Over the past few days I’ve been digging into a few reasons to love or hate the Steelers design class (links below). But if we’re being honest, before they even snap a snap, we as fans should be cautiously optimistic. Even if they hit all nine of their picks, it would be very likely that the late round guys won’t reach their potential until a few years later. With that said, here’s a moderate look at the Steelers 2021 Draft class.
It’s an undeniable fact that the Steelers have removed the greatest weaknesses in this roster. Whether these players can reach this potential will be answered in a few months / years, but the Steelers have added a skill player at each of their biggest question mark positions.
Even before the training camp, Najee Harris will be the backward bell cow, Pat Freiermuth will be the tightest end number 2, Kendrick Green will have a shot as the starting center for the first day and Pressley Harvin III as the punter. Dan Moore Jr., Buddy Johnson, Quincy Roche, Isaiahh Loudermilk and Tre Norwood will develop past them as backups and one day crack the grid. Untapped potential is the name of the design game, and it is up to the Steelers trainers to turn those lumps of coal into diamonds.
The Steelers almost always provide all of their newbies as backups and, if at all possible, keep them as backups until their second season. This year, given the number of holes on the team, they have no choice but to start a number of newbies. That is a great pressure to burden these children. Hopefully they will live up to the moment and not let it crush you.
Outside linebackers, corner and safety are an injury away from a disastrous hole for the Pittsburgh Steelers. If they are wise, they will move in some cash to bring in some veteran backups to round out these positions. But right now the guys in these positions can’t even afford to rest during the game.
This design class has one of the highest caps when it comes to total potential. No matter what these kids do in their first year, I’d bet they get more done in their sophomore year.
Sure, it’s easy to say the Steelers are blowing some players off. But the Pittsburgh Steelers know who they want, and they don’t mess around when it comes to designing them. You can tell by how quickly the Steelers submitted their draft cards when it was their turn. Kevin Colbert and his company didn’t mess around, and the Steelers got what they wanted.
At the end of the day, the Pittsburgh Ward added nine outstanding people. Top to bottom, these people are well spoken, work hard, and devote themselves to the less fortunate. Beyond the actual game, these players made the city of Pittsburgh a better place.
The Steelers never really made the big sexy deal, nor did they make a really surprising choice or make a splash purchase. What if you followed this team a long time, you knew it wasn’t going to happen. In business terms, this was a draft that kept the statistics quo.
This can be a dangerous game. On the one hand, if you draw well, you will keep candidate status forever. On the flip side, if you never fully commit to rebuilding and misfiring on draft picks, you could be putting yourself in the hole for a few extra seasons. Fortunately, this team has strong foundations but needs to keep facing the players, especially when the time comes to find Ben Roethlisberger’s successor.
No ifs and buts, the Steelers are a better football team than they were two weeks ago. They added talent, what they do with that talent is the fun part, but on paper this team is in a better place now,
But what do you think Which side of the argument are you on (love, hate, business as usual)? Let us know what you think in the comments below.