With about two weeks to go before the 2022 NFL Draft, I finally got around to doing important pre-draft research, such as having the Pro football Network Mock Draft Simulator make the Steelers first-round draft choice for me.
I did this all throughout the day on Wednesday—just the first round because that’s the only fun one—and I was a little shocked at the results.
What were the results, you ask? The Pro Football Network Mock Draft Simulator seems to want the Steelers to draft a receiver in the first round (20th, overall). I thought I was just going nuts, at first. After all, if the Steelers aren’t selecting a quarterback in the first round, surely, they’re taking Iowa’s Tyler Linderbaum or Georgia’s Jordan Davis, right?
This was when I decided to do 10 final first-round mock draft simulations and record my results for you, the concerned Steelers mock draft consumer.
I don’t know what camp you reside in, but if you’re in the camp of “Anyone But a Receiver,” I’m afraid I’ve got some bad news.
In 10 simulations—quite the sample size—the Steelers selected a receiver in the first round three times, starting with The Ohio State’s Chris Olave, followed by USC’s Drake London.
If you’re on Team Cornerback, you might be happy to know that Andrew Booth from Clemson was the third first-round mocked player, while Washington’s Trent McDuffie was the Steelers’ seventh first-round mocked player.
How do you feel about Trevor Penning, an offensive tackle from Northern Iowa and another Steelers’ fan pre-draft crush? If you’ve also been crushin’ on the idea of Pittsburgh selecting Penning with the 20th pick, you might be happy to know that he was the only player to be mocked to the Steelers twice in my exercise—the fourth and eighth first-round simulations.
Obviously, the position of quarterback made an appearance, and the simulator had the Steelers taking Pitt’s Kenny Pickett in the fifth first-round simulation and Ole Miss’s Matt Corral in the 10th and final first-round mock.
Do you hate poor draft value? Of course, you do. This is why you might hate the fact that Michigan’s Daxton Hill, a poor man’s Kyle Hamilton, was the first-round pick in the ninth simulation.
That only leaves one final simulation to discuss. Who was it? The headline should have given you a clue, but in case it didn’t, I will inform you that Garrett Wilson, wide receiver, The Ohio State University, was the third wide-out mocked to the Steelers in the first round by the Pro Football Network Mock Draft Simulator.
I guess none of this should come as a total shock, considering the Steelers just lost three receivers in free agency—JuJu Smith-Schuster, James Washington and Ray-Ray McCloud—and there are a lot of fine prospects in this year’s draft class—in addition to Wilson, Olave and London, Alabama’s Jameson Williams and Arkansas’s Treylon Burks seem to offer great first-round value.
What does this all mean? Is the Pro Football Network Mock Draft Simulator broken, or is it on to something that should be quite obvious to the rest of us?