Kevin Colbert leaves plenty of clues when it comes to who the Steelers first round pick will be. This team is not in the business of hiding their intentions when it comes to the draft. Here are some of the major factors to keep an eye on when trying to determine this team’s first round selection:
1. Colbert and Tomlin at the Pro-Day:
The Pittsburgh Steelers have not drafted a player in the first round without both these gentlemen having attended the Pro-Day in at least twenty years. If your mock draft has a player that didn’t have both, cross it off and start over. This is as certain a factor as any when it comes to Steelers first round picks.
2. Elite athlete:
This team stresses athleticism over all else in the first round. Since 2013 only two first round picks have registered below a 9.3 RAS score. Those players are Artie Burns, and Jarvis Jones. It just so happens those two are the worst selections in the Kevin Colbert era.
3. Position of need:
The Steelers often go into the draft with at least one glaring need. They will tell you all they want that this team will draft the best player available, but this simply isn’t true. Look no further than the Artie Burns selection for proof of that. Artie Burns: A cautionary tale
4. Eliminate the west coast:
Kevin Colbert has only selected two players in the first round from the PAC10 in his over twenty years of drafting for the Pittsburgh Steelers. It took a very special athlete like Troy Polamalu, and an absolute gift in David DeCastro falling to them for this to happen. In other words, it takes a very unusual set of circumstances for this team to draft a player west of say Texas. This year is not one of them.
When it comes to the Steelers first round pick, pay very close attention to things like Pro-Day dinners, combine meetings, and player visits. Kevin Colbert and company like to have had several opportunities to get to know their selections prior to the draft. https://www.si.com/college/cincinnati/news/desmond-ridder-dine-steelers-mike-tomlin-bearcats-pro-day
We have seen the Steelers go to great lengths to get to know every first round caliber quarterback in this draft. This, and the other factors mentioned earlier lead us to believe that quarterback will ultimately be the position selected in this first round. As for which one, we just have to continue to read the clues this team gives us to try to figure out the final decision.