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2021 NFL Mock Draft: The Steelers take an inside linebacker with their top pick

In the latest mock draft, the Steelers look to add another piece to the inside linebackers in the first round of the 2021 NFL draft.

TaxSlayer Gator Bowl - North Carolina State v Kentucky Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images

The 2021 NFL draft is now only 17 days away. With free agency winding down and all eyes on the upcoming NFL draft, the Steelers will have a lot of different draft scenarios which could shake out before making their first draft selection. Because the NFL combine will not be held, pro days are the best option to get player information. With the majority of these pro days concluded, it’s still difficult to gauge which players will move up draft boards while others fall.

When talking about mock drafts or NFL free agency, you have to first identify the team’s main needs for the offseason. At this point in free agency, there are some who would like to see the Steelers go with either offensive line or running back with their first-round pick. Others feel tight end or linebacker could be on top of the list. With the Steelers shaping their roster prior to April, their goal is usually to get in to position to draft the best player available rather than target a specific position. When it comes to what position the team will select with their first pick, it is certainly up for debate.

This week it continues to be difficult to find a mock draft which has the Steelers taking a player we have not already covered, therefore it takes looking at some other sources. In the latest mock draft by The New York Post, they have the Steelers taking an inside linebacker who some have them considering in round two while others have them passing with a better fir in a 4-3 defense. Since the Steelers could go in any number of directions with their first selection, it is important to look at all the possibilities presented by various mock draft outlets, regardless of how terrible they may appear.

Check out the Steelers 24th pick:

24. Pittsburgh Steelers | Jamin Davis | LB | Kenkucky| JR |

Even though the draft process has been going on for a while, there may be players some fans are not familiar with. If this is the case, here is a breakdown of Davis according to thedraftnetwork.com:

Jamin Davis projects as a WILL linebacker at the NFL level and appears to have the ceiling of an NFL starter. Davis is long, rangy, and explosive and that correlated to several big plays in the passing game throughout the course of Kentucky’s 2020 campaign. Davis exploded onto the scene in 2020 and wasted little time making the leap to the NFL, but his lack of high volume sample size as a featured player is cause for buyer beware. There’s plenty of untapped potential in Davis’ game and his length flashes to deconstruct blocks while he also showcases the processing power after the snap to duck under blocks and spill opposing ball-carriers into pursuit. But he has yet to master a feel of scraping through traffic and his overall quickness and confidence in decision-making leaves the door open for confident passers and ball-carriers to exploit small creates caused by his delay. Davis has very good range and long speed that will draw the attention of NFL decision-makers—as second-level speed is at a premium right now due to league trends.

Ideal Role: Developmental WILL linebacker.

Scheme Fit: 4-3.

For all you who are preparing yourself for the draft, what do you think of the selection? Would you be on board with the Steelers taking Davis with their first pick? Or do you feel the Steelers should look at one of the other inside linebackers who could be available? Personally, I thought the part of this mock draft which was covered looked pretty good, other than the Steelers selection. With linebacker Zaven Collins going the pick before the Steelers, I don’t see them taking a player at the same position who doesn’t seem to be nearly as good of a fit. Additionally, there were plenty of other quality players on the board where the Steelers would not need to reach for Davis. If the Steelers were the ones to think high enough of Davis to select him at 24, I would believe in the pick a little more. But when it comes to predicting the Steelers to make this selection, it’s not one I would expect.

As always, let us know your thoughts in the comment section below, and remember these mock drafts are merely speculation and caused to create discussion among the fan base.