Welcome to the Pittsburgh Steelers Big Board Series! Over the next few days I’ll be creating big boards for each round of the NFL Draft the Steelers have a pick in. I’ll then discuss these players, among other draft notes, on my podcast. You can find the Simon Shortt Podcast on Apple and Spotify. With that, let’s get to the Pittsburgh Steelers Big Board!
Similar to Round 2, we’ll be using breadcrumbs to try and find the Pittsburgh Steelers Big Board prospects for Round 3. We’ll use a mix of: who attended the Pro Days, if the prospects appeared in any All Star Games, Pre-Draft Interviews, and team need.
Below are the team personnel that were spotted at Pro Days by the Steelers Depot Team.
- Defensive Asst/LBs Coach – Brian Flores
- ILB Coach – Jerry Olsavsky
- Pro Scouting Coordinator (and potential next GM) – Brandon Hunt
- VP of Football & Business Administration (also potential next GM) – Omar Khan
General Manager Kevin Colbert and Head Coach Mike Tomlin appearing at a Pro Day will also be significant.
Below is the Pittsburgh Steelers Big Board – Round 3!
- 1. Channing Tindall LB, Georgia – an inside linebacker with good size, versatility, and tackling ability, Tindall could play alongside Devin Bush or Myles Jack for a year and develop into a starter. Attended Senior Bowl, and his Pro Day was attended by Colbert, Tomlin and Flores
- 2. Coby Bryant CB, Cincinatti – a long, rangy corner from Cincinatti, Bryant could be a playmaking outside corner for Pittsburgh right away. He has good size at 6’1, 195 pounds and is a versatile defender. Does need to improve as a tackler. Attended Senior Bowl, and his Pro Day was attended by Tomlin, Colbert, Hunt and Khan. Had dinner with Tomlin
- 3. Darrian Beavers LB, Cincinatti – a huge, thumping middle linebacker, Beavers stands 6’4 and weighs 255 pounds. Has versatility with experience as a safety so can drop and play zone. Excellent IQ and tackler to play the run. Attended Senior Bowl, Pro Day very well attended where Tomlin paid him a lot of attention
- 4. Nick Cross S, Maryland – Nick Cross is a developmental safety with all the tools. An athletic and physical specimen, Cross has been used all over the field. Considering Pittsburgh’s affinity for Maryland (Dino Tomlin, Matt Canada, four draft picks since 2016 including two safeties) I guarantee Cross is on their board. Brandon Hunt and an additional scout were at the Pro Day
- 5. Derion Kendrick CB, Georgia – a steady outside corner with experience in zone or man coverage. A willing tackler in the run game. Could do well on special teams with his size and tackling ability, with position to develop as a corner. Was at the Senior Bowl and had Tomlin, Colbert, and Flores at his Pro Day
- 6. Myjai Sanders EDGE, Cincinatti – Senior Bowl attendee and had dinner with Mike Tomlin at his Pro Day. Myjai Sanders has good size for a Pittsburgh edge rusher (6’5, 255 pounds). His combination of a quick first step and good hand usage would make him a good situational pass rusher as a rookie
- 7. Marcus Jones CB, Houston – Jones missed the Senior Bowl due to recovery from shoulder surgery, but has a pre-draft interview set with the Steelers. A productive and physical corner out of Houston, Jones could start on special teams (was a high-level return man in college) and develop into a starting corner. Had five INTs this past season
- 8. Brandon Smith LB, Penn State – Smith is a big and rangy prospect from Penn State, otherwise known as LBU (Linebacker University). He’s played as an inside linebacker and edge rusher so he could start as a rotational backup at both spots for Pittsburgh. His Pro Day was heavily scouted by Flores, Olsavsky, and other Steelers’ defensive coaches
- 9. Ed Ingram OL, LSU – Ingram is a versatile and athletic offensive guard from LSU. With experience at both left and right guard, he has the ability to play either spot effectively in a power run scheme. With enough athleticism to pull in either direction and get to the second level, he’d be a good fit for Pittsburgh. He was a Senior Bowl attendee and had Colbert and Tomlin at his Pro Day
- 10. Alec Pierce WR, Cincinatti – one more Cincinatti product here, so he obviously had a large amount of Steelers’ staff at his Pro Day. Pierce was a productive receiver at Cincinatti with great hands and excellent route running. Not a big YAC guy, but right now the Steelers need someone to get open and catch the ball. Pierce also tested off the charts at the combine. Was also at the Senior Bowl.
Notables Left Off
Two more wide receivers I considered were Calvin Austin III and Jalen Tolbert. But Austin III is a bit undersized and Tolbert is coming from a small school. Neither had significant interest from Pittsburgh at their Pro Days. Sam Williams, the edge rusher from Ole Miss, had his most productive season in 2021-22, but it was at 23/24 years old. He also has some legal issues and inconsistent play in his background. Rasheed Walker didn’t have enough eyes on him during his Pro Day. And neither Bryan Cook nor Jalyn Armour-Davis attended an All-Star Game.
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