyally defend, but outsiders will view as a viable but not exciting NFL starter. Is that what Pittsburgh should draft? Here is a high quality, detail oriented scouting profile from Walter Football that gets into specific arguments (his production died when his main assets got drafted), assets (he can do the job physically), and problems (he feels pressure more than you'd like, and there are questions about his leadership skills). The pro comp here is Blaine Gabbert. This briefer scouting profile also criticizes Kaaya for "ineptitude under pressure." The PFF scouting profile puts numbers to that: "Passer rating of 113.0 from a clean pocket [and] 59.2 under pressure," which is a significantly bigger than average disparity (i.e., everyone's passer rating goes down under pressure, but his goes down by much more than his peers). This Chiefs-oriented scouting profile notes that Kaaya had a fabulous Combine, with footwork and other mechanics that looked much better than he'd shown in college. It would seem he's coachable... This Bears-oriented scouting profile views Kaaya as a classic high-floor, moderate-ceiling prospect. And if you want to really dig deep, here is a 41 minute Matt Waldman epic. Waldman's usually pretty good at getting the points across, but it can be a slog.

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Nathan Peterman, QB, Pitt - 6'2", 226 lbs. with 32" arms and 9-7/8" hands. [Meeting at Visit] Absolutely top notch arm talent, with accuracy and strength as good as any in the class. Commenters at the Senior Bowl said he stood out for the way the ball leapt out of his hand. The NFL.com scouting profile has him as the #3 quarterback in the class, ahead of DeShone Kizer, so there's clearly something there worth considering. Once again, however, his feet and lower body mechanics are awful, which results in way too much inconsistency. Peterman has a chance to be a good NFL quarterback - maybe even a very good one - but there will be a lot of work he needs to do between now and then. Here is an enthusiastic scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets, which ends with a Round 2 grade. Here is a typically thorough, gif-supported scouting report from BillsWire. The PFF scouting profile leads off with this fascinating stat: "Had the nation's No. 2 passer rating when pressured." You've got to respect that! This balanced scouting profile ends with a Round 5 grade based largely on concerns about arm strength. This scouting profile uses Alex Smith as the pro comparison, which isn't rare and comes from the combination of really good accuracy, solid "game management" skills, and the lack of any "wow factor" to get you excited.

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Davis Webb, QB, California - 6'5", 229 lbs. [Meeting at pro day and Visit] Webb is a guy who seems to have that "it" factor you need to really excel in the NFL, along with the over-the-top work ethic that turns so many ho hum prospects into genuine keepers. The problem is that his mechanics are a mess, which has caused him to be inconsistent to the point that it's fair to use the word "erratic." This goes for both his throwing accuracy, and his decision making. He started out at Texas Tech but lost the job to Patrick Mahomes, which may say something. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. The Steelers met with Webb at his pro day. This extremely long, gif-supported, interview/scouting report is a great place to dig in quickly. Here is the full Walter Football scouting profile. This goes to a typically deep Sports Illustrated article/scouting profile that will give you a feel for the young man as well as the player. This goes to a briefer but still okay scouting profile. The PFF scouting profile argues that Webb started 2016 at a tops-in-the-country pace, but fell off a cliff from Game 6 on.

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Jake Butt, TE, Michigan - 6'5", 246 lbs. with 32" arms and 10" hands. Butt had an amazingly productive career at Michigan, where he seemed to absorb everything Jim Harbaugh tried to teach. Probably one of the best rounded of all the TE prospects, he falls in the rankings for two reasons: (i) he is an excellent athlete but not a freak, and (ii) he tore his ACL in the bowl game. The good news is that his rehab seems to be ahead of schedule, leaving an outside chance that he could still contribute in his rookie year. This is his NFL.com scouting profile. The PFF scouting profile describes Butt as a smart receiver more than a mismatch talent, and a work in progress as a blocker. The full Walter Football scouting profile calls him a "poor man's Jeremy Shockey," which isn't exactly an insult. YouTube offers this 4-minute video scouting report and this 3-minute video scouting report.

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Bucky Hodges, TE, Va. Tech - 6'6", 257 lbs. with 32-1/2" arms and 10-1/8" hands. An honest to god comparable for Ladarius Green. With his tremendous speed, jumping ability (11'2" vertical!), and height, Hodges earned his living as a seam buster who regularly made long completions down the middle. He has the size to block but never really learned how to do it. He's never even played in a 3-point stance for that matter, so there's no way to be sure about the key feature for that - whether he has that all-important desire to stick his face in the chest of pass rushers who are bigger and stronger than he is. He'd rank a little higher if his route running skills measured up to his natural talent. Hodges got a boost from the combine with very impressive vertical jump (best TE in class), broad jump (TE combine record) and shuttle numbers. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to an article comparing 8 of this year's TE prospects. This interesting scouting profile draws a somewhat compelling analogy to Steeler-killer Julius Thomas. This solid scouting report agrees with the rest that his college film shows "a big-bodied pass catcher who excels at winning in contested situation." This scouting profile is the same and reaches the same solid Round 2 grade, as does this Bears-oriented scouting profile. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Packers adds that Hodges began as a 4-star QB recruit before shifting over to TE. Here is a 2-minute video scouting report. This briefer scouting profile examines his fit with Dallas as an heir to Witten. Here is another scouting profile in line with the general impression: an athletic, playmaking "Move TE" with the size to block but zero experience trying to do so. This goes to a decent list of all relevant stats. This April scouting profile from Hogs Haven views Hodges as an oversized receiver who will need several years to learn all the skills required of an NFL Tight End.

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Wayne Gallman, RB, Clemson - 6' 0", 215 lbs. with 32-5/8" arms and 9-1/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] An excellent runner who deserves a higher grade, but for the Steelers he needs a steep discount because he'd only see the field if Bell was hurt or taking a breather. His NFL.com scouting profile describes a hard, nasty and competitive running style bigger than his body measurements, with some major technical flaws that coaching might be able to fix. This scouting profile ends with a Round 3 grade based on a limited ceiling versus a broad range of assets. This goes to a stat-heavy December scouting profile. This gif-heavy scouting profile ends with a Round 3-4 grade based on his tenacity, balanced by problems with his pad level, blocking ability, and possibly durability. You can add in "long strider" if you are a fan of pure quickness. This good, gif-supported scouting report emphasizes that Gallman is a competent 3-down back but not an overly brilliant athlete in any particular way, ending with a Round 2 grade. This Raiders oriented, gif-supported scouting report ends with a Round 2 grade but a Round 3 estimate on the theory that other talents in this particular draft will push him down. Here is a decent scouting profile (with an annoying video in front). This goes to a decent video scouting report for those who like them. The full Walter Football scouting profile ends with a comparison to Rashad Jennings that seems kind of fair. This Chiefs-oriented scouting profile ends with a "pass" because the author prefers more of a make-'em-miss style of back - which may be ironic since the PFF scouting profile emphasizes Gallman's skill in just that facet of the game. This scouting profile from our sister site for the 49ers believes Gallman, like many other backs this year, is a Day 2 talent who's likely to be available in Day 3.

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Kareem Hunt, RB, Toledo - 5' 11", 208 lbs. with 31-3/8" arms and 9-5/8" hands. A standout at the Senior Bowl for some good runs that featured shiftiness and acceleration in the hole. Mike Mayock and the crew have particularly praised his fantastic "contact balance", meaning the ability to get hit but still stay on his feet. That kind of decisive running is what the NFL.com scouting profile worried he might not have. This late January scouting profile ends with a (somewhat optimistic) Round 2 grade, but is fair when it calls him a power runner with shifty feet - a good combination. This scouting profile from a Chiefs site ends with a fringe-2nd grade, noting that the only real drawback to Hunt's game is a lack of breakaway speed. This solid January scouting profile emphasizes Hunt's effort and balance, limited once again by the lack of long speed. Here is an admiring scouting profile from a Colts site - a team that needs a good running back and thus takes this year's bumper crop seriously. This well done April scouting profile comes from our sister site for the Giants.

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Jamaal Williams, RB, BYU - 6' 0", 212 lbs. with 31-1/4" arms and 10" hands. Williams is a good, solid, all-around back who'd be a fine backup for Lev Bell. Mike Mayock called him a "tough, downhill, does everything back" who's particularly noticeable as a finisher. As outlined in this solid mid-process scouting profile, Williams is a powerful downhill runner who routinely breaks arm tackles, has enough slickness to make people miss, and enough speed to gobble up yards if he breaks free. Nice patience before the hole and burst through it as well. He comes to the league as more of a two-down back, however, because his pass blocking skills aren't great (something learnable) and he's never really been used as a receiver. Williams' college career had a couple of seemingly minor off-field bumps in the road with time off in 2015 for undisclosed "personal reasons" (also reported as violations of team rules) and a Junior season that included a suspension for drinking, which wouldn't have mattered as much if this wasn't BYU. There was also a 2015 knee injury. Here is his NFL.com scouting profile. This February scouting profile appears to be more detailed than most and is worth a read. This goes to a gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Eagles, and this to a simpler scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets. This goes to a 4-minute video scouting report. This video scouting profile from Matt Waldman is typically thorough (see this Colts-fan discussion about it), but goes back to October (same thing for this October scouting profile). This scouting profile considers him a Day 2 value. This January article gives a summary of various positive opinions as of that date. This goes to the (for now) brief CBS scouting profile. This scouting profile is typical by its emphasis on Williams' ability to get extra yards by moving a pile, combined with surprising shiftiness but a lack of true 3rd-down back characteristics. This February article discusses the Round 3 grade from Mel Kiper. And just in case you needed more, here is a briefer scouting profile from January.

