Throughout the year and leading up to the 2021 NFL draft, we will update our Pittsburgh Steelers Mock Draft Roundup showing picks for the Pittsburgh Steelers from several prominent sites and draft analysts.
Previous iterations of my mock have seen the Steelers target offense here -- either OT (Mock 5.0) or RB (Mock 4.0), as examples. Letting Bud Dupree depart via free agency, however, it would be reasonable for the Steelers to add a replacement here.
While I don't think there's any chance that the Steelers let T.J. Watt hit free agency in 2022, he's currently scheduled to play on the fifth-year option of his rookie deal. Leading the SEC with 9.5 sacks in 10 games, the 20-year-old edge rusher had three sacks and two forced fumbles in Georgia's bowl game against the Cincinnati Bearcats.
Teven Jenkins is tempting here. He's a mauler on the offensive line, and the Steelers must rebuild that unit from the ground up. Ultimately, I went in a different direction because the lineman class is deep -- I have more than a dozen in this mock -- and running back is just as much of a concern. Harris is a powerful back who is nearly impossible to stop between the tackles. The Steelers' 3.6 yards per carry ranked dead last in the NFL last season, and it doesn't appear that James Conner is returning, currently leaving the rushing to an unproven group of Benny Snell Jr., Anthony McFarland Jr., Kalen Ballage and Jaylen Samuels. Let's get an impact running back.
If the Steelers are going to give it another go with Big Ben at the helm, they are going to have to try and protect him so look for them to go offensive line here especially given their starting left tackle is now a free agent. Mayfield is another guy who can play outside or move in depending on what the Steelers do in the offseason but he should be able to help either way.
The Steelers are facing difficult decisions at almost every major position after this season, but it's clear the offensive line has to be a priority. Vera-Tucker was one of the best offensive tackles in the country, but could also shine on the interior in the NFL.
The Steelers desperately need to fix their porous offensive line. While re-signing tackle Zach Banner and adding B.J. Finney and Joe Haeg in free agency was a start, the team can't stop there. Dickerson comes with injury concerns--he had four season-ending injuries in five college seasons--but he's a big, burly brawler who'd be an instant starter for Pittsburgh at center. He has experience playing all five offensive line positions too, giving the team some coveted versatility up front.
The Steelers' offensive line struggled this season, and that was before Maurkice Pouncey retired and Alejandro Villanueva tested free agency. Pittsburgh never has been shy about taking interior linemen in the first round, and they do so here with Landon Dickerson, a big, tough center with great strength.