Open Rants by Steeler17

A Steelers Offseson
Published at 11/7/2017
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            Even though the Steelers are sitting with a 6-2 record, there are still plenty of improvements that the Steelers need to make going into the offseason. The team is not perfect, but has come a long way, especially in terms of defense. While the salary cap won’t be overflowing, the Steelers should have some money to make improvements. Important to note in this simulation Ben remains for another season while Harrison and Gay call it quits.

            When looking at the overall free agency period, the Steelers don’t have a lot of moves that they need to make. The only notable cut is Coty Sensenbach, as he is given a chance to lock on to another team since he doesn’t have a spot on the Steelers. That isn’t the only move though, as the Steelers orchestrate a trade with the Chiefs. The Steelers send Martavis Bryant and Mike Mitchell for the Chiefs third round pick. The Chiefs are still lacking a true receiver, as Hill is a great gadget option, but lacks other receivers around him. Bryant, while troubled, would provide a major upgrade in a weak core. Meanwhile, this draft class is weak at receiver, so Bryant gives the automatic upgrade they are looking for. On top of that, Mitchell would provide a good option next to Berry. He’s a savvy veteran who should have a good role on the Chiefs.

            Moving in to departures and signings, I feel like the Steelers will not tag Bell again. While the offense has been almost completely dependent on the run game, Bell’s asking price is outrageous considering the position he plays and his track history. I don’t blame him for seeking the big money contract, but the Steelers shouldn’t be the ones to give it to him. Likewise, there aren’t any other in house free agents that should be brought back. Moats is the only candidate that could return, but I feel like the Steelers will roll the dice on the younger options. RFA and that sort will all more than likely receive their individual tenders. Looking at the free agent pool, there aren’t too many players the Steelers should target. In order to fill some depth spots, I have the Steelers signing De’Anthony Thomas to a vet minimum contract. While he isn’t in the style that Bryant is, he provides solid depth and an electric option as a returner. Alfred Morris on the vet minimum would provide the Steelers with a complementary piece to Connor. Finally, while not a replacement for Mitchell, Walt Aikens on a vet  minimum deal would bring good depth and someone to challenge for depth in the secondary. After the additions and subtractions, the Steelers biggest needs go as follows: QB, S, WR, RB, CB, OLB.

Round 1: Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming- The more time passes, the more I think Allen will be the QB for the Steelers. The biggest need is arguably QB, as Ben will retire soon. Allen has all of the physical tools, but he has struggled against upper level competition. Looking at the team around him, its not hard to see why he has struggled. In Pittsburgh, he will be granted time to develop while also being put into a good offense. He will be given a great opportunity to succeed in Pittsburgh.

Round 2: Armani Watts, S, Texas A&M- Davis is developing into a solid run support safety, but there is no good coverage safety on this roster. Watts has good run instincts, but he is a playmaker at safety. While his straight-line speed and man to man skills are a little in question, he would have a decent role his rookie season before taking over for Wilcox the following season.

Round 3 (From KC): Sione Teuhema, OLB, Southeast Louisiana- OLB isn’t the biggest need, but Teuhema looks like he could develop into a really good player. He has good size and technique, and could eventually be a starter on this team. Dupree hasn’t become the star everyone thought he was destined to be, and he may not earn a second contract with the Steelers. You can never too many pass rushers, and Teuhema should be a quality player.

Round 3: David Sills, WR, West Virginia- This is the Bryant replacement, as Sills has great size and good speed. On top of that, he is a monster in the red zone, and could become a touchdown machine for whoever throws the ball to him. He won’t need to start right away, but he could be a key complimentary piece as a rookie.

Round 5 (From SF): Martez Carter, RB, Grambling St.- Think of Carter as a bigger Tarik Cohen. A solid runner with a lot of athletic ability and good pass catching skills to boot, Carter could be an immediate role player with the Steelers. With Bell gone, Connor is set to take on the role of lead back, but adding a player like Carter changes the dynamic of the backfield. Ben loves checking down to the RB, and while Connor has decent hands, Carter could have an immediate impact in that role. He would form a good, young thunder and lightning duo with Connor.

Round 5: DeAndre Baker, CB, Georgia- Baker has an all around solid skill set. He isn’t extremely flashy or athletic, but he is sound in coverage. His ceiling is as a number two CB, but if he develops to that, that is all the Steelers need. They won’t need him year one, has Burns and Haden have those spots locked up. Sutton seems destined for the slot with Hilton, and Allen is a work in progress. This pick keeps good depth in the secondary with the hopes of developing an eventual starter.

Round 7 (From NYG): Kahlil McKenzie, NT, Tennessee- Steeler fans will likely see former Tennessee NT Dan McCullers leave this offseason, as he has never been able to utilize his massive size to his advantage. While Hargrave is quickly becoming a great NT, having good depth along with someone who can stuff the run is needed. McKenzie has good size and strength, but has been injured. He has good potential and could be a quality rotation option and goal line run stuffer with the Steelers.

Round 7: Nyles Morgan, ILB, Notre Dame- I was really tempted to slot another QB here, but with Dobbs being picked last year, there isn’t room for another one. Instead, the Steelers nab an ILB in a good ILB class. He should fall due to this, but Morgan is having a sound season. Williams has locked down the other ILB spot, but depth and special team’s bodies are needed. He is a competitive player and could make the roster as a special team gunner his rookie season.

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