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Chad Hansen, WR, California - 6'2", 202 lbs. with 32-1/8" arms and big 10-1/8" hands. A receiver with a very high floor because he is almost great in almost every category (size, strength, speed, hands, body control, route running, you-name-it), and likely to become a true #1 guy with a bit of good coaching. His 4.55 at the Combine was slower than he plays. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. Here is a (very) brief DraftWire summary. This is a better writeup, which emphasizes that he plays faster than he'll measure and has great hands, but is less physical and ‘alpha' than he should be. This goes to a Cowboys-oriented scouting profile, based on the same author's more neutral, gif-supported scouting report here. This upbeat scouting profile ends in a mid- to late-1st grade. Here are the Walter Football WR summaries.

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Josh Reynolds, WR, Texas A&M - 6'3", 194 lbs. with 31-1/2" arms and 9-3/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Your classic, take-the-top-off deep threat with great height, great body control, great leaping ability, good hands, an ability to win contested balls, and astonishing speed. Also a classic one trick pony who is much faster than he is quick, so thin that press corners can throw him around, and very little knowledge about the craft of being a WR. Think 'Martavis Bryant with human-level elusiveness and without the off field questions. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. Here is a nice scouting profile from our sister site for the Rams. The PFF scouting report sums it up nicely: an effective #2 or #3 option early in his career. Here is a gif-supported scouting report from Cincy Jungle. This gif-supported scouting report also sees him as an early contributor in the take-the-top-off mold. That one ends with a Round 3-5 grade. This equally thorough, gif-supported scouting report from a Rams POV ends with a Round 2-3 grade. This goes to a Sports Illustrated interview article. Here is a Vikings-oriented scouting profile (a team that can use some WR help). Here is a brief scouting profile from our sister site for the Ravens.

4:01

Jarron Jones, DL, Notre Dame - 6'6", 316 lbs. with 35-1/2" arms and 10-1/2" hands. Lots of questions about his motivation and dedication to the game. He looks to have what you want in size, length and athleticism. Good explosiveness and can push the pocket. His quickness can allow him to get good penetration but needs to work on his pad level and lower body strength. Could be a good player to take a chance on as the draft goes on but the character concerns are making scouts wary. Here is his NFL.com scouting profile.

4:01

Tanner Vallejo, ILB, Boise State - 6'1", 228 lbs. with 30-1/2" arms and 9-5/8" hands. Vallejo's a guy who might be a hidden gem because his Senior year was crippled by torn wrist ligaments suffered in the early part of 2016. He played through it, but the results were well below what he'd done in prior years. The big question mark for us is speed: can he be a true, cover-heavy Mack ILB or is he someone who'd compete with the huge Steeler depth at the Buck position? Here is a December scouting profile. This goes to a local news article on his Combine invitation.

4:01

Eddie Jackson, S, Alabama - 6'0", 201 lbs. with 32-1/4" arms and 9-1/4" hands. A bit undersized, Jackson was a real team leader on the nation's best defense until he broke his leg partway through the season. His football IQ is unquestioned, like the leadership part, but was he a product of playing behind and around so many other great talents? Those will be hard questions to answer. His NFL.com scouting profile mentions some experience as a punt returner as well.

4:01

Nate Hairston, CB, Temple - 6'0", 196 lbs. with 31" arms and 9-1/2" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Hairston is one of those players that Steeler Nation would love, "another tough Temple kid" according to Mike Mayock, who plays with a physical, stick-it-to-'em, team first attitude. He's not exactly slow (4.52) but he's one of those prospects people describe as "quicker than he is fast." His technique is okay, but very rudimentary because he played receiver for his entire career until the 2015 season (perhaps because his hands are kind if iffy). As the NFL.com scouting profile puts it, "Hairston is a projection-based talent who should become a much better player in two years than he is today." This goes to a video interview after his very good Shrine game showing. He particularly excelled on special teams at the Shrine game, btw.

4:01

De'Angelo Henderson, RB, Coastal Carolina - 5'7", 208 lbs. with 9-1/2" hands. No, those measurements are not a typo. This is the ultimate fireplug. A favorite prospect ever since the Combine coverage, when both Daniel Jeremiah and Marshall Faulk noted an uncanny similarity to Maurice Jones-Drew. An MJD clone would be the perfect backup for Lev Bell - if the analogy holds. As discussed in the NFL.com scouting profile, Henderson is fast (4.48), explosive (34" vertical despite his build), and "with access to an accelerator that gets him around the corner or through the line of scrimmage quickly". The biggest knock is level of competition and a need to work on various coachable problems. This goes to a brief scouting profile (many will surely follow after the Combine). Henderson is keeping a draft diary if you want to see something more personal (Hint: he didn't like being tried out as a fullback).

4:01

Brian Hill, RB, Wyoming - 6' 1", 219 lbs. with 31-3/8" arms and 8-7/8" hands. An excellent runner who'd rank even higher if he'd shown any ability as a receiver and possessed just a bit more in the way of breakaway speed. Stylewise, Hill is a big, strong runner with enough wiggle to make the first guy miss, and notably good skills as a pass protector. Hill also excelled in the Combine tests for explosiveness, which makes sense in light of his ability to get skinny in the hole and then shoot suddenly through. This goes to a nice scouting profile from a Colts perspective. Here is a comparable scouting profile from a Broncos POV. This goes to a decent, if brief scouting profile from a Patriots angle. This scouting profile calls him a "good all-around running back" and compares him to DeMarco Murray. Here's a good description: "A gritty, fast-twitched runner that gets skinny in the hole." Here is a fun one: a "showdown" scouting profile on Marlon Mack vs. Brian Hill. Here is a fair but quite critical scouting profile. This scouting profile is similar - critical but fair. This more positive scouting profile touts Hill's "superb vision."

4:01

Marlon Mack, RB, USF - 5' 11", 213 lbs. with 32" arms and 9" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Excellent speed and very accomplished as a receiver out of the backfield and split wide, who has shown consistent production with three straight 1,000 yard seasons. Early reports assumed he would be more of a 3rd-down specialist to upgrade Fitz Toussaint than the desired backup for Lev Bell, but later reviewers such as Bucky Brooks have argued he has enough power to do both. This goes to a brief scouting profile. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile, which emphasizes Mack's great elusiveness ("looks like he has ball bearings in his hips") and top notch speed, tied to some fumbling issues and questionable power. Here is a fun one: a "showdown" scouting profile on Marlon Mack vs. Brian Hill. This scouting profile is interesting because it describes a tool kit that sounds a lot like an outside-zone wunderkind. Is that what Pittsburgh really wants? Coach Munchak used to love that style... This goes to a scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets, and this to a scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants. It makes my inner New Yorker proud. This Chiefs-oriented scouting profile is quite positive, viewing Mack as "a big play waiting to happen" and thus a good replacement for Jamaal Charles. This Broncos-oriented scouting profile uses Shady McCoy as the pro comparison, which works stylewise though Shady may be Mack's dream-level ceiling rather than a reasonable measuring stick.

4:01

Noah Brown, WR, Ohio State - 6'2", 222 lbs. with 31-3/4" arms and 9-1/8" hands. As summarized by the NFL.com scouting profile, Noah Brown is a "big receiver who plays like it," but "lacks desired experience [and skills] thanks to age, injury, and depth at the position over the years." His athletic numbers are more than adequate, including a 4.55 dash at his pro day. Mike Mayock noted in the Combine coverage that "he [Brown] gets in and out of breaks better than I expected for a big guy," and "he catches EVERYTHING". Noah Brown would give the Steelers a bigger, more athletic, better pedigreed, and much rawer version of Cobi Hamilton. The biggest question here is one we can't answer: "Why?" Brown is a classic example of a player who could have shot his draft stock upward by staying an extra year in college. The fact that he's entering the draft as a redshirt Sophomore says something - we just don't know what. Here are the Walter Football WR summaries. The PFF scouting profile calls him a "fearless" blocker, which is always appreciated in the Burgh. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants agrees: "He blocks like the defender owes him money." Love it! This goes to a 4-part scouting profile. Here is a scouting profile from a Buckeyes fan site, which explains that Brown's lost season to a 2015 broken leg is a major factor that pushed him into the pros.

