It’s time Pittsburgh Steelers fans.
Yes, it’s all over, and now it is time to “analyze” what had transpired in the 2013 NFL Draft.
The Steelers went into the draft with a lot of holes to fill. I wrote last week that this was a “can’t miss” draft for the Steelers. While only time will tell what this year’s draft class will be remembered as. I’m going to offer my thoughts on how the team fared with each of their draft picks.
Now remember, I write about sports. I don’t pretend to know more than the Steelers front office when it comes to selecting who will, or will not be a Pittsburgh Steeler. That being said, I will not be a “Homer” and rave about players picked that have “certain issues” but are “great character guys”. As far as I’m concerned, the Steelers made some picks that I’m not even close to sure about, including number one pick Jarvis Jones.
Now just because I feel this way means nothing at all to Steeler Fans. They will tell you that there is a possibility that this entire draft class has a legitimate shot at making the team. Well, that might be the case, but I honestly do not believe that all of the players in the 2013 Steelers draft class are that good that they are going to force a lot of veteran players off the roster. I think it is more indicative of the fact that the Steelers we so “Need Laden” in this draft due to their past several draft miscues, that a “house cleaning” so to speak, may be in order.
With all of that being said, here are my individual grades for each player chosen, as well as a cumulative grade at the end to wrap it up. As a wise man (That being my Editor Matt Shetler) said to me “It’s good to disagree on things”. I have a feeling after this column, I may make a few people in the” Steeler Nation” not only disagree with me, I might even make them a little unhappy, but I call them as I see them folks….
Round One- Jarvis Jones LB from Georgia
A number one pick is never a ‘Sure Thing”. (See Ryan Leaf, Jamarcus Russell, and Tony Manderich etc…) You get the picture. The best you can hope for is to scout said player, interview and workout player, and hope like hell your number one pick is not a bust.
Jones was picked in this slot because of the loss of James Harrison. The Steelers see him immediately step in in to compete with Jason Worlids. Yes, Jarvis was a sack machine in the SEC. Yes he is a “Character Guy” the Steelers so often rave about. I know his primary job is to knock whatever QB he is facing into the ground, ferociously and repeatedly. The thing is, in Dick LeBeau’s complex defense, he also has to read the offense and actually drop back in coverage from time to time. Right now, that is a problem.
It was also a problem at Georgia. He also has “Spinal Steno-sis” which doctors say should not make him more prone to a neck injury in the future, but that makes me very nervous. At his Pro Day he was clocked at 4.9 in the 40 yard dash which also made his stock drop. Another thing that concerned me watching tape of Jones is that he gets “stood up” a lot battling larger defensive tackles. He also has a tendency to give up on the play if he cannot reach the quarterback or ball carrier on his first attempt.
With all of that being said, does the young man have talent? You don’t get as many sacks as he did especially in the SEC without talent. If he puts in the work, with time, he may very well be a more than serviceable starter in the NFL. As far as taking Worlids job this year? I’m not seeing it. GRADE-B –