All NFL teams have concluded their official pre-draft visits with the 2018 NFL Draft just over a week away. As most know, each team is allowed 30 official visits, with the exceptions of players who grew up or attended school within a proximity of the NFL franchise.
For the Pittsburgh Steelers, it has become clear the player the team reported visited, and the players who actually visited are two completely different things.
Leighton Vander Esch came in unannounced on a Saturday, when no media would be present, and on Tuesday Justin Reid of Stanford visited but wasn’t listed on the official report from the team.
Some call it gamesmanship, some call it paranoia, but either way you slice it the truth is the team simply doesn’t announce all of their 30 visits.
This was clearly evident recently when Mike Garafolo of the NFL Network reported Alabama safety Ronnie Harrison has a private meeting/workout with the Steelers:
Alabama S Ronnie Harrison (No. 38 prospect on @MoveTheSticks' Top 50) had private meetings/workouts with PIT, NYG, DET, TEN, JAX, MIN, CIN, CAR, SEA, HOU, NE, and PHI. Versatile player who should go Round 2.— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) April 17, 2018
The ending total for pre-draft visits, if you include Reid, ended with 22 visits, according to our BTSC Pre-Draft Visit Tracker. Teams don’t have to use all of their pre-draft visits, but it is rare a team like the Steelers doesn’t utilize as many visits as possible.
Why would a team not report their visits? First, they don’t have to. Also, they might not want to tip their hand regarding prospects they are interested in where rivals might want to take a player off the board before the Steelers pick.
Stay tuned to BTSC for the latest on these reports as the team continues to put the final touches on their pre-draft prep work done before the big event on the 26th.