The Pittsburgh Steelers are barreling towards the NFL Draft. Sure, I’m positive this team will make more free agent moves before players start coming off of draft boards, but until they make those moves the roster has obvious gaps to fill. Below is my opinion are the most important positions to upgrade via the draft. Keep in mind, the Steelers are one move away from completely altering this board at any given moment.
*Disclaimer: I did not include inside linebacker on this ranking, because the position already has too many players on the roster. It can be included if the Steelers were to release a player, but I just cannot see that happening, at least anytime soon.
7. Running Back
I have been a firm believer that Najee Harris needs a running mate all offseason. The Steelers do not have a proper backup running back behind him, and, considering the amount of touches he will get this year, it’s almost impossible to expect him not to miss any playing time with injury. The team needs to get the youngster someone that can spell him for drives while not completely slowing down the offense. They also need a player who can start a game or two and find some level of success. The move is not necessary, but it is a luxury with a good return.
6. Defensive Line
If it’s true that Stephon Tuitt and Tyson Alualu are back healthy for the 2022 season, then there is no reason to worry about the starters on this defensive line. The one thing to keep in the back of our minds however is this is still a unit who is getting long in the tooth. While it is nice to have Isaiahh Loudermilk and Montravius Adams in the fold, I still don’t think it is enough to transition this line into the future. There’s nothing wrong with adding for the future here.
At the time of writing, Ahkello Witherspoon is still not technically under contract with the Pittsburgh Steelers. There is a massive hole on this roster, but even having him in the mix doesn’t change the need to upgrade at corner. The Steelers are in a division featuring wide receivers such as Ja’Marr Chase, Tee Higgins, Tyler Boyd, Hollywood Brown, and Amari Cooper, and I’m not sure there’s anyone on the Steelers capable of limiting this amount of talent consistently. Upgrading the secondary is a must for this team.
4. Offensive Line
After the signings of Mason Cole and James Daniel, plus the re-signing of Chuks Okorafor, I’m not sure the Steelers have any urgency to draft an offensive lineman. It would be nice if they could add some more depth to tackle and push the starters on the outside. I still want this group to be upgraded, so fingers crossed the team doesn’t think this position is fully accounted for.
This truly is the wild card position. I hesitated to even include quarterback on this list, but considering how likely it is for this team to use their first round pick on a developmental quarterback I felt no other option but to put the most important position in all of sport on this list. The Steelers don’t necessarily need to add a quarterback this year, but I think the organization wants to have a plan in place to transition into the future. Like I said, I fully expect one of these top prospects to end up in black and gold with the 20th overall pick.
2. Wide Receiver
If I was a betting man, after the Steelers go quarterback in the first round I believe they go receiver in the second. This roster really only has two NFL caliber receivers on the roster in Chase Claypool and Diontae Johnson. Following that duo would be Anthony Miller, who only had one reception last year, and Cody White, who is a fringe player at best. Simply put, the Steelers must add at least two, but probably three, receivers over the coming weeks. One of them will certainly come via the draft and I anticipate at least two being rookies.
I mean could it be anything else? The Steelers simply do not have a strong safety on the roster. I do expect that to change anytime now. But until it does, this is the glaring and obvious hole the Steelers must fill. There is absolutely no way Miles Killebrew, or some other random defensive back, will be starting beside Minkah Fitzpatrick in 2022. And while I beg this team to sign a big name player at safety, if they don’t they sure better draft one.
But what do you think? What does your Steelers draft rankings look like? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.