4:16

Ejuan Price, Edge, Pittsburgh - 5'11", 241 lbs. with 32-3/4" arms and big 10" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] A true terror in college who doesn't have the length people look for in the pros. Can he carry the success into the NFL and be the next undersized pass rusher in the mold of James Harrison? Or will he be another in the long line of casualties who discover that those standard physical prototypes are used for a reason? Note that muscle injuries from a few years ago mean that Price is a 6th-year senior and will be a 24 year old rookie. That's a bit older than Tomlin prefers, and also raises some medical red flags. It doesn't help that he tested poorly, with SPARQ scores in the bottom 20% of the NFL. This goes to the CBS scouting profile, which ends on a 5th-Round grade despite its comparison to Elvis Dumervil (who was, admittedly, a Round 4 pick). The NFL.com scouting profile compares him to James Harrison for burst and explosiveness, but seems to doubt whether he can develop the same kind of dip that turned Deebo's lack of inches into a pass rushing asset. This February scouting profile continues the analogy to Harrison, emphasizing Price's quick-twitch athleticism and burst, but also notes some stiffness. This February scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants goes back to Elvis Dumerville as the comp. This fun article examines the overblown height issue, an argument that will be well received by many on this site since Price actually has lengthy arms (the kid's built like a gorilla). The brief note in here on Price's pro day has an interesting observation: "This is a really good football player, but the question is, can he be a linebacker in the NFL? Elvis Dumervil had similar questions coming out of Louisville but Dumervil was slightly taller and 20 pounds heavier."

4:16

Jayon Brown, ILB, UCLA - 6'0", 231 lbs. with 31-3/8" arms and 9" hands. Another young player from Tom Bradley's new home, Jayon Brown is a Mack ILB all day. According to Mike Mayock, "He moves like a Safety... and is one of the best special team players in the draft." The Steelers have no real backup for Ryan Shazier, which may be enough to earn Jayon Brown a mid-round selection. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. The PFF scouting profile emphasizes Brown's stats and coverage ability, with size being his only real limitation. This is a player who will be great when the defensive line protects him, but eliminated if asked to stack and shed some behemoth offensive guard.

4:16

Josh Carraway, Edge/ILB, TCU - 6'3", 242 lbs. with exceptional 34-1/4" arms and 9-3/4" hands. The NFL.com scouting profile seems to be in line with the general consensus that Carraway is a brilliant athlete who has the physical tools to succeed, but needs some good coaching and strength training to get him revved and focused. The sales pitch is that he came off as a "wow" athlete in college, but never developed that sense of being a scary engine of destruction. The Combine pretty much ruined that narrative. He may have arms like an ape, but his explosiveness in the tests was almost pitiful, and enough to peg him into the bottom quarter of the NFL from a SPARQ score perspective. OTOH... Mike Mayock suggests that he projects better as an ILB: "a 4-3 Will LB who can jump into your sub package and come off the edge.... [and who] really understands speed to power." Sort of like a minor league version of Haason Reddick? Here is a late March scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins (check it out for the web graph if nothing else).

4:16

Matt Milano, ILB, Boston College - 6'0", 223 lbs. with 32" arms and 9-3/8" hands. A general purpose ILB who "plays nasty" according to Mike Mayock. He has experience in coverage and might be able to serve as a backup Mack ILB. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile.

4:16

Lorenzo Jerome, S, Saint Francis (PA) - 5'10", 204 lbs. with short 30-5/8" arms [Meeting at the Combine] Think: Tyler Matakevich at the Safety position. As Mike Mayock put it, Jerome is a "really good football player" with everything you could ask for except NFL size and speed. Those are pretty serious flaws. OTOH, as the NFL.com scouting profile puts it: "NFL teams love instinctive safeties who take the ball away and Jerome is working on a Master's Degree in both categories." Strong production leading to first-team All Northeast Conference selection in every season of his college career. Has experience returning both kicks and punts. Had a very impressive showing at the Senior Bowl by getting 2 interceptions and forcing a fumble. That kind of performance stands out considering he comes from a less well-known college like St. Francis and could help offset some questions about his athleticism. This is a fun gif-filled breakdown his play. There seems to be some buzz about him being a bit of a sleeper (probably due to his small school status) but most sites place him around the 4th round. This goes to a non-bungled, gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for that Cincinnati team.

4:16

Xavier Woods, S, Louisiana Tech - 5'11", 197 lbs. with 30-3/8" arms and 9-3/8" hands. Woods performed well both against the run as well as in coverage. He showed a lot of versatility in where he lined up and had a knack for making plays on the ball. Ganggreennation ran a profile on him that suggests he'd fit well as a FS and attributes his versatility to coming into college as a CB prospect. Struggles against faster WRs could point to a lack of athleticism and he'll need to work on his tackling to handle the step up to the NFL. Here is his CBS scouting profile.

4:16

Brian Allen, CB/S, Utah - 6'3", 215 lbs. with very long 34" arms and 10" hands. Sleeper alert. Brian Allen is a converted WR who is only beginning to learn the position. He came onto the radar big time with his Combine measurements and an impressive 4.48 dash to show off his long speed. He also moved surprisingly well in the drills, tested solid across the board, and reportedly has a tremendous work ethic and locker room character. He will absolutely require a redshirt year to learn some technique, but looks like a superb Day 3 target for the practice squad because his ultimate ceiling could be sky high at either Corner or playing center field Free Safety. He's also a bit on the older side (24), which costs him maybe half a round on the grade. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to a local news article on the Combine performances of Utes Brian Allen and Marcus Williams.

4:16

Corey Clement, RB, Wisconsin - 5'10" 220 lbs. with 30-1/2" arms and 9-3/4" hands. Corey Clement is a tough call. His physical skills - especially the elusiveness and jump cuts in such a large man - deserve a higher grade. But the NFL.com scouting profile lists some really serious rumors along these lines: "Scouts have labeled him ‘entitled' and question his football character and leadership." And this quote attributed to an NFC North scout: "He checked out mentally on the entire 2015 season and wasn't very well liked inside that program. Then you add durability concerns and that's a problem." We, of course, can neither confirm nor rebut such rumors. This very solid scouting profile emphasizes that his coach tried to rebut those rumors in a letter sent to every NFL team. That says something, as does the fact that his local NFL franchise (the Packers) gave him an interview. If the Steelers pick him we can assume the rumors are false - that is exactly the sort of thing that no one named Tomlin or Rooney is going to tolerate. In the Combine coverage Mike Mayock described Clement as a "good, tough football player" who can pass protect well but isn't much of a receiver. The author of this scouting profile ranks Clement as his #5 RB in the class. This scouting profile agrees that he has "a ton of raw potential." This gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Texans wins hands down as an attempt at detailed analysis.

4:16

James Conner, RB, Pittsburgh - 6'1", 233 lbs. with 31-1/4" arms and 9-7/8" hands. [Meeting at Visit] Showed phenomenal strength of character in overcoming a diagnosis of Hodgkin's lymphoma to return to the field and excel. Strong runner that tends to blow through arm tackles and aggressive with stiff-arms. He looks to be a solid choice of a goal line back but may lack the agility and acceleration to make some of the more finesse-driven runs happen. OTOH, he has reported that the cancer rehab slowed him down in 2016, which makes a lot of sense. So there's probably some upside that didn't show up on his recent film. Conner obviously comes with some medical concerns, and is of limited use as a pass catcher out of the backfield. FWIW, the pro comp here is obvious and cited to the point of being overused and trite: James Conner reminds everybody of a poor man's Marshawn Lynch - and maybe not that poor if he really does have an extra step that's still coming back. He's an exciting prospect for much more than the cancer story and the local connection.

Here is his NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to a scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants. This fine, gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Jaguars considers Conner a potential steal in Round 4. The PFF scouting profile emphasizes - you guessed it - Conner's unsurpassed ability to break tackles. "A battering ram with the heart of a lion" goes the quote from this Gang Green scouting profile. Here's another good phrase from a scouting profile: "Determination, strength and hard work." This Packers-oriented scouting profile offers a third: "James Conner inspires everyone." This is getting repetitive... so here's a more critical scouting profile that ends with a Round 6 grade due to doubts that Conner will recover his full explosiveness. This gif-supported scouting report translates to a Round 4 grade. And this gif-supported scouting report goes last, because it's one of the better reads. Resorting to quotes a final time: "Unfortunately for Conner, he doesn't have the top end speed or even the second gear to break away from defenders. What Conner does have is physicality. He's a battering ram and delivers jarring hits to fight off initial tacklers. His stiff arm should be registered as a lethal weapon as he delivers a powerful blow when using it." Sold. That's what the team was hoping to get with the infamous Mr. Blount. Getting it from a high-character alternative would be just about ideal.

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Jeremy McNichols, RB, Boise St. - 5'9", 212 lbs. with 31-1/2" arms and 10" hands. An elusive back that doesn't dance too much. McNichols has good vision and sets up his offensive line well. Very fluid and quick when changing direction. He has the ability to run up the middle as well as split out as a pass catching option. May not have exceptional top speed and there are questions about his ability to break tackles in the NFL. Had trouble holding onto the ball and struggled in pass protection. Here is his NFL.com scouting profile.

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Amara Darboh, WR, Michigan - 6'2", 214 lbs. with 32-5/8" arms and big 9-7/8" hands. Darboh is the kind of receiver who will cause a lot of debate in NFL war rooms. He has wonderful size and played in a pro style offense, where he demonstrated the ability to learn a route tree, be a blocker, and adjust in the sorts of QB-friendly ways that mark a good teammate. He also has that immigrant mentality (escaped from war torn Sierra Leone as a child), which all but guarantees that he will work as hard as anybody in any locker room. Where he's lacking are the native physical skills of pure speed and quick-twitch elusiveness. The NFL.com scouting profile suggests that he could grow into a fine #2 in the Mohammed Sanu mold. This goes to a nice scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants. This admiring scouting profile came after Darboh's fine performance at the Senior Bowl.

