Friday, March 28, 2008

And the Next Name on the Steelers' Draft Board

Rob D mentioned it yesterday and it pretty much confirms what we already suspected: Branden Albert won't be around at 1.23. But it's much worse than I thought: Charley Casserly's wig thinks Albert could be a top-10 pick. Awesome.

We've had this conversation a million times already and the draft is still a month off, but I've actually resigned myself to the idea that the Steelers might not draft an o-linemen in the first three rounds. I could envision things shaking out in such a way that they grab a linebacker, wideout, or running back in rounds 1-3.

Completely random thought: For some reason, I get a Troy Williamson feel about Devin Thomas even though I've never seen either one of them play in college. It's just all the as-the-draft-nears hype that makes me wary. Thomas looks too perfect, which makes me hope the Steelers don't take him although it looks like he could be gone by the 11th pick (Bills).

Anyway, in a last-ditch effort to reunite the once great HSS community, a little group-building exercise (actually, I just think we should all be on record with our picks since every other clown with an internet connection is): Three-round mock draft! To tell the truth, this is more of a "what I wouldn't mind seeing happen now that Albert will be a Carolina Panther" mock draft, and I've added one constraint: you can't take an o-lineman (it'll be just like you're in the Steelers' war room!). Whatever, here goes:

1 - Quentin Groves, OLB. Kick-ass pass rushers are a lot like cornerbacks: you can never have too many good ones. I kinda like the idea of a group of young, fast menacing linebackers wreaking havoc all over the field.

2 - Justin King, CB. Hey, if you're going defense, don't half-ass it. I'd much rather have Brandon Flowers here, but I'm guessing that 4.54-40 at the Combine isn't enough to make him fall to the bottom third of the second round.

Another possibility: Trevor Laws, DT. I'm not sure if he fits into the 3-4 scheme at either NT or DE, but he was kicking people's asses all over the Senior Bowl. Just my uninformed thought.

3 - Eddie Royal, WR. I have no idea if he'll last this long, but he's a good returner, so that's nice. Of course, I'm not even sure the Steelers are looking for a returner at this point, what with Jeremy Bloom on the roster.

And for as leery as am on Thomas, I wouldn't mind the Steelers taking Early Doucet (assuming they were forced at gunpoint to draft a WR in the second round). Mike Mayock compared him to Hines Ward in terms of toughness, which seems like a pretty big compliment.

So there you have it: the world's worst mock draft. Enjoy.