Friday, April 15, 2011

The NFL Draft is Just Around the Corner

It's a tricky draft to call.

It's tough to predict the Steelers' pick at No. 31 in the first round. Heck, it's tough to predict Carolina's pick with the No. 1 selection

The Steelers have plenty of holes to fill. At the moment, we're kind of leaning toward Texas cornerback Aaron Williams (if he's available), but we're open to other possibilities, especially on the offensive line and defensive line.

We've noticed Williams in big games the past couple years, however, and he seems to be one of those guys who just jumps off the television screen -- you can't help but see his talent. Granted, highlight plays can be misleading, but Williams seems to have the skills, the physical tools, the mindset and the background of playing in a big-time program.

Williams was featured (along with Nebraska cornerback Prince Makamura) on this week's segment of the NFL Network's "Game Changers" program featuring former coach Steve Mariucci, who sits down and runs through drills with a couple of top prospects every week. Although Amakamura is widely considered a top-10 pick and Williams is projected to last till late in the first round, Williams was every bit as impressive as Amakamura, and maybe more so, during this half-hour show. For what it's worth. Both players displayed humility, a positive, team-oriented attitude, and both came off as studious, serious and coachable. For what it's worth.

The Steelers need help at cornerback, so he just might be a good fit here. You can never have too many good cornerbacks. Of course, you can never have too many good offensive linemen, too, and right now the Steelers don't have enough. And, pretty soon they've not going going to enough defensive linemen, either, considering the age on the defensive line.

In the bigger picture, for some reason, this year's NFL draft seems somehow more unsettled than previous years, and it has nothing to do with the lockout.

What we
do know -- galling as it is -- is that the New England Patriots hold three of the first 33 picks -- two first round picks (No. 17 & 28) and the first pick in the second round (No. 33 overall) -- and six of the first 92 picks in the draft.

The Patriots went 14-2 last year.

A pox on the New England Patriots.

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