The Pittsburgh Steelers have been relegated to mediocrity or just average for the last few seasons and it’s a ‘new’ feeling for the organization and the fans of the black and yellow. The last time the Steelers were in the playoffs was following the 2021 season and lost to the Kansas City Chiefs 42-21 in the wild-card round. The Steelers’ last playoff win came against the Chiefs in the divisional round following the 2016 regular season, over six years ago.
During the 2023 free agency signing period, the Steelers were quick on the job but notable signings as well. First was CB Patrick Peterson (five interceptions last season), to fill the void of losing Cameron Sutton to the Detroit Lions. The other is signing seven-year veteran and Guard- Issac Seumalo. Seumalo started every single game for the Eagles last season and has over 60 career starts, Seumalo has a pass block win rate of 93.6% which ranked 15th among all guards last season via. ESPN. The Steelers most recently traded with the Los Angeles Rams for WR Allen Robinson which is worth mentioning as well. The Steelers followed up the free agency signings with quite the haul in the 2023 NFL draft.
Steelers Continue Building
1st Round Pick (Pick 14) Broderick Jones, OT, Georgia
Potentially a franchise tackle in the NFL, Jones has a lot of potential and upside with the right development that should help the Steelers build towards competing for a Super Bowl. Jones measures 6’4 and weighs 310 pounds, according to Pro Football Focus- Jones did not allow a sack in any of the 448 pass protections snaps he played for Georgia in 2022. Jones had a 99% pass-blocking efficiency rate which tied for the fifth-best.
2nd Round Pick (Pick 32) Joey Porter Jr., CB, Penn State
Very fitting pick by the Steelers in the second round, given how Porter Jr. is the son of Joey Porter who previously played for the Steelers for eight years at LB, was a four-time pro bowler and was part of the 2005 Steelers Super Bowl win. According to Pro Football Focus, he didn’t allow a single touchdown and only one 15-plus yard play last season. Porter Jr. played four seasons at Penn State and generated 113 tackles, defended 21 passes, one sack, and one interception across 34 games.
3rd Round Pick (Pick 93) Darnell Washington, TE, Georgia
Washington is an absolute unit, standing at 6’7 and 264 pounds. Washington can be a savior for not only fellow TE Pat Freiermuth but the passing game in general with his blocking capabilities. Washington and Freiermuth have the potential to be one of if not the best TE duo in all of the NFL. Washington played three seasons at Georgia and accumulated 45 receptions, 774 yards, and three touchdowns across 27 games played in college.
Other 2023 Draft Picks
- 2nd Round, Pick 49: Keeanu Benton, DT, Wisconsin
- 4th Round, Pick 132: Nick Herbig, LB, Wisconsin
- 7th Round, Pick 241: Cory Trice, CB, Purdue
- 7th Round, Pick 251: Spencer Anderson, OT, Maryland
Most have given the Steelers an A+ grade for their overall draft class and have ranked them first or at the very least, in the top three of the 2023 draft among all 32 NFL teams. I tend to agree with that. GM Omar Khan certainly pleased Steelers faithful in his first draft with the Steelers. One thing is for sure, this was certainly the Steelers’ best draft in a long time. Are you excited about the Steelers ‘new’ roster and how far do you think it takes them next season? Let us know in the comments below!
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