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Big Changes for Steelers in New 7-Round Mock Draft Update

Big Changes for Steelers in New 7-Round Mock Draft Update

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Big changes for Steelers in new 7round mock draft update

With the 2023 NFL Draft fast approaching, the Steelers will be looking for major changes on their roster. Kenny Pickett will take over at quarterback and it is important that he has the best support system around him.

That necessitates adding a pass protector who will hold Pickett upright and encourage his development. The Steelers could opt for veteran tackle Broderick Jones.

1. Deonte Banks

The Steelers need major improvements on defense, particularly at cornerback and wide receiver. Their offensive line needs help, and their wide receiver corps is in disarray. Adding more depth at these positions could be the answer.

As a rookie, Deonte Banks made quite an impression as Maryland's strong and aggressive cover man. He has all of the tools to be an impressive starter at the NFL level; however, he needs to improve on his technique in order to become more of an all-around defender.

He boasts a long frame and the ability to shrug off solo blocks on the boundary. Additionally, his play strength in shedding blockers inside gives him potential as an excellent run-supporting defender.

His technique is still developing, but he demonstrates patience and discipline with his feet as he aligns to squeeze the boundary and keep receivers off balance. Furthermore, his athleticism allows him to stick to receivers while turning and running, while his acceleration gives him an edge against stacked transitions.

Banks possesses the hip fluidity to quickly sink and redirect in response to out-breaking routes. He can run with NFL-sized receivers, and his lateral quickness and agility are truly remarkable for someone of his size and athleticism.

Banks is expected to perform well at the NFL Combine and it's easy to see why he could be a potential Day 2 selection for New Orleans in 2023. The Saints prioritize investing in their secondary, and Banks could help them with that. His athleticism and versatility make him an ideal fit for their defensive scheme as he can play either inside or outside the box on either side of the field.

2. Broderick Jones

One of the biggest changes in this 7-round mock draft update is Broderick Jones joining the Steelers. He's a formidable tackle who can protect passers, move people in the run game and make plays in space.

It's easy to see why he was such an integral part of the team's Super Bowl win. He was one of the best blockers at this year's Senior Bowl and will continue playing a key role on a defensive line that has already lost Dan Moore and Frank Clark.

Jones has the potential to be an elite pass-rusher. He possess the length and leverage necessary for him to be a dominating presence on the edge, despite being only 6-foot-3 and 235 pounds.

In this draft, there aren't many undersized edge defenders left, making Jones an invaluable pick for the Steelers. He can help get the most out of Chris Jones and is a no-nonsense type who can make plays in the run game with his strong, athletic frame.

Kelee Ringo is another viable option, standing 6'2" and 210 pounds with a linebacker-like physique. While he can turn and burn, my concerns lie in his sudden changes of direction and acceleration.

He can play either inside or outside, but I believe he'll excel best on the interior line. His power to beat people up is impressive, but he needs time to develop in the NFL.

Calijah Kancey may still be young, but his speed and agility allow him to make an immediate impact. He'll surely give people flashbacks to another Pittsburgh D-lineman who was undersized but a force on the edge: Aaron Donald.

3. Demetrius Mitchell

Pittsburgh is anticipating big changes in this draft and Demetrius Mitchell stands as a prime candidate to deliver them. While he may not be as highly-touted as Deonte Banks or Broderick Jones, Mitchell can still make an impact on this league.

Mitchell has the size and strength of a tackle, plus plenty of SEC experience to boot. He's an effective run defender with good gap discipline as well as an elite pass rusher.

His size could potentially limit him, but he's an impressive value pick for the Steelers. Coming from such a prestigious program, this could be a long-term solution at left tackle.

Brian Daboll and Joe Schoen have their hands full with Evan Neal/OT Alabama, one of the few 330+ pounders in this draft from a highly regarded college program. Evan Neal could provide them with plenty of protection on defense as well.

He's an impressive run defender with excellent gap discipline, capable of playing up and down the line to fill a major void on the Steelers offensive line. With him, Daniel Jones can improve and Saquon Barkley can have a more secure path towards success.

This year, the Giants are going to need an off-ball linebacker and Chenal is a great prospect who reminds me of Tremaine Edmunds. His size and athleticism are great assets but his injury history could pose a problem going into this draft.

The Bears are not done improving their offensive line, as they'll look to add another mauler at this stage in the draft. Hall is an exceptional athlete with impressive length and strength that make him a great fit for the Steelers. He can play multiple positions along the line and potentially has All-Pro potential.

4. Davonte Roy

With a new general manager and assistant general manager, the Steelers may take a different approach to evaluating draft prospects than they did under Kevin Colbert. That could create an entirely different atmosphere in this year's draft process - which is where Davonte Roy fits in.

Last season, the Steelers' run defense was abysmal, allowing 146.1 yards per game rushing. This was largely due to the absence of Stephon Tuitt and Tyson Alualu on the interior defensive line; without these stars, Pittsburgh struggled to find effective players who could anchor their zone defense.

Therefore, the Steelers need to add young talent on the front side of their defense. Roy could be an ideal pick in this regard.

He's a large player who can play over the guard and slide to nose tackle when needed, making him an intriguing prospect for the Steelers to consider. Additionally, his play strength allows him to rush the passer with precision, while his technique is highly disciplined.

His explosive first step sets him apart from his competitors and allows him to collapse the pocket or sprint through it with ease. Plus, he's strong enough for the NFL's demands so he'll be an invaluable asset in Pittsburgh's run defense from day one.

He can flex his hips to cover receivers and run with the ball, making him an ideal candidate for the Steelers who need depth in their secondary. Furthermore, his physicality could fit nicely under Teryl Austin's system.

5. Darius Leonard

Over the past 13 years, Pittsburgh Steelers have always boasted an outstanding defense. Unfortunately, one area where Pittsburgh has struggled is at inside linebacker. When Pro Bowl talent Ryan Shazier suffered a spinal injury requiring surgery last December, it became evident that someone needed to step in and make an even greater impact in his absence. Fortunately, veteran James Harrison proved just that with his impressive resume.

Darius Leonard, the second-round pick from South Carolina State, has made quite an impact since joining the Colts three seasons ago. In that time he's recorded 320 total tackles (26 for loss), 15.0 sacks, seven interceptions and nine forced fumbles - earning him first-team All-Pro status and two Pro Bowl selections - making him a player everyone on the team is proud of.

Leonard is an intelligent, savvy player who can cover in zone but also play man coverage effectively. Additionally, his unique skill set enables him to be effective on the run as well.

He's already had an impact on the Colts' defense during his brief career, and should continue to be a dominant presence with Matt Eberflus at the helm for the rest of this season. If he stays healthy and continues producing at his current rate, it could help guarantee that the Colts keep winning football games this season.

He's a top-five pick in this mock, and could provide the Steelers with an edge in the passing game, particularly when it comes to the red zone. An all-around versatile playmaker who should have an immense impact over time, he may even make the Pro Bowl in 2023!

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