Armchair GM

Steelers Bye Week 2020 Mock Draft, All Rounds. Yes, They Still Have Some Picks

October 16, 2019
9 minutes read
Steelers Bye Week 2020 Mock Draft, All Rounds. Yes, They Still Have Some Picks

One thing for sure, the Steelers brass WAY overestimated the quality of their wide receiving corps. James Washington hasn’t stepped up, Donte Moncrief has bombed out and Ryan Switzer and Johnny Holton are WR4s at best. Diontae Johnson is showing signs of being a good slot guy but Juju is the only WR1-WR2 and he needs help. The team also needs help at Offensive Tackle with the Chuks/Feiler/Banner combo being beyond mediocre.

Free Agency is a big factor with Free Safety Sean Davis and Outside Linebacker Bud Dupree both slated to be unrestricted FAs. The team also has weak backups on both sides of ball. Tight End was a bit of a concern but the Steelers addressed a glaring weakness by FINALLY getting rid of Xavier Grimble and bringing in the solid blocking and catching, Nick Vannett via trade. This Mock assumes the Steelers get a 3rd Round Compensatory Pick for Le’Veon Bell and also has a mock trade of Inside Linebacker Vince Williams who seems odd man out with the addition of Mark Barron and the emergence of Devin Bush.

Steelers 2020 Draft

1st Rd Traded for Safety – Minkah Fitzpatrick – This move alone makes the 2020 draft a success. Fitzpatrick brings the Steelers a bona fide starter at Free Safety with perennial Pro Bowl potential. Fitzpatrick also has great versatility and coverage ability. The Steelers are wisely respecting Minkah’s wishes to get established at a single position before having his versatility used to it’s maximum but that will be coming soon enough.

2nd Rd – WR/PR/KR – Jalen Reagor – TCU – 5’-11”, 205# – 4.35/40 – Reagor is not just a speed demon, he’s a crafty wide receiver who can make difficult catches. He runs, ‘I’m going to mess with your head’, routes with lots of jukes and deceptive movement. His routes stay precise, though. His hands are solid and he has no problem catching outside his frame but I did see a couple concentration drops on the game film I watched. Voted TCU MVP in 2018. That year he had 72 catches for 1061 yards at 14.7 yards per and 9 TDs. He also ran the ball, mostly on jet sweeps and end arounds having 13 carries for 170 yards at an eye popping 13.1 yards per and 2 TDs.

Reagor also contributed in the return game with 8 punt returns for 97 yards at a healthy 12.1 yard average and 4 kickoff returns for 121 yards at an impressive 30.3 yards per. It would be nice to have a return man who actually returns the ball and doesn’t spend all his time waving his hand in the air or kneeling.

3rd Rd (Comp for LvB) – OLB – Kenny Willeke – Michigan State – 6’-4”, 260# – 4.69/40 – Each year there is a player who NEEDS to be a Steeler. Willeke is this year’s player. His stat line doesn’t show how disruptive he is until you add in the QB hits. He’s a scrappy player with disruptive hands, good power and a burgeoning spin move. High motor player who will chase the play down wherever it goes. Draws double teams on crucial pass plays. Untested in pass coverage and doesn’t project to be a great at it. He also looks a little undersized taking on OTs. These factors will probably make him drop to this round but I think this kid has got ‘It’.

78 tackles with 20.5 for a loss, 8.0 sacks, 21 QB hits, 1 interception, 4 pass deflections, 1 fumble and 1 forced fumble in 2018. The Steelers need someone to challenge Bud Dupree or fill his position when he leaves in FA.

4th Rd – RB – Anthony McFarland – Maryland – 5’-9”, 195# – 4.45/40 – So far, Benny “Snail” has been earning his nickname. McFarland could add some much needed speed to the Steelers backfield. A change of pace back who can break off big runs given a little daylight. Not used much in the passing game but his hands look good and he can catch on run. Though he’s undersized, puts in good effort in blocking. He’s better used taking a LB with him on wheel routes, anyway.  Had 131 carries for 1034 yards at 7.9 yards per with 4 TDs in 2018. McFarland also had 7 receptions for 73 yards at 10.4 yards per reception.

4th Rd – FS/SS – J.R. Reed – Georgia – 6’-1”, 194# – 4.57/40 – Sean Davis is almost certainly leaving in free agency. It’s a shame because he would make the ideal FS/SS hybrid backup. Kameron Kelly isn’t really what you want  and neither is Jordan Dangerfield. Reed could be the guy for the job. His versatility makes him a little hard to evaluate. He’s a Free Safety but in Georgia’s scheme they move him from high Safety to the line of scrimmage, in run support, a good bit. Diagnoses and moves to the action very well. Sure tackler and consistently takes good angles. Mainly untested in pass coverage. Son of former NFL Wide Receiver, the talented Jake Reed. He had 66 tackles, 2 for a loss, 1 sack, 2 pass deflections and 2 interceptions in 2018.

5th Rd – (VW mock trade) – OT – Jared Hilders – Washington – 6’-7”, 305# – 5.20/40 – The Steelers thought they had enough Tackle talent they could get rid of Marcus Gilbert. They were wrong. The Chuks-Fieler-Banner rotation has been below average. Hilders is a sturdy Offensive Tackle who is good in both run and pass blocking. Has experience on both sides of the line but is a better fit at RT in the pros.

6th Rd – NT – Leki Fotu – Utah – 6’-5”, 320# – 5.30/40 – This pick is to get rid of Daniel McCullers. He’s never developed and the Steelers hardly play him, anymore. Fotu is a big run stuffer who also draws double teams in pass protection. Not a great threat as a pass rusher but he’s good at clogging up the middle. In 2018 he had 34         tackles, 7 for loss, 3.5 sacks and 1 forced fumble.

7th Rd – FB – Kelton Moore – Nevada – 5’-11”, 220# – 4.56/40 – Everybody loves Rosie Nix but he does nothing for the Steelers offense. A good blocking back should also be a good receiver. Remember Dan Kreider? Kelton Moore fits that mold. He’s solid blocker who moved from RB to FB. He can get tough yards and catch passes. In 2018 he had 90 carries for 433 yards at 4.8 ypc and 4 TDS. A reliable target out of the backfield he added 20 receptions for 116 yards.

So that’s the first mock based on what we’re seeing from the Steelers, so far. What do you think? Do you like the picks and the positions targeted? Are there any players you think the Steelers MUST draft?

Go Stillers!!!

Jeffrey Burton

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One Comment

  1. Mr. McBlitzface

    It would be great if the Steelers drafted Kenny Willeke. He and T.J. Watt could make an outstanding pass rush combo!