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2019 NFL Draft: Grading the Steelers fourth round pick of Benny Snell Jr.

With the 122nd pick of the 2019 NFL Draft the Pittsburgh Steelers select Kentucky RB Benny Snell Jr.

NCAA Football: Kentucky at Tennessee Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

First and foremost, Benny Snell Jr. is a football player, plain and simple. Football is in his blood, considering his family pedigree. The son of a former NFL player, Snell is the definition of a workhorse running back. He is also a classic overachiever, after being told throughout his college career that he was too small, slow, and not athletic enough to be successful lead back in a Power 5 conference. He has made a living proving the doubters wrong, as evident by his third team AP All American and All SEC honors. Now he is a fourth round selection in the NFL Draft. I hate to tell him, but now the doubters start popping up all over again.

So what's not to love? Benny Snell just lacks elite athleticism often associated with the position. He is not a quick twitch athlete. Benny ran a 4.66 40 and his explosion scores proved in line with his forty time. He doesn't possess breakaway speed and is often caught from behind in the open field. If Snell was a tick or two faster he would have been a much earlier selection, because the elite production is there.

Benny Snell Jr compares favorably to the Steelers own James Conner as a runner. Snell has superior balance and power. He looks for contact and runs through arm tackles regularly. Also similar to a young Conner coming out of college, Snell needs work on his pass receiving and pass protection abilities. Snell has displayed the work ethic throughout his career to get the job done, and I expect this challenge to be no different.

Now how to accurately and fairly grade this selection? Snell was projected to be a fifth or sixth round selection, so no real reach here. He projects in many evaluations to have a solid backup running back ceiling, but the young man has regularly exceeded expectations. Snell reportedly is a excellent teammate with strong character traits.

Sounds like a Pittsburgh Steelers type player to me. Therefore I am pleased to give this selection a grade of B.

Only time will tell, but I am not betting against the young man.

What grade do you give to this Steelers selection? Please vote in the attached poll and explain why in the comments section below.

Welcome to the Pittsburgh Steelers, Benny Snell Jr! From all of us at Steelers Nation!


What overall grade do you give the Pittsburgh Steelers fourth round selection?

This poll is closed

  • 25%
    A = Excellent selection
    (396 votes)
  • 37%
    B = Above average selection
    (573 votes)
  • 30%
    C = Solid pick
    (471 votes)
  • 5%
    D = Below average selection
    (88 votes)
  • 0%
    F = Terrible selection
    (13 votes)
1541 votes total Vote Now