5:01

Tanoh Kpassagnon, DL, Villanova - 6'7", 289 lbs. with arms like vines (35-5/8") and hands like mitts (10-5/8") [Meeting at the Combine and a Workout] Has almost zero idea what he's doing on the field, but to summarize comments from the NFL Combine coverage he is one of the finest physical specimens ever seen in the last 25 years of the draft. He's not particularly bendy, but actually showed some very fine movement skills in the drills. For Pittsburgh he'd be a developmental defensive end playing behind Heyward, Tuitt, Matthews, Walton, and Maxey. Errrr, make that playing for a spot on the practice squad behind Maxey. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to a full Walter Football scouting profile. This goes to a Sports Illustrated profile, which naturally covers much more than just his play on the field. And here's one more sort of average scouting profile to get you going. He's such a fascinating boom-or-bust guy that we could fill this Board with many more links than make sense given the very slim odds. Here are a late March scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins (check it out for the web graph if nothing else) and an early April scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants.

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Elijah Qualls, DL, Washington - 6'1", 313 lbs. with 30-5/8" arms and 9-3/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] A penetrating NT in the Javon Hargrave mold. He's good at the double-team run stuffing part and has quicker feet than you'd guess, but he lacks the pop to succeed as a pass rusher. He'd get a higher grade if there was a hole, but in Pittsburgh he would be nothing but a deep backup even if all his effort issues cleared up. Here are the NFL.com scouting profile and the CBS scouting profile to get you started. This December scouting profile ends with a Round 5 grade, which is probably fair for a team where he'd be a better fit. This scouting profile assumes 320 lbs., and builds on that to view him as a classic 3-4 NT. Other sources doubt that weight (or at least that much quality weight). This goes to a highlight-heavy scouting report from our sister site for the Redskins.

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Hunter Dimick, Edge, Utah - 6'3", 266 lbs. Hunter Dimick plays a great game. He's a very good technical pass-rusher, and reliable run-stopper as well. I'd like to gush about how he would be a great Steeler, playing tenacious, hard-nosed football, but he doesn't fit with the athletic freaks Pittsburgh has stacked in the Linebacker core, and I'm not sure if he could survive a scheme change. His attention to detail and size might find him a place as a DE, but it's hard to see him any sooner than the 4th round. Probably 5th round choice, unless his measurable really pop. Check out some of the scouting reports on him if you get the chance, could be a great hidden value in the later rounds.

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Noble Nwachukwu, Edge, West Virginia - 6'1", 268 lbs. with 33-1/8" arms and 9" hands. The NFL.com scouting profile describes a serious young football player with good explosiveness, twitch, acceleration, and even some bend around the edge. What's missing is length, which he can't do anything about, and enough technique to get around the physical limitations, which he's yet to learn. His assets got him a lot of attention in 2015, but he did less well in 2016 because opposing tackles made some adjustments that Nwachukwu never learned to counter. It would be interesting to see his SPARQ scores if he dropped 10-15 pounds... Gets two thumbs up and more for his character on the field, off the field, and in the locker room.

5:01

Kendell Beckwith, ILB, LSU - 6'2", 243 lbs. with 33" arms and 9-1/2" hands. A run-stuffing Buck ILB who'd grade higher if the Steelers didn't have Vince Williams, Tyler Matakevich, A.J. Fort, and Arthur Moats ready to play that position already. Here is the CBS scouting profile. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile.

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Vince Biegel, ILB/Edge, Wisconsin - 6'3", 246 lbs. with 32-3/8" arms and 9-1/8" hands. [Meeting at Pro Day] An ILB prospect on the line between run-stuffing Buck and edge-setting OLB. Tremendous football character but the pass rush skills are missing. Would double as a fabulous special teams player. Joined T.J. Watt for dinner with Colbert and Tomlin after their pro day. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile.

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Jalen Myrick, CB, Minnesota - 5'10", 200 lbs. with 31-5/8" arms and 8-3/4 hands. [Meeting at Visit] Shot onto the scene by demonstrating astonishing speed at the Combine. Everyone knows that John Ross' 4.22 set the new Combine record. Myrick ended with a 4.28 but was clearly faster than Ross in the 10-yard split. Mike Mayock sees him as a future Nickel because he is known for extreme quickness and being intensely competitive when it comes to click-and-close tackling. The NFL.com scouting profile identifies his biggest flaws as various football IQ and technique issues, which should be coachable if he has the right stuff above the neck. The PFF scouting profile lauds the physical tools, but notes several real technique problem (such as tackling and overall physicality) that will need to be fixed before he can play at an NFL level. Here is a full CBS scouting profile.

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Antonio Pipkin, QB, Tiffin - 6'1", 225 lbs. with 32-1/4" arms and 10" hands. D2 QB with huge numbers. Watch the tape, and see that he's far better than the level of play that was around him. Pipkin can make the throws, but due to the lower level of competition, he gets away with putting touch on throws that would have to be rifled into his receiver's hands at a higher level of play. And it remains to be seen: how fast is he really? Could be value late round pick, but definitely a gamble whenever you take him.

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Cole Hikutini, TE, Louisville - 6'4", 247 lbs. with 32-3/4" arms and 10" hands. Another clone of Ladarius Green, who has the size to become a blocker but has instead made his living as a devastating seam-buster and safety outlet. The receiving assets are all top notch - height, speed, reach, quickness, hands, and route running all get high grades. It's just that he's not a complete Tight End, and it isn't clear if he wants to be. Interviews will matter - there seems to be more opposition to Hikutini in the scouting community than the numbers can ever explain. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to a December article listing 10 teams who might want to draft Hikutini - the Steelers come in at #3. This February scouting profile from Hogs Haven opines that Hikutini is more quick than fast - something to watch for at the Combine. 40 times could actually matter. This January article summarizes 5 TE prospects, including Hikutini.

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Blake Jarwin, TE, Oklahoma State - 6'4", 248 lbs. Jarwin is one of those players who will grow on you every time you learn a bit more about him. Let's get the "bad" out of the way first: he's not a miracle athlete. But he's a hell of a football player, with excellent hands, a genuine knack for finding the open spots in a zone, and all the grit it takes to be a fine blocker. Exhibit A: he earned a spot as a walk-on, always a good sign. Exhibit B: he won the 2015 Barry Sanders Award for giving the greatest contribution with the least recognition. That'll do. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile. Here is a quite competent scouting profile that ends with a Day 3 grade and an impression that he'd go higher in any other year.

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Michael Roberts, TE, Toledo - 6'4", 270 lbs. with long 33" arms and catcher's mitts for hands (11-1/2"). [Meeting at the Combine] Roberts is that rare thing in modern Tight End prospects: a balanced player who is equally good at both blocking and receiving. The drawbacks? He doesn't appear to be an athletic marvel who will create mismatches due to some crazy talent, and he hasn't faced really elite competition. Sounds a lot like someone with a floor at #3, which guarantees an NFL career to be proud of, but not a lot of chance at making the pro bowl or even becoming a true #1. Matt Spaeth might be a familiar name to compare him to. If you watched the Combine coverage, this is the young man Mike Mayock talked about who worked three jobs to pay for his freshman year at Toledo. Mayock also said that he improved steadily in each of his years until breaking out in 2016. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile. Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants, another scouting profile from our sister site for the Falcons, and a third scouting profile from our sister site for the Patriots. The PFF scouting profile loves everything about Roberts except his limited athleticism compared to some of the freakish, quasi-human geniuses in this particular class. This goes to a Dolphins-oriented scouting profile, and here is a scouting profile from TexansWire.

5:01

Matt Dayes, RB, N.C. State - 5'9" 205 lbs. With 30" arms and big 10-1/2" hands. A decent enough prospect as a contributing role player, especially on 3rd down where his pass catching skills would add value, but probably not an improvement on Toussaint. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to a much more positive scouting profile that ends with a Round 3 grade. Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins. This scouting profile ends with a decent video of his Clemson game plus a nice, pith summary: "A lesser Gio Bernard."

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Aaron Jones, RB, UTEP - 5'9" 208 lbs. with 32-1/2" arms and 9-1/2" hands. A very productive but little known running back who was buried in the field until he blew up the Combine with best of show performances in the [drawing a breath] vertical jump, broad jump, 3-cone drill, short shuttle, and long shuttle. Whew! The red flags are level of competitions and a DUI in March of 2015. Stylistically, Jones seems to be a big play specialist who thrives on long runs and RAC. This goes to a stats-heavy scouting profile. Here is an interview where he touts his versatility. Mike Mayock describes him as a straight line but very productive small school prospect.

