NFL Draft 2017: How the Pittsburgh Steelers mock draft
PITTSBURGH — One day before the 2017 NFL draft begins in Philadelphia, the Steelers’ decision makers will run their own at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex.
“We mock ourselves,” general manager Kevin Colbert said.
They will decide who they would take with the 30th overall pick, what would be worth trading out of that pick for and how their overall scouting grades match up with the selections that come out of them.
Colbert repeatedly de-emphasized the importance of guessing what other teams will do, but did detail how the Steelers practice for it before and through the draft itself.
The draft day eve mock goes all the way through the first round, Colbert said. It also entertains the possibility for trades.
Colbert said this year’s draft is especially unpredictable due to the level of depth in a wide variety of positions. The Steelers’ list of pre-draft visitors included players from a broader range of positions than it has in year’s past.
Mocking the draft clarifies what Pittsburgh will do when put in a given situation and crystallizes the difference between how good the Steelers consider a player to be and if they’ll pick him when available — the difference between grade and need.
“We don’t grade them how we pick them. We grade them how they are and then you get to a quarterback and a corner, in our scenario you’re probably going to take a corner over a quarterback as long as they’re close,” Colbert said. “If the quarterback is significantly better than the corner, then we may be kicking ourselves if we didn’t take the quarterback that is available to us.”
And on Monday, Colbert said he and Tomlin were discussing how volatile this year’s draft is shortly before speaking to members of the local media.
When they mock the first round of the draft on Wednesday, they’ll add in the possibility of trading out of it, too.
“So in the event we trade down we’re going to know, if we go four spots, do we have four people?” Colbert said. “So we’ve got to be prepared to do that before we get into the room, which we will be.”
Though Wednesday’s will be the final mock draft, a similar process plays out through Friday and Saturday.
The Steelers will reset their big board on Friday morning based off Thursday night’s first-round picks around the league. They’ll do the same Friday night and Saturday morning after the second- and third-round selections.
Said Colbert: “Just to see how the rest of it may unfold.”
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