NFL Hot Press: Steelers Tried to Trade for Trae Waynes

Steelers Tried to Trade for Trae Waynes

Updated May 6, 2015
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.

Entering the 2015 NFL Draft, one of the popular projections for the Pittsburgh Steelers was having them take a cornerback in the first round. It made sense, as corner has been a need position for years. Many were projecting the Steelers to take Wake Forest cornerback Kevin Johnson, but Johnson didn’t make to Pittsburgh pick after he was snatched up by the Texans at No. 16. Pittsburgh ended up taking Kentucky outside linebacker Bud Dupree with the 22nd-overall selection to help upgrade their pass rush. While the Steelers didn’t take a corner in the first round, it wasn’t from a lack of trying. Sources from around the league told us that the Steelers were calling teams to see about a trade, and their target was Michigan State cornerback Trae Waynes.

Pittsburgh was calling teams to gauge what it would take to get them to move down. The Steelers weren’t willing to give up a huge amount of picks, and Waynes ended up going to the Vikings with the 11th-overall pick. Moving into the top 10 was too costly for the Steelers. Leading up to the draft ,they were calling teams to prepare a potential move, but with Waynes not sliding into the teens, Pittsburgh was never close to accomplishing a trade.

The Steelers ended up selecting Ole Miss cornerback Senquez Golson in the second round. Sources say that Golson projects as a nickel corner, and they feel that Pittsburgh will still be looking for some starting outside corners next year. The 5-foot-8 Golson doesn’t project as a corner who can match up against Cincinnati’s A.J. Green (6-4, 207), given Green’s height advantage. Fourth-round pick Doran Grant (5-10, 200) could also compete for playing time for the Steelers, but he isn’t the tall length corner that the Steelers were targeting in the first round with Waynes (6-0, 186) or Johnson (6-0, 188).

The Steelers have received a lot of praise for landing Dupree at No. 22m as many projected Dupree to go in the top half of the first round. However, Pittsburgh’s plan A was moving up to get Waynes.

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