5:01

Shelton Gibson, WR, W.Va. - 5'11", 191 lbs. with 32" arms and 8-7/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine & Visit] A pure example of the tape saying one thing, and the Combine saying another. Here's the gist of the NFL.com scouting profile: "Flat. Out. Fast. Has run-by speed on the go routes and can create immediate separation over the top against cornerbacks who overestimate their acceleration. Saw 36 percent of his catches go for 25-plus yards over last two seasons... Fear of his speed creates open, unchallenged throws underneath." Etc. Enter the Combine, and a very pedestrian 4.5 second dash with even worse numbers for the explosiveness tests. This much film doesn't lie. What was going on? Some have said it was a clock problem (no kidding!). Regardless, the 4.39 at his pro day answered the question. He really is as fast as he plays. As noted by this scouting profile for our sister site on the Eagles, Gibson's game looks a lot like DeShaun Jackson's.

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Rayshawn Jenkins S, Miami - 6'1", 214 lbs. with long 32-3/4" arms and 9-5/8" hands. To put it simply, Al Davis would have loved this kid. He is really big, really fast, really athletic, and aggressive. As the NFL.com scouting profile puts it, he "Looks to punish pass catchers over the middle and running backs looking to finish their runs against him." But his football IQ needs a lot of work, and that learning curve will keep him off the field until it's done. The interviews will be key.

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Brendan Langley, CB, Lamar - 6'0", 201 lbs. with 32" arms and 9-1/2" hands. A very solid Day 3 developmental pick. He has the physical tools such as 4.43 speed and top showings in the bench and long shuttle tests, but needs a lot of coaching to put them together. Part of the issue is that he was a bench-sitting WR for Georgia until a year ago, when he transferred to this smaller school. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. This link goes to a SteelersWire scouting profile, and this one to an Eagles-oriented scouting profile. Langley's hopes were dampened if not dashed by a poor showing at the Senior Bowl practices.

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Jonnu Smith, TE, Fla. Int'l - 6'3", 248 lbs. with long 32-7/8" arms and 9-1/4" hands. The Combine's small school, SPARQ score superstar with top of the class marks in basically every category. The NFL.com scouting profile describes him as a "Move TE [with] electric burst [as] a seam buster." He's supposed to be a willing blocker too, just not a good one outside of zone runs. The NFL.com also profile raises some questions about his hands, but other scouting profiles haven't mentioned it. Level of competition is a bigger concern. You may recognize his name as the prospect who was scalded with boiling water by his pregnant girlfriend.

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T.J. Logan, RB, UNC - 5'9" 196 lbs. with 32" arms and 9" hands. A lightning fast (4.37) scat back with decent toughness and kick return skills. Has some fumbling issues. Would be a replacement for Fitz Toussaint rather than a backup for Bell. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to a brief scouting profile.

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Joe Williams, RB, Utah - 5'11" 210 lbs. with 30-3/4" arms and 9-3/8" hands. Joe Williams is one of those awful evaluations where you need to start by acknowledging the solid Day 2 physical talent, and then discount his stock well into Day 3 because of all the red flags. Getting the nasty part out of the way first, Williams was booted out of U. Conn. due to a credit card theft scandal, and then he "retired from football" for a month in 2016 before coming back in a blaze of glory after the other Utah RB's got hurt. All of which adds up to a gigantic, "WTF?" He's addressed the retirement thing directly in this February USA Today article, which details a huge, emotional, and quite moving story tied in with his 7 year old sister's death - which happened back in 2013. Here is a story about the story on NFL.com, and a similar article from Profootballtalk.com. In a nutshell, he seems to have had a delayed emotional breakdown that took him some time and work to get through. View it as you will; it probably says more about the viewer than the viewee. Getting back to the field, Williams is a fast, well rounded runner with decent power, good burst, superb contact balance, and some nice wiggle. The downsides are some fumbling questions plus a combination of bad hands and poor blocking that force him off the field on 3rd downs. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. This goes to a nice scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets. This links to a January scouting profile. This February scouting report can't get over the red flags.

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Amba Etta-Tawo, WR, Syracuse - 6'1", 208 lbs. with 32" arms and 9-1/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] An all-around receiver with above average size, speed, and quickness. Most of the questions go to whether he was a product of the wide-open Syracuse offense, and whether his hands are reliable. There were a number of bad drops interspersed among his many catches, and his Senior Bowl practices were uninspiring. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile, which is always a good place to start. This goes to a somewhat scanty CBS scouting profile, which concludes with a Round 6 grade. Here is a Fox Sports write-up on him from December, which emphasizes the contrast between his flashes of potential greatness and maddening inconsistency. The NFL Draft Scout page is okay for snippets to round things out. This goes to the SB Nation site for Syracuse, which did a December draft status report and also concluded with a Round 6 grade. This January scouting profile makes for an interesting read because it specifies some concrete ways Etta-Tawo could improve his game, such as more running routes to a more reliable depth and actually coming back through the ball on comeback routes. Those are both coachable issues. Here are the Walter Football WR summaries. The PFF scouting profile compares him to Sammie Coates. This scouting profile uses Chris Conley as the comp.

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Mack Hollins, WR, North Carolina - 6'4", 221 lbs. with 33-1/4" arms and 9-3/4" hands. [Meeting at Visit] Looking for a pure vertical and red zone threat who's enough of a sleeper to be available on Day 3? Mack Hollins is your guy. As outlined by the NFL.com scouting profile, he has serious top end speed and the ability to get there quickly. He's also got fabulous height, has the ambition of a walk-on who forced his way into a starting lineup, and has been a special teams captain everywhere he goes. The downsides are iffy hands (sometimes great, sometimes letting the ball eat him up), poor/undeveloped route running, and more speed than quickness. A broken collar bone in 2016 accounts for why he has flown under so many radars. This goes to a fairly positive and fairly thorough scouting profile. This is a particularly interesting scouting profile from PFF, which has a serious man-crush on Hollins. They aren't the only ones. This scouting profile calls him "the perfect Day 3 receiver". This scouting profile gives Hollins credit for a lot of QB Mitchell Trubisky's one year of wonderful success. This discussion at our sister site for the Giants includes some reasoned comparisons to Martavis Bryant - with a love of special teams on top. If that doesn't get your juices flowing, nothing will!

6:01

Javancy Jones, ILB, Jackson State - 6'2", 245 lbs. [Meeting at Visit] A college Edge guy who will move inside at the pro level to be either a 4-3 MLB or a Buck ILB in something like the Steelers 3-4 hybrid system. The more you look the more you'll like except for the position. A Buck ILB who will do nothing more than compete with Matakevich for the #2 spot behind VW, and lacks the speed to back up Shazier? Of course, his pro day proved he's faster than expected... The NFL.com scouting profile emphasizes the same things as everyone else - tremendous, moving character assets tied to NFL-level athletic talent that made him dominant on the small school circuit. There is no more promising young man - as a young man - in the draft. Here is a Texans-oriented report on his Shrine Game performance. This goes to a useful if extremely short scouting summary.

6:01

Calvin Munson, ILB, San Diego State - 6'1", 245 lbs. A sleeper for someone, but probably not Pittsburgh because he seems to be more of a Buck ILB than the Mack we have room for. Here is a particularly solid NFL.com scouting profile.

6:01

Kai Nacua, S, BYU - 6'2", 215 lbs. Nacua is a big box Safety a knack of producing turnovers, and a reputation as a monstrously ferocious hitter. For Pittsburgh he would fit in as an ideal Nickel LB - that elusive mix between an in-the-box Safety who loves to hit, and an undersized linebacker with exceptionally fine coverage skills. Keep an eye on this one - if his SPARQ scores turn out as high as hoped, he could easily shoot up. His grade has actually been pushed down a bit because (a) he was a Combine snub, and (b) none of the public draftniks thought enough of that to include him on any lists. Nacua earned an infamous reputation for a 2014 sucker punch he threw during a brawl between BYU and Memphis in their bowl game, and for getting plugged in reply. He has said all the right things about growing up since then, and formally apologized to both the Memphis coach and team, but it is still a black mark in most opinions because it was so completely unsporting.

6:01

Jack Tocho, S/CB, N.C. State - 6'0", 202 lbs. with 31-5/8" arms and 9-3/4" hands. Jack Tocho is a big Corner who will probably be asked to convert to Free Safety because he's something of a tweener. His odds of success are better than most, however, because he has a renowned work ethic, probably coming from his roots as a Kenyan immigrant, and a reputation for other sterling character traits. He was (naturally) a team captain and sounds like an admirable young man in general. The big knock on his football skills, as described in the NFL.com scouting profile and noted by Mike Mayock, is a seeming terror of getting beat deep. He plays like he doesn't trust his own speed, which wasn't that bad at 4.54. Here is a brief scouting profile from a Cleveland source, and another brief scouting profile from back in December.

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Jeremy Cutrer, CB, Middle Tennessee - 6'2", 170 lbs. A late round pick that multiple sites seem to think of as a potential diamond in the rough. He played safety in high school and prides himself as playing strong against the run. His size and potential position flexibility could intrigue some teams. This cowboysblitz article suggests that teams may look at him as a safety if he can add some weight on. This DraftWire article also gives some insight into his capabilities. He seems to have the required athletic ability to make the jump and would fit with the Steelers liking their CBs to be able to play the run. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets explains that Cutrer made it to LSU twice based on his athletic talent, but flunked out academically both times. Here is a fine, gif-supported ChiefsWire scouting report that praises his football IQ just in case the schoolwork questions had you wondering.

