Every mock draft you read, every twitter post, every talking head will tell the Pittsburgh Steelers are drafting a running back in the first round. https://www.nfl.com/news/charles-davis-2021-nfl-mock-draft-1-0-falcons-pick-justin-fields-to-succeed-matt
Makes sense right? This team ranked 29th in rushing in 2020, and now have lost their starter James Conner to free agency. Even at the team’s draft press conference yesterday, Kevin Colbert went out of his way to let everyone know that drafting a running back was a possibility. His direct quote was “I don’t think you can ever underestimate the value of a quality player at any position, and running back is no different.”
So that’s a wrap. This team will be selecting Najee Harris at twenty four. Put down your mock drafts, this one is a lock. Or is it?
The lead up to the NFL draft is often called the lying season, and with good reason. Team executives put out false information all the time during draft season. This year the Steelers may very well be guilty of this as well. Think about it for a minute. When have the Steelers ever been this easy to read when it comes to the draft? Did anybody see Artie Burns or Terrell Edmunds as the team’s first round pick? How about Chase Claypool last year, know one saw that coming. That’s because Pittsburgh is among the most tight lipped franchises in the entire league. Hearing all this chatter about running back should make us very skeptical.
It is entirely possible that Kevin Colbert wants the league to think the Steelers are drafting a running back, while they are planning to go in a completely different direction. Already rumors are swirling that teams like the Buffalo Bills are trying to trade up ahead of Pittsburgh to draft Travis Etienne. This is how it works this time of year. The smart general managers try to disguise their intentions instead of advertising them.
It is much more likely this team drafts an offensive lineman, edge rusher, or cornerback in the first round. We have said for weeks now that corner will be the best value at 24 for the Steelers. Steelers Mock Draft 3.0: The Post Pro-Day Edition
All the “so called” experts are telling you the Steelers are taking a running back in the first round. That’s exactly what Kevin Colbert wants everyone to think. When come time for Pittsburgh to select on Thursday there are going to be quite a few shocked people. We won’t be one of them.