First, the latter.
What we think will happen is that a team leapfrogs the Steelers in the draft order and selects
In fact, we wouldn't be at all surprised if two or even three teams leapfrog the Steelers, who have Dallas and then Baltimore right behind them in the draft sequence. Somebody's going to want to get in front of those two teams specifically, for whatever reasons they might have.
While we acknowledge the desperate need for a good cornerback, we believe Beckham would make more of an impact than any of the top corners available.
A Trade Down: Very Possible
What we think will happen is the Steelers trade down, possibly with the Jets (who have 12 picks and hold the No. 18 spot overall). In this scenario, the Steelers will hope to get the best corner available, or possibly offensive tackle Zack Martin. They will then use their second-round pick on a receiver or to bulk up the defensive line. The third-round draft choice they get in return for trading down will help them to stock up at other positions of need in a very deep draft.
Besides the Jets, other trade partners might include:
- San Francisco, which has 11 picks, including No. 30 overall, two second-rounders (56 and 61), three third-rounders (77, 94 and 100, the last of which is a compensatory selection, which cannot be traded);
- Denver, which has just seven picks but wants a top corner and/or linebacker Ryan Shazier and is in all-out, win-now mode;
- Cleveland, with 12 picks, including No. 26 in the first round and two third-rounders (No. 71 and No. 83, which they got from the Steelers). The Steelers want a third-rounder this year, and No. 71 or thereabouts would be a good one to obtain.
Not so Far-fetched?
It's not impossible to envision a scenario where the Falcons or Jaguars trade down from their high number-one slots to lower in the first round (after No. 15), and then flip that lower first-round pick (plus another lower-round pick) back to the Steelers for the No. 15 slot.
Of the players widely projected to be available at No. 15, Joey Porters Pit Bulls like the following options for the Steelers, in the following order:
- Odell Beckham, Jr. (WR, LSU)
- Justin Gilbert (CB, Okla. St.)
- Zack Martin (OL, Notre Dame)
- Kyle Fuller (CB, VT)
- Calvin Pryor (S, Louisville)
- Anthony Barr (OLB, UCLA)
That's it, Fort Pitt. This year, let's get play-makers and impact players who will be real Steelers.