Pittsburgh Steelers Mock Draft: Full 7-Round Predictions

Nick DeWittAnalyst IApril 16, 2012

Pittsburgh Steelers Mock Draft: Full 7-Round Predictions

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    The Pittsburgh Steelers could draft a player at any of three positions in the first round of this year's edition of the annual NFL draft and come up with a piece that could help immediately.

    It is one of the most talent-rich drafts in recent memory and is filled with great players in waiting.

    Here's a look at how all seven rounds of the draft might play out for the Steelers.

Round 1

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    Cordy Glenn, OG, Georgia

    The Steelers have addressed their offensive line with a pick in either the first or second round each of the last two seasons.

    While there's nothing that says this trend must continue, it makes sense here.

    I've also mocked Dont'a Hightower in this spot several times, and I still think he's a possibility.

    The team is, however, seemingly committed to giving Stevenson Sylvester a chance to be the starting inside linebacker opposite Lawrence Timmons.

    Since they have no such commitments at the guard spots and in fact often seem poised to find replacement guards, a player like Glenn makes a lot of sense here.

Round 2

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    Mike Martin, DT, Michigan

    The Steelers need to determine an exit strategy with Casey Hampton.

    They were able to reduce his cap number significantly for next season.

    It seems that 2012 will be his swan song as a Steeler, bringing to an end more than a decade of dominant play in the middle.

    Nobody knows what the team intends to do if Hampton isn't ready or can't make it through 2012 and what they plan to do beyond this coming season.

    Martin steps in here. He's had a solid career at Michigan, and he has the measurables that the Steelers look for. He looks like a player who could be a force up the middle in the same way Hampton has been.

Round 3

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    LaMichael James, RB, Oregon

    James is the kind of player that you call a "home run threat" in football.

    He can score every time he touches the football.

    He's also a very versatile player with blazing speed and quickness.

    He can catch the ball as well, making him a multi-dimensional weapon.

    He's a bit smallish, but that doesn't bother a team like the Steelers. Pittsburgh needs a back like this in their offense, especially if Todd Haley, the new coordinator, wants a Dexter McCluster-type guy on this team.

    James would be a great pairing with Isaac Redman, who seems to be in need of a pairing since the team cannot rely on Rashard Mendenhall and has nothing else but unproven and injury-prone players.

Round 4

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    Josh Kaddu, LB, Oregon

    Taking a linebacker is a rite of passage for the Steelers, especially under Mike Tomlin.

    Need or no need, they always grab one or two.

    Kaddu is a very underrated player who has the talent and potential to bloom into something really special.

    It seems he could find no better landing spot than in Pittsburgh with Keith Butler and Dick LeBeau, creators of several of the best linebackers in the NFL.

    Kaddu is an outside linebacker, but there's no real problem with that, because he may also be able to play on the inside. Even if he can't, it's nice insurance for a team that had their depth tested sorely last season.

Round 5

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    Omar Bolden, CB, Arizona State

    Bolden is a raw talent, but there's a lot there to work with.

    The Steelers aren't drafting to fill a need for a starter in 2012 or 2013, so they can afford to be a little more forward-thinking at this point in the draft.

    Bolden can make plays, and he has good speed and intelligence for the position. He will have plenty of time to learn the Steelers' intricate defense behind guys like Ike Taylor, Keenan Lewis, Cortez Allen and Curtis Brown.

    The Steelers should grab a corner at some point. They've lost William Gay and let Bryant McFadden go, so their depth is a bit thin right now.

Round 6

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    Case Keenum, QB, Houston

    The Steelers have no clear plan behind Ben Roethlisberger, but they need one.

    The stark reality of the team's elite passer is that his helter-skelter style of play causes injuries.

    He can play through just about anything, but there's usually a time each season where he has to sit for a game or two.

    That's where we have a bit of a problem. Charlie Batch and Byron Leftwich are free agents. The team signed accuracy-deprived Troy Smith early in the offseason, but I don't see him as anything but a potential No. 3.

    Drafting a guy like Keenum, who's a quality passer and athlete, and re-signing Batch or Leftwich to tutor him for a year is a great way to fix the whole situation.

Round 7

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    Blair Walsh, PK, Georgia

    The Steelers need to give Shaun Suisham some competition.

    Walsh in a guy who has excellent leg strength and accuracy, both things that Suisham struggles with regularly.

    This is a solid football move in a round where the team has four picks.

     

    Keith Tandy, CB, West Virginia

    The Steelers have already hosted Tandy, but he doesn't figure to factor into the draft until the late rounds. He would be another good boost to the team's depth chart and could blossom into a nice player because of his playmaking abilities.

     

    Adrien Cole, LB, Louisiana Tech

    The Steelers do have some depth concerns at linebacker, so taking a second one, especially a guy with experience on the inside, is certainly an appropriate way to spend a late choice.

    There have been some great gems in past drafts in this round at linebacker—Cole could be another of those.

     

    Lance Lewis, WR, East Carolina

    Taking a late flyer on a receiver isn't harmful, either, since the team has a fifth spot to fill now that Hines Ward has retired and Arnaz Battle has departed. A guy like Lewis is good competition for the rest of the players vying for that spot.