There are many opinions of what position the Pittsburgh Steelers should target when they are on the clock in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft this Thursday.
However, whether you believe the team should target a wide receiver, cornerback, defensive lineman or another position, the Steelers very well may do that. They just may not do it at pick No. 15.
Steelers’ general manager Kevin Colbert confirmed on Monday that the Steelers won’t be trading up in the draft, but there’s a chance that they could trade down.
The Steelers haven’t traded up in the draft in eight seasons. The last time they did, it was to take wide receiver Santonio Holmes. Colbert noted that the team won’t trade up because it can’t, having traded their third-round pick last season to draft safety Shamarko Thomas in the fourth round.
“We won’t be trading up because we can’t,” Colbert told the Post-Gazette’s Gerry Dulac. “We can still trade down and, with the depth of the draft, that’s a real possibility. Or, at least, it’s an option that’s available to us.”
This draft is considered one of the deepest in recent memory, so trading down is an option that really makes sense for the Steelers, given their many needs.
The Steelers haven’t traded down in the first round since 2001, when they moved down three spots to draft nose tackle Casey Hampton with the 19th overall pick.
They could follow suit this season as if they are targeting a defensive lineman, they could likely get the player they want later in the first round.
Colbert also said that there are about 19 different players that the Steelers could take in the first round. With so many players that they like right now, it makes sense to move down and acquire extra picks, while still getting one of the players they targeted.
“The player that is going to be available to us at 15, in years past, you may have had to been picking at seven or maybe eight to get the same quality of a player,” Colbert said. “There are easily 15 players available that we will be very happy with if we are able to pick them. I think you can go and say there are probably at least 19 that you could say you’d be happy to get at pick No. 15. It’s unique.”
So when Thursday night rolls around, the Steelers look like they could be very busy. They just might not be picking at No. 15.