After the 2018 NFL Draft concluded, fans across the NFL landscape were trying to find out the insider information on the newest additions to their favorite team. For the Pittsburgh Steelers, and their four offensive picks out of seven total selections, the befuddled fan base wanted to know if the picks were worth it. After all, there were glaring defensive needs which everyone thought needed addressed before any offensive players were selected.
At Pro Football Focus, they gave their opinion on the Steelers’ Oklahoma State duo of James Washington and Mason Rudolph. Take a look at their analysis, and thoughts, on the tandem who are now calling Pittsburgh home.
PICK NO. 60 JAMES WASHINGTON, WR, OKLAHOMA STATE
Head coach Mike Tomlin: “Similarly to JuJu (Smith-Schuster), we just loved his overall game, his physicality, his sure hands, his strong hands, his running ability after the catch. His resume speaks for itself, a Biletnikoff winner, we felt really fortunate for him to be available at this stage in the draft. [He’s an] ccomplished four-year guy with a four-year body of work. Equally exciting, a really solid young man, you know what you’re gonna get on a day-to-day basis, he’s gonna be an early contributor for us.”
PFF’s Take: Washington had all of five drops on 79 catchable passes this past season. His physicality really showed in the 1-on-1s at the Senior Bowl where he had the highest win rate of any receiver against press coverage.
PICK NO. 76 MASON RUDOLPH, QB, OKLAHOMA STATE
Tomlin: “Mason at that spot was just too good of a player to pass up for us, we’re excited about having an opportunity to get him … We moved up a couple of spots to secure him, really excited to watch those young people sort themselves out at the quarterback position, it’s a good thing to have too much talent.”
PFF’s Take: We had Rudolph as a first-round caliber player so the value here is fantastic. His college production was outstanding and he had three seasons grade out at 90.0 or better.
Whether you buy what PFF sells on a regular basis, both figuratively and literally, is not the point The point is after reading both Mike Tomlin’s comments, and PFF’s take, it is hard not to get excited about the newest offensive weapons added to the Pittsburgh arsenal.
No, Rudolph won’t be playing anytime soon, and the longer he has to develop under Ben Roethlisberger the better. But at the same time, if something were to happen with Roethlisberger, Rudolph could be the future of position and ready to stake his claim as the heir to the Steelers’ quarterback throne.
What do you think of the selections? Agree with PFF, or have your hesitations? Let us know in the comment section below!