6:01

Jerod Evans, QB, Va. Tech - 6'3", 232 lbs. with 33-1/8" arms and 9-3/8" hands. He had a pretty monster year and surprised everyone by declaring for the draft following his top two targets. I'd like to see more from him, despite his tendency to put the ball up high and let his receivers make the play. Good receivers benefit from a QB who puts them in a position to make big plays, and Evans certainly did that in college. Watching his game film was almost like watching highlights for his receivers. Unless the Steelers go early rounds for a QB, my thinking is: why not?

6:01

Chad Kelly, QB, Ole Miss - 6'2", 225 lbs. Chad Kelly is well known as one of the most talented QB's of this year's crop but he is graded as a 7th round pick. His character issues seem to be a constant, unlike his inconsistent play, and while he has NFL legend pedigree(see Jim Kelly), Jim Kelly was also known for having his off the field distractions. His knee injury may have insured that he won't be an early draft pick, but it would be surprising if no one took a chance on him. Maybe a veteran QB legend who had some early career character issues could mentor him so he could take advantage of that first round talent he's squandering?

6:01

Pharaoh Brown, TE, Oregon - 6'6", 255 lbs. with absurdly long 35-5/8" arms and big 10-3/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Pharaoh Brown is a confusing grade. The NFL.com scouting profile, combined with the Combine, catches some of the contradictions. He is criticized for lacking the play strength you'd expect for a man that size, though he did show "flashes." See a best of class 24 bench presses with arms like an ape. That bespeaks a downright special amount of strength. He is criticized for lacking athleticism. See the 34" vert. He is criticized for awful hands. No comment. My guess is that a "gruesome" 2014 leg injury is playing into this, which makes a projection by folks like us - who have no medical information - little more than a stab in the dark. This goes to a nice background article from his home town. This goes to an article talking about off-field rumors that Brown denies (the paper had published them and is now defending itself). The PFF scouting profile considers Brown an "intriguing" Day 3 or UDFA acquisition.

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Taquan Mizzell, RB, Virginia - 5'10" 195 lbs. Another prospect from our own Igloojoe: "Taquan Mizzell is a very well rounded change of pace back. He's a good runner, receiver, and blocker. He was rated as the #4 change of pace back by drafttek.com, and was seen with the same conclusion by draftblaster.com. He recently lit up the NFLPA game, drawing in rave reviews from this fansided article and this chiefswire article. Mizzell reminds me a ton of a healthy Shane Vereen."

6:01

Ryan Switzer, WR, North Carolina - 5'8", 181 lbs. with 28" arms and 9-1/4" hands. [Meeting at the Senior Bowl] Slot wide receiver with some punt return skills. Doesn't seem to have the top-end speed to keep NFL CBs from smothering him but makes his mark based on crisp patterns and acceleration. Ryan makes his plays using agility and sharp route running. Had 7 touchdowns as a punt returner and was a trusted target for Mitch Trubisky. Here is his NFL.com scouting profile and his CBS scouting profile. Here are the Walter Football WR summaries, which focus on his severe lack of size. This goes to a gif-heavy scouting report from BillsWire. This gi-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Eagles sums things up: a very gifted slot receiver. This gif-supported scouting report from our sister site for the Bills ends with a comparison to Tavon Austin. This Bills-oriented, gif-supported scouting report would agree; and both are particularly educational because they conclude that this type of receiver might be a poor fit for the Buffalo offensive scheme. That distinction leads to some next-level analysis. OTOH, this nice scouting profile points out that Switzer is an easy analysis and offers a reliably high floor for a team that wants this archetype. The PFF scouting profile agrees that he's a guy who is all about quickness. This links to an audio scouting profile. Here is an interview with the young man himself.

6:16

Dane Evans, QB, Tulsa - 6'0", 210 lbs. An undersized QB with a rocket arm. Check out the description by our own Nick Martin in Round 6 of this mock draft. This goes to a local news article from Tulsa on his performance at the Regional Combine.

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Cooper Rush, QB, Central Michigan - 6'3" 228 lbs. with 32-3/8" arms and 9-1/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] On the Board because of the interview. Cooper Rush fits the profile of a backup - all the brains, character, and intangibles in the world but lacking the power and stature you want to see. The NFL.com scouting profile comments about a "lollipop arm" capture the issues in a nutshell. OTOH, intangibles matter more at the Quarterback position than anywhere else on the field, you can't undervalue class, and Rush looks like a kid who could be drastically changed by working with professional strength trainers for a year or two. Here is a February scouting profile if you want to get more angles. This scouting profile follows the conclusions in the others. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Jets ends with a Round 5 grade. Here is a quick interview if you want to see some of his own words.

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Scott Orndoff, TE, Pitt - 6'5", 253 lbs. with long 33-1/4" arms and 10" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] A local product from Waynesburgh and Pitt with a reputation as a very good blocker but a very meh athlete, as shown by his Combine results. His hands have been better for contested catches than easy ones, which points to an area that can be improved with coaching and practice. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. This link goes to a somewhat cursory interview. Here is a very good article from his hometown newspaper (Dale Lolley is a very well respected local reporter on the Steelers for those outside the area).

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Tarik Cohen, RB, N. Car. A&T -  5'6" 179 lbs. with 29-3/4" arms and big 10-1/8" hands. And now we come to the young man "Nicknamed The Human Joystick for his ability to make seemingly impossible cuts" (a quote from the NFL scouting profile). Our own Tannofsteel did this Fanpost scouting profile, which includes a photo of Cohen's fabulous parlor trick where he catches TWO footballs while doing a backflip. That's just wrong. Cohen may have the funnest highlight real in the draft. He is the ultimate "make something out of nothing" "turn every run into a punt return" guy. The obvious downside is size. 5'6"? Really? Yes, it's a solid 5-6, but really? Mike Mayock compared him to Donte Hall during the Combine coverage. This Combine overreaction scouting profile ends with a Round 3 grade ("Darren Sproles 2.0 couldn't be any more accurate").

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Donnel Pumphrey, RB, San Diego St. - 5'8" 176 lbs. with 29" arms and 8-1/2" hands (he played in the 160's). If you thought Tarik Cohen was small, take note that Donnel Pumphrey, the all time rusher in college football history - is only an inch taller and is three pounds lighter. Tiny. [Insert painful memory of Dri Archer]. Mike Mayock has acknowledged the "outstanding jump cut", and Marshal Faulk (an alumnus of San Diego St.) swears that Pumphrey can take the NFL pounding, but our experience has just been too harsh. This scouting profile ends with a Round 4 grade. This scouting profile from a Patriots POV more or less agrees.

6:16

Chad Williams, WR, Grambling State - 6'1", 204 lbs. with 32" arms and 9-3/4" hands. Chad shows some good strength and physicality at and after the catch. His speed, quickness, and level of competition will keep him from being a highly touted draft pick. He'll probably be grabbed late as a developmental pick if teams believe his legal troubles before his senior year are behind him (charged with possession of marijuana and firearms). Here is his NFL.com scouting profile. Here are the Walter Football WR summaries.

7:01

Fadol Brown, DL, Ole Miss - 6'4", 273 lbs. with long 35" arms and 10-1/4" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] A late draft developmental prospect as a defensive end and maybe a sub package puzzle piece. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile.

7:01

Davon Godchaux, DL, LSU - 6'3", 310 lbs. with short (for the position) 32-3/8" arms and 10-1/4" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] An odd interview for the Steelers since he projects as a 4-3 Tweener. The NT model we look for usually includes more length. According to the NFL.com scouting profile he does have some explosiveness to his game.

7:01

Isaac Rochell, DL, Notre Dame - 6'4", 280 lbs. with 32-3/4" arms and 9-3/4" hands. [Meeting at the Senior Bowl] Could be grabbed for low-round depth at the DE position. Some of the questions about Isaac paint him as a potential 2-gap tweener that doesn't win enough at the point of attack to merit a higher draft rank. He has flashed the ability to use his length to ground himself against the run but his lack of pass rush ability means that he doesn't have much of a role on 3rd downs. Here is his NFL.com scouting profile.

7:01

Keion Adams, Edge, Western Michigan - 6'2", 245 lbs. [Meeting at Visit] A small school star from the MAC who was compared to Arthur Moats by the NFL.com scouting profile (albeit with some character question marks as opposed to exclamation points). This goes to a Cincy Jungle interview. The CBS scouting profile notes some serious speed-to-power question marks. If that's coachable, Adams could be a Day 3 gem in hiding. Speaking of which, here are a Draft Diamonds interview and a somewhat better Packers-oriented article/interview.

7:01

Tashawn Bower, Edge, LSU - 6'5", 250 lbs. with 33-3/8" arms and 9-7/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] A late round pass rusher who has shown flashes but never forced his way onto the starting lineup. A typical end-of-the-draft pick who might develop into something surprisingly good after a year on the practice squad. He came off the field on 3rd downs, which is not a good sign. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile. This links to an article from the local New Orleans newspaper.

