When the Pittsburgh Steelers lost their opening game of the 2011 season to the Baltimore Ravens by a score of 35-7, an immediate criticism was that the age of their defense had finally caught up with them.
After 15 games and a playoff berth last season, the Steelers had proven that age was not a problem. But they are aware that it will become a problem sooner or later, and they'll need to be prepared to address it.
One way they can address it is by drafting promising defenders and starting a gradual youth movement. A transition from the days of James Harrison and Troy Polamalu isn't something the Steelers need to do tomorrow, but it is something they'll need to do eventually.
Here are five defensive studs that the Steelers can't afford to miss out on in this year's draft.