LATEST STEELERS DRAFT CHATTER
The NFL draft is just two days away and chatter is heating up on the Steelers going offensive line with the 24th overall pick.
The Steelers have drafted an offensive lineman the past two years in either round 1 or round 2, and there’s a distinct possibility the team goes in that direction this week.
Head coach Mike Tomlin has long sought a potential dominant guard to team next to Maurkice Pouncey for the next several years, which had Tomlin very interested in trading up for Pouncey’s twin brother Mike Pouncey last April if Pouncey were to fall into the 20’s.
Ramon Foster has emerged as a dependable starting right guard but the Steelers have a big need at left guard. Therefore, the Steelers are going into Thursday’s first round with guard very much on their radar and even the tackle position where the team has strong interest in Mississippi’s Bobby Massie who the Steelers regard as a first round prospect.
At the guard position, it’s not an elite group but two names connected to the Steelers at No. 24 is Georgia guard Cordy Glenn (6-5, 345) and Wisconsin’s Kevin Zeitler (6-4, 315).
Glenn is a massive lineman who is agile for a big man and played left tackle in college but struggles against speed pass rushers, which has many teams including the Steelers looking at him as a guard, where scouts feel will be the best fit for him in the NFL. Glenn is powerful and some evaluators believe could be a pro bowl player inside and be a dominant guard in a power man blocking scheme.
Zeitler is an excellent run blocker who is strong at the point of attack and comes from a dominant run blocking team in college at Wisconsin. According to draft statistics, Zeitler led college football with 142 knockdowns and 33 blocks that resulted in touchdowns. Wisconsin averaged 467 yards per game in 2011, including 237 on the ground. The Steelers are said to like Zeitler a lot.
A sleeper to keep an eye on if the Steelers move back is Midwestern State’s Amini Silatolu who the Steelers are said to be high on. Silatolu comes from a small school which has him regarded as a second round prospect by many, but there’s a ton of intrigue surrounding his ability and some scouts and teams are said to have him neck and neck with Glenn and Zeitler or even rated higher than the two.
Stanford’s David Decastro is the top rated guard in the draft.
One feeling around the league is that the Steelers are in prime position to move down in this draft and grab one of Massie, Glenn, Zeitler or even Silatolu.