The Steelers desperately need quality depth behind their starters, so watch out for some edge rushers this year.
Draft coverage should get a lot more attention as the Steelers seemingly called it quits in the 2022 season. They dealt away one of their best receivers before the trade deadline, shipping Chase Claypool to Chicago. That deal gave Pittsburgh a great second-round pick in the upcoming 2023 NFL Draft.
That should open the door for two quality prospects available for the black and gold to pick from day two of the draft. Outside linebacker continue to struggle with their depth behind their two starters. That should be the focus leading into the off-season with a hopeful resolution to this deep concern coming to light.
Will Anderson is the best dog on the edge of this tour
This Alabama standout is still expected to be in the top five of the upcoming draft. He has game-changing skills at the edge position, which will attract many teams. He has fallen back a bit on his production from last season, but he is still young and has a lot of football to go this year to show the scouts what he is all about. The Steelers will consider Anderson if he is still available, but needs in other positions may lead them to select someone else.
Myles Murphy could be an interesting option for the Steelers
Another junior will be added as Myles Murphy is currently on track for his best season yet. He’s a big guy with excellent athleticism with the kind of size he plays at. Murphy might not fit right into the schedule the Steelers normally run, but he could make that transition. He’s currently rising up draft boards and should be able to get solid test scores on the combine that will continue his ascent.
Isaiah Foskey could be an interesting option if he makes it to the second round
Junior edge rushers will be popular this year as Isaiah Foskey has both potential and immediate impact for his next team. He could be an interesting option for the Steelers if he drops to the second round of the draft. He is currently on track for his best season yet with Notre Dame, while the rest of his team is having a bad year. Of the top edge rushers listed above him, Foskey is arguably the best overall player and the one best suited to the Steelers defense.
Honorable mentions for the Steelers to watch
Nolan Smith, RAND, Georgia
The Bulldogs are going to miss one of their best defensive players as Nolan Smith will be out for the rest of the year with a chest injury. He’s a slim passrusher who needs to be even more productive, which will hopefully happen at the next level. Smith could be a good bet for the Steelers on day two of the draft, as they don’t need him to make an immediate impact behind the starters in his rookie year.
Felix Anudike-Uzomah, Kansas State
Last season was Felix Anudike-Uzomah’s breakthrough performance, but this year is the blast. He’s been able to start his final collegiate season strong after putting up an impressive pass rush sheet last time around. Anudike-Uzomah may not be a finished product, but he’s a willing learner who already has a few successful pass rush moves in his toolbox. This Junior fits what the Steelers are looking for, and would be a great addition on day two of the draft.
BJ Ojulari, RAND, LSU
Many juniors are among the most interesting candidates in the fringe position and BJ Ojulari should be one considering staying in school. If not, he might be a late day two prospect when it’s all said and done. He has all the tools that can make him great, but Ojulari would be a project that would come out of design. This year has been a disappointment for LSU as a whole and this player has not added to the stat division as he hoped.
The Steelers could use some help on the edge behind their two starters. This position could be a goal on day two as long as the draft board falls some way for Pittsburgh.