Steelers offseason needs as the draft countdown begins


James Walker of ESPN takes a look at the needs of the AFC North today and looks at the upcoming April Draft as well. Here is what he has to say about the Steelers needs:

Just one year removed from winning a Super Bowl, the Steelers do not have a lot of major needs. But a 9-7 season exposed some weaknesses with Pittsburgh, and cornerback is probably the biggest. William Gay was not ready to make the jump to a full-time starter in 2009. Unfortunately for Pittsburgh, there are not a lot of corners with first-round grades thus far, although that may change after the combine and individual workouts.

The status of Pro Bowl nose tackle and pending free agent Casey Hampton is another issue. The Steelers could use the franchise tag to keep Hampton for at least another year while they try to find a replacement. Defensive tackle Dan Williams from the University of Tennessee would be an enticing draft option in the first round. Depth on the offensive line is also needed.

I don’t think there’s any doubt that corner is the teams biggest need at this point. If and when the team decides it’s going to do whatever it takes to keep Hampton in the middle, the next thing they had better do is find a way to upgrade the corner spot. A healthy Troy Polamalu in 2010 will make the secondary better, no doubt, but the team needs better corners, and they should look at free agency and the draft for that right away.

About the Author

Matt Loede
Matt Loede has been in the sports media for over 16 years, with experience covering the MLB, NBA, and NFL. On Sunday’s during football season, you can hear Matt on national networks like Fox Sports Radio, Associated Press, and others. Born and raised in Cleveland Ohio, Matt studies and talks football inside and out, and is anxious to share his thoughts and comments with readers on a daily basis.

4 Comments on "Steelers offseason needs as the draft countdown begins"

  1. ESPN is saying the Steelers are taking a OL in the first round! I still say they are going CB or NT

  2. I’d like to see them take CB Perrish Cox. They may be able to trade down in the first and still get him. If they can get an extra pick in the 3rd round, they could use it to add some youth to the D-line.
    D-line is the deepest I have ever seen in this draft. Here are some of the players I like that you may be able to get in the 2nd/3rd round (because of the depth at the possitions, I’m betting at least one of these 3 will still be available in the 3rd round):

    Cam Thomas, DT, North Carolina – Flashed brute strength at the senior bowl practices, A vocal presence on the field, Thomas is also extremely active and aggressive while using his hands to get off of blocks. Had a good sack in the senior bowl game when he pushed the O-line back into the QB. (3-4 NT)

    Tyson Alualu, DT, California – Was quick and explosive off the snap. Consistently got good pressure in the senior bowl. Recovered a fumble and also recorded a sack in the senior bowl. Good character. Played 3-4 DE in college.

    Alex Carrington, DE, Arkansas State – A small school sleeper who flashed talent in all the senior bowl practices (At different points running over Zane Beadles, Mike Iupati, Shawn Lauvao, and Thomas Welch). (284 lbs.)

  3. I’d like them to shoot for Stanfords RB ..Tobi Gerhart ..He’s rough and would give us fresh legs at RB …Keep Joe Burnett , Polumalu, Ike taylor and say goodbye to the rest of the Defensive backs ..Or go OL w/ the Kidd from Idaho geting back to STEELER football !!!

  4. I would like to see them sign Le’Ron McClain to get that big back we need to end games and keep our defense off the field. We lost to many games in the 4th quarter because we didn’t have that punishing, bruising rusher to keep the ball moving and help run time off the clock. O-line was good enough to get us 2 1000 yard receivers, 1000 yard rusher, and 4000 for Ben. If Ben throws for 4000 yards every year we won’t get back to the Super Bowl. We need to draft O-line, D-line and CB. I believe Baltimore put a restricted status on LeRon so he wouldn’t go to a team in the division. I don’t normally believe one player can make that big a difference but this might be that one time.

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