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Insider Only Steelers to host Mack, Wood and Vasquez this week

The Pittsburgh will host three offensive linemen on Sunday – Tuesday. At the top of the Steelers wishlist in the first round is Cal’s Alex Mack. The Steelers had three representatives at Cal’s pro day and Ed Thompson reports, Mack will be in Pittsburgh for a visit on Sunday
On Monday the Steelers will hold a private workout for Louisville center Eric Wood. Wood has been a player of interest since the combine, where the Steelers met with Wood
On Tuesday the Steelers will be busy again hosting another offensive lineman. As we reported on Wednesday, Texas Tech guard Louis Vasquez will be in Pittsburgh for a visit on April 7th.
Scouting Reports

Alex Mack – Center, California
6’4″, 316 lbs,
Projection: Late first Round
Will Visit the Steelers on Sunday-Monday
Strengths: The top rated center on the board. Has Ideal size for a center in the NFL and has the aggressiveness and physicality to go along with a nasty killer instinct that scouts love. Very strong, powerful and is a hard worker off the field. He is considered a gym rat. According to many scouting reports, Mack is regarded as a great technician who understands and angles and leverage. Mack has excellent technique and football intelligence. Mack has a lot of upside
Weaknesses: Scouting reports claim Mack doesn’t have good balance and his arms are shorter than they should be for a player his size. Needs to control his aggressiveness as he gets too aggressive at times.
Awards
The Draddy Trophy, which is also known as the “Academic Heisman” which is given to the nation’s top scholar athlete.
The Morris Trophy which is given to the Pac-10’s top offensive lineman as voted on by the defensive linemen two years in a row.
Three time first team All-Pac 10, Four time academic All-Pac 10
Eric Wood, Center, Louisville
6’4″, 310 lbs
Projection: Round 2
Steelers will host Wood for a private workout on Monday
Strengths: Just like Alex Mack, Wood has very good size and bulk for a center. Lack of side has been a problem with the Steelers interior line the past couple seasons which makes Wood attractive. Wood is very physical, strong and plays with a nasty edge. Wood is more athletic than Mack as he has the ability to play guard. Quick and agile and can pull. Has good football intelligence.
Weaknesses: Is a suspect pass blocker and struggles with big defensive tackles in the running game. Many scouting reports see his upside as limited and he needs some coaching to work on his foot work and technique.
Awards
Was named All-Big East three times (2nd Team in 2006 and 1st Team in both 2007 and 2008)
Also earned Academic All-Big East accolades
Louis Vasquez, Guard, Texas Tech
6’4″3/4, 335 lbs
Projection: 4th round
Steelers will host Vasquez on Tuesday
Strengths: has excellent size and bulk and is a very good run blocker. At the combine, the Texas Tech guard lifted the required 225 pounds 39 times, five more than BYU’s Travis Bright and Juan Garcia of Washington. It was the fifth most reps by an offensive lineman at the combine since 2000. His stock right now is seen as a 4th round selection but could rise to the late third round.
Weaknesses: The concerns with Vasquez is his conditioning as he is not seen as a good athlete but is the kind of player with his size and stregth that is suited for a power running game. Is not considered a good technician. Vasquez is a project but has the ability to be a very good power run blocker in the NFL, if he continues to develop.
Analysis: Internal mock drafts have Mack off the board in the first round when the Steelers draft at 32. Right now he is seen as being drafted in 25-32 selections in the first round. If Mack is on the board at 32, he will be the Steelers pick. The likely scenario is the Steelers will have to move up a few picks to nab Mack.
Louisville center Eric Wood would be a reach at 32 but the issue the Steelers have is he won’t be around in the late second round. His stock right now is seen as a early second round selection with the Cleveland Browns showing significant interest.

About The Author

William DePaoli

TIOPS Insider

William DePaoli is the President/Founder of Inside Pittsburgh Sports LLC and can be reached at wdepaoli@insidepittsburghsports.com

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