7:01

Samson Ebukam, Edge, Eastern Washington - 6'1", 248 lbs. [Meeting at Visit] Sam Ebukam sounds like he could be a player that could be worth a late-round flyer. Our own Nicholas.Martin wrote up a draft profile describing him as a pass rush specialist that could someday turn into more. His lack of size and the lower level of competition makes him a candidate for making a sharp rise at the combine if he can impress but problems with discipline against the run and other physical and technical deficiencies could keep him in the late rounds regardless. His CBS draft profile makes it sound like his major problems are his size and a lack of fine body control.

7:01

Peter Kalambayi, Edge, Stanford - 6'3", 245 lbs. Peter Kalambayi interviews well and played well at times. He rarely seems to be the first to make a hit and often ends up on the ground before the ball carrier. It may be he's not fast enough, it maybe he's not strong enough, but it doesn't sound like his skill set becomes anything more than a situational or depth. Take his scouting report with a grain of salt. 14.5 sacks is good but doesn't qualify him as a ‘sack machine.'

7:01

Lewis Neal, Edge, LSU - 6'2", 264 lbs. The NFL.com scouting profile has a late Day 3 grade based on the conclusion that he is a "marginal threat as a rusher off the edge." Ouch.

7:01

Pita Taumoepenu, ILB/Edge, Utah - 6'1", 243 lbs. with 32-3/8" arms and 9-7/8" hands. [Meeting at Visit] After moving to the US from Tonga, Pita started playing football in his senior year of high school. Very fast and good in coverage, but significantly undersized for an Edge player. He's another one who might do better if moved to the Mack, where speed and coverage skills would be even more important, with his pass rushing prowess serving as a bonus. There is a brief scouting profile in this article (spot #51). This guy showed some good explosiveness as a pass rusher. This CBS article is on point. This Fanpost from our own Igloojoe amounts to a highlight film of different gifs. Don't get too excited, though. His workout numbers at the Utah pro day were notably poor.

7:01

Treston DeCoud ("day-COO"), S, Oregon St. - 6'2", 206 lbs. with long 33" arms and 9-1/4" hands. A college Corner who ran slowly enough (4.62), tested middling enough, and looked stiff enough to force his future into the center field Free Safety role. That said, his coverage skills, tackling, and football IQ are good enough to make that a viable idea. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile.

7:01

Montae Nicholson, S, Michigan St. - 6'2", 212 lbs. 33-3/8" arms with 9-1/2" hands [Meeting at the Combine & Visit] A height/weight/speed prospect with relatively poor tape for coming out of such a good program. He can really run, and he's certainly willing to hit, but he's projected as more of a box safety because of C.O.D. concerns. This goes to the NFL.com scouting profile. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins ends with an upbeat Round 6 grade. Here is the PFF scouting profile. This thoughtful Chiefs-oriented scouting profile suggests that Nicholson is a potential diamond in the rough who might really blossom with some professional coaching.

7:01

Joshua Holsey, CB, Auburn - 5'11" 198 lbs. - Per our own Igloojoe, king of late round prospect hunting: "Joshua Holsey is going to be a very intriguing storyline to watch going into the 2017 draft. An extremely talented corner, Holsey has one major red flag, except that flag has popped up twice. He's torn the same ACL twice in his college career at Auburn. Despite that, some people believe that he might be a great value at his discounted price, due to Holsey holding his own against the Ole Miss receiving corps and, specifically, when he was matched up against Mike Williams of Clemson."

7:01

Ryan Lewis, CB, Pitt - 6'0", 200 lbs. [Meeting at Visit] A local boy who's a legitimate late round flier. The 4.32 and 4.35 dashes discussed in this scouting profile about his pro day raised some serious eyebrows! The NFL.com scouting profile describes a very undeveloped athletic talent with all the desired measurables, who basically needs to be taught how to play the position.

7:01

Seth Russell, QB, Baylor - 6'3" 213 lbs. with 32-1/4" arms and 9-5/8" hands. From our own Igloojoe: "Seth Russell is a mystery wrapped in an enigma. He has all the tools a scout can dream off, good size, great athleticism, big arm, but hasn't put it together in a likeable package. He's been injured, he's been babied, he's been off, and these downsides have dropped far lower than expected in a weak batch of mid tier QB's. NFL.com sees him as possible exception to Baylor's struggles at producing NFL QB's, while CBS simply sees him as the next in line. In the end, the NFL hates enigmas, and Russell's draft stock is really low for a player with the traits that he has."

7:01

Elijah McGuire, RB, UL Lafayette - 5'10", 214 lbs. with 31" arms and 9" hands. Athletic one cut runner with a good wiggle on the approach to the line. He has some limited experience as a punt returner and has the ability to split out and play as a receiver. Good speed, pass catching, and acceleration but has trouble breaking tackles. He has some injury concerns as well as some struggles with vision that raise questions about his ability at a higher level. Here is his NFL.com scouting profile.

7:01

Stanley "Boom" Williams, RB, Kentucky - 5'7" 190 lbs. with 30" arms and 8-5/8" hands. A scat back with decent speed, exceptional change of direction, and one of the best nicknames in college sports. The big red flag is that he actually plays smaller than his size, more or less avoiding contact wherever he can. At least that's how the NFL.com scouting profile sees it. This scouting profile from Matt Waldman views things similarly, but in a more nuanced and helpful way. This article compares him to more successful Size XS talents such as Sproles, Dion Lewis, and Dexter McCluster. This goes to a brief scouting profile from a Bills POV, which ends with a Round 7 grade. Here is a more positive article from Cincy Jungle, which views Williams as the "most underrated" RB in the draft. There is a brief Steelers-oriented scouting profile at page 11 of 11 in this Bleacher Report article.

7:01

Billy Brown, WR/TE, Shepherd - 6'4", 255 lbs. with 33" arms and 10-3/8" hands. He looks like a brilliant "Move TE" who has always played WR. The question is whether he is willing to block. Mike Mayock's Combine comment that he "desperately wants to be a WR" could indicate the wrong result. If so, Billy Brown could be a real find late on Day 3. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile.

7:01

Kenny Golladay, WR, Northern Illinois - 6'4", 218 lbs. with 32" arms and 9-3/4" hands. [Meeting at Visit] A late round height/weight/speed prospect who was brought in for a visit. Kind of like "Justin Hunter Lite" with really good hands. The NFL.com scouting profile praises the talent and potential while noting that he has many flaws that need to be solved. This scouting profile from our sister site for the Giants centers on the physical attributes web graph. The PFF scouting profile has special praise for his excellent hands. Here is a Rams-oriented scouting profile. This scouting report emphasizes the "sky high potential" and the near total need for good coaching to get him there. Here is a scouting profile from our sister site for the Redskins. This set of WR scouting profiles from our sister site for the Rams includes one on Golladay.

7:01

Kevin Snead, WR, Carson Newman - 6'0", 190 lbs. Made it onto the Board after our own Nick Martin picked him in Round 7 of his final mock. The NFL.com scouting profile makes for an interesting read: "possesses legitimate world-class speed that could make him the fastest man in the league the day he sets foot in an NFL camp" but has literally played no more than five games of football and knows absolutely nothing about the position.

7:01

Greg Ward, WR, Houston - 5'11", 186 lbs. with 31-1/8" arms and 9-7/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] A typical Steeler target for deep in Day 3, Ward came to Houston as a WR but evolved into the team's dual-threat Quarterback. He lacks the physical "stuff" to play QB in the pros, however, so he is being considered in his original position - just like a certain Georgia QB named Ward back in the day. The NFL.com scouting profile is brief, but includes praise of his speed, shiftiness, toughness and football IQ. This local article from Houston emphasizes his sterling character and leadership. This nice article from the Houston Chronicle ends on a comparison to Antwaan Randle-El and Tavon Austin, but is more interesting for the depth of background.

7:16

Austin Calitro, Edge, Villanova - 6'0", 250 lbs. [Meeting at the Shrine Game] Currently not on most draft sites radar. He was one of two defenders that the Steelers met with at the East/West game. You can see his highlight video on this linked BTSC article.

7:16

Ken Ekanem, Edge, Va. Tech - 6'3", 257 lbs. with 32" arms and 10-1/2" hands. Ken might provide some late round padding as an outside linebacker. More likely a practice squad player or special teams contributor, going by his stats. A poor showing at the Combine didn't help. Check out his highlight film and see if you agree that his speed is there when he's playing well, but he needs to be consistently fast and he needs polish. Good candidate for a small combine bump.

7:16

Garrett Sickels, Edge, Penn State - 6'3", 261 lbs. with 32-1/8" arms and 9-1/2" hands. First impression is that he's underrated. It's hard to see a lot from him, because he doesn't get a lot of coverage except from the local press. That being said, he put up some decent stats, performed on a good team against good teams, and his highlight reel (took me three tries to find it) looks pretty good. Let's see how his combine numbers are before assuming he will even get drafted, but from the little I've seen, he's undersized, but plays with a big heart. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile, which describes a player with good bend but poor explosiveness and strength.

7:16

Connor Harris, ILB, Lindenwood - 5'11", 242 lbs with 30-1/8" arms and 9-3/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Think of Tyler Matakevich. Add a small bit of athleticism. Subtract some level of competition. You now have Connor Harris. He'd rank 2-3 rounds higher if he wasn't a pure Buck and the team didn't already have depth at that spot. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile.

