For the first time in a long time it seems the Pittsburgh Steelers won’t have to list cornerback as a pressing need entering the offseason. With Artie Burns, Joe Haden, Mike Hilton, Cam Sutton and Brian Allen all returning, there isn’t a huge need for the team to add to the depth they currently have.
But it doesn’t mean the Steelers taking a dominant cornerback in Round 1 isn’t out of the question either.
28. Pittsburgh Steelers
The Pick: CB Carlton Davis, Auburn
In previous mock drafts, I’ve had the Pittsburgh Steelers going after a middle linebacker with this selection, but the board falls differently this time and a top cornerback is available instead. Plugging Carlton Davis in opposite Artie Burns would give Pittsburgh a fast young duo with a bright future.
Davis is more physical than Burns, especially in-phase with receivers, but both bring a swagger to the position that jumps off the screen. And because Burns is more finesse and speed and Davis is more strength and technique, they would pair well at cornerback while giving the Steelers a potential strength moving forward. If Joe Haden sticks around and can mentor the two, that would be all the better.
The main issue I have with this scenario is how the team would have a ridiculous number of cornerbacks on their roster. Some say you can’t have enough, but if William Gay and Coty Sensabaugh also return you have the following cornerbacks on the roster.:
Pittsburgh always selects draft picks based on Best Player Available (BPA), and not by positional need. With that thinking, this selection is possible, but highly unlikely. If the team decided to release/trade Haden, who has a hefty salary cap hit of $11,916,666 in 2018, you could understand the pick here, but they would be going with a very young, and inexperienced, cornerback depth chart heading into 2018. Not necessarily a horrible thing, but also not something you want a Super Bowl contending team to deal with.
I doubt the Steelers take a cornerback in Round 1 of the NFL Draft, but you just never know what is going to happen between now and then. At this time, anything is possible.
What do you think about the pick? Also, what do you think about the prospect, and position, being charted to Pittsburgh? Let us know in the comment section below!