7:16

Damarius Travis, S, Minnesota - 6'1", 206 lbs. 31-1/4" arms with 9" hands. [Meeting at the Shrine Game] Another close to FA prospect that was met with at the East/West game. Position flexibility could be a boon to him. His NFL.com scouting profile is a little sparse.

7:16

CJ Beathard, QB, Iowa - 6'2" 219 lbs. with 30-5/8" arms and 9-3/8" hands. [Meeting at the Combine] Interesting factoid of the day: C.J. Beathard is the grandson of ex-Chargers GM Bobby Beathard. Is that the same as growing up in a coaching household? Per our own Igloojoe: "CJ Beathard is a pro style QB with an adequate arm and lots of tape. He can make most NFL throws and has sneaky athleticism. As pointed out in this NFL.com draft profile, Beathard struggles with pressure and accuracy. His mental game, even with playing in a pro style offense, is below the curve. His performance in the senior bowl was at best average, but fairly unimpressive. Beathard has a low ceiling in the NFL, but could be a solid backup/journeyman in time." The PFF scouting profile includes the interesting point that Beathard's stats were crippled by receivers with the 3rd-highest drop rate in CFB. Here is a brief, Chiefs-oriented scouting profile. This goes to a video scouting profile from Michael Vick's fan site.

7:16

Wes Lunt, QB, Illinois - 6'5", 220 lbs. Per our own Igloojoe: Wes Lunt is a big armed passer coming out of a struggling program. He can hit every throw on the field, but struggles with consistency. He has all the traits that NFL teams want but has a very concerning lack of production, as this CBS article points out. While ranked as a UDFA after the season ended by most sites, he did stand out at the shrine game, which may have raised his stock into the draftable range. The former four star product has always been seen as a QB on the edge of breaking out, but never has. In the end, he may be worth a late round flier.

7:16

Jason Croom, TE, Tennessee - 6'4-1/8", 243 lbs. [Meeting at Visit] Winning the MVP at the little-known Tropical Bowl all star game go Mr. Croom on quite a few radars, including Pittsburgh's. This interview at his pro day will give you a basic feeling for the young man. Here is a written interview. He spent most of his career as an oversized receiver before finally converting to TE in 2016, which got him on the field but with moderate success since he had to learn the position. Very, very raw but with some intriguing physical tools.

7:16

Jahad Thomas, RB, Temple - 5' 10", 190 lbs. with 30-1/8" arms and 9" hands. A scat back who is an excellent receiver and, according to Mike Mayock, an "edge" to his running. He might become a decent 3rd down back but probably not an improvement on Toussaint. Here is the NFL.com scouting profile.

7:16

Lenard Tillery, RB, Southern - 5'10" 200 lbs. - Per Igloojoe, that endless source of late round research: "A lot of people have heard of Tarik Cohen out of the FCS, but another late round back to keep an eye on is Lenard Tillery. Tillery is an explosive back, with fairly good speed, and is also a good kick returner for the Jaguars. At Southern, Tillery became the SWAC's all time leading rusher after walking on. He was named as a standout out at the NFLPA Shrine game by the Browns 247 sports site. Here's some game film and highlights of him."

Current Depth and Developmental Players

Why draft what you already have? Here are the lesser-known players that are waiting to compete with this year's incoming draft class.

Info

Pos.

Tyson Alualu, DE - 6'3", 304 lbs. Never lived up to being picked at 1:10 but is a versatile DL that should get a rotational role.

DE

Johnny Maxey, DE - 6'5", 283 lbs. A small school rookie who made the 53 due to Heyward's injury. Looked okay in limited time.

DE

L.J. Fort, LB - 6'0", 232 lbs. Backup at the heavily contested ILB position.

ILB

Jacob Hagen, FS - 6'3", 205 lbs.

S

Coty Sensabaugh, CB - 5'11", 187 lbs. Depth to shore up the slot spot. Had a decent amount of snaps with the Giants last year.

CB

Al-hajj Shabazz, CB - 6'2", 200 lbs. Wonderful size, no? There may be something here. Shabazz spent 2016 on the Steelers 53 - mostly inactive on game days, but protected nevertheless from getting poached off the practice squad. The "word on the street" is that he's maturing toward being an adequate backup on the boundary who can match up against Size XL receivers and Move TE's, but may lack the quickness to take on the sneaky types of slot receiver.

CB

B.J. Finney, C/G - 6'4", 318 lbs. Looked awesome as a backup Guard. Not so much as a Center, though that was his position in college and we ought to expect that he'll "get it" there too, eventually

OL

Jerald Hawkins, OT - 6'6", 305 lbs. The reports out of training camp were sensational until he suffered a convenient season ending injury that let the Steelers put him on IR for the equivalent of a redshirt rookie year.

OL

Keavon Milton, OT - 6'4", 320 lbs. Moved to tackle from TE by the Browns before the Steelers picked him up.

OL

Xavier Grimble, TE - 6'4", 261 lbs. The #3 guy in 2016. A fine pass catcher but not much of a blocker.

TE

Ray Hamilton, TE - 6'4", 262 lbs.

TE

David Johnson, TE - 6'2", 260 lbs. The team's blocking TE. Just signed to a 2-year deal despite his very occasional use.

TE

Brandon Brown-Dukes, RB - 5'8", 200 lbs.

RB

Kniles Davis, RB - 5'11", 227 lbs. Doubles as KR and RB depth.

RB

Gus Johnson, RB - 5'11", 215 lbs.

RB

Justin Hunter, WR - 6'4", 203 lbs. Never really put his size and athleticism together. Still, 12 touchdowns and 16.7 YPR demonstrates some redzone and deep threat potential.

WR

The Ain't Gonna Happen List

NOTE: This list isn't meant as a "garbage slot" for players who aren't worthy of an exalted spot on the Steelers roster. Most of the following prospects are more like Tiffany window jewels that the Steelers lack the draft-capital to buy at a proper price. Or to look at it another way, these are the players who, if they fall far enough to be worth the pick for Pittsburgh, would be worth more yet as trade bait that would net a premium price from a team with greater needs at his position. Plus it's just plain silly (and a little offensive) to give these guys a Steelers-specific grade that is so much lower than where they should get picked.

Name, Rank & Serial No.

Pos.

Mike Williams, WR, Clemson - 6'3", 225 lbs. A surefire Round 1 pick. The complete "big receiver".

WR

Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan - 6'3", 213 lbs. A strong WR with a nose for the end zone. Consistently ranked as a top 2 WR in the draft.

WR

Taywan Taylor, WR, Western Kentucky - 5'11", 198 lbs. With 32-3/8" arms and 8-7/8" hands. A potentially great slot receiver from a small school, who toasted the Alabama secondary when they played. Ain't Gonna Happen because he is a slot guy and the Steelers are loaded at that position.

WR

Garett Bolles, OL, Utah - 6'5", 300 lbs. One of the year's best guards. There's no way to justify a pick at the level he's likely to go.

OL

Pat Elflein, OL, Ohio State - 6'3", 300 lbs. The year's best center. Ain't Gonna Happen.

OL

Dan Feeney, OL, Indiana - 6'4", 304 lbs. A fine guard prospect. Ain't Gonna Happen.

OL

Dorian Johnson, OL, Pitt - 6'5", 315 lbs. One of the year's best guards. Ain't Gonna Happen.

OL

Forest Lamp, OL, Western Kentucky - 6'4", 305 lbs. One of the year's best guards. There's no way to justify a pick at the level he's likely to go.

OL

Ryan Ramczyk, T, Wisconsin - 6'6", 314 lbs. The Steelers had a stellar season at OL and teams will likely be looking at Ramczyk early.

OL

Cam Robinson, T, Alabama - 6'6", 326 lbs. One of the year's best offensive tackles. There's no way to justify a pick at the level he's likely to go.

OL

Reuben Foster, ILB, Alabama - 6'1", 236 lbs. Reuben Foster is listed in the top 10 for some teams and is at a position that is currently occupied by Ryan Shazier and Vince Williams. We aren't trading up and he's not falling all the way to the end of Round 1.

ILB

Caleb Brantley, DL, Florida - 6'2", 314 lbs. Javon Hargrave playing at an SEC powerhouse. Ain't Gonna Happen.

DL

Malik McDowell, DL, Michigan State - 6'6", 276 lbs. Perhaps the most explosive lineman in the draft, with questions about his motor and dedication. If the Steelers had use for a starting DE he would be ideal. But they don't.

DL

Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State - 5'11", 213 lbs. An awesome talent with some troubling character issues ranging from an accusation that he punched a girl (tried on misdemeanor battery and found not guilty) to another one that he chained three pit bull puppies out in the rain. A classic cut-and-slasher, Cook Ain't Gonna Happen because he'd only see the field when Bell came off.

RB

Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU - 6'1", 230 lbs. He's got it all. If Leveon Bell got hit by a meteor, this would be the dream pick. But until that happens he's not a good fit - Fournette and Bell would have to share carries rather than being on the field at the same time, and that Ain't Gonna Happen.

RB