Why Undrafted?: Anthony Steen

Why Undrafted?: Anthony Steen, G, Alabama
By Charlie Campbell, @draftcampbell

It is surprising that Steen went undrafted when you consider that he was a starter on one of the most dominant offensive lines in college football history. Steen was part of the 2012 unit that led Alabama to a second consecutive national title. He remained an effective starter for the Crimson Tide and its potent ground game as a senior in 2013.

From a skill-set perspective, Steen wasn’t viewed as a prospect similar to other early-round picks like Chance Warmack, D.J. Fluker and Cyrus Kouandjio. However, many believed that Steen would at least be a mid- to late-round draft pick. After an offseason in which Steen struggled to work out for scouts, he went undrafted.

According to sources, medical concerns were the leading factors in Steen not being selected in the 2014 NFL Draft. A lot of Alabama prospects have been dinged by teams for being banged up entering the league. Steen quickly fell into that group when he couldn’t play at the Senior Bowl or be a full participant at the Combine. His medical exam did not go well either, and sources say that caused many teams to drop him from consideration for a draft pick.

The Arizona Cardinals signed Steen after he wasn’t selected, and that was an astute landing spot for him. Arizona’s new regime has made progress in improving the organization’s offensive line the past two offseasons, but there still remains work to be done. Jonathan Cooper was injured as a rookie, and the rest of the interior offensive line could use more talent and competition.

It would really help Steen’s long-term prospects if he could learn to play center. That could buy him more developmental time if he is a game-day backup at center and guard early in his career. If Steen can stay healthy and develop his game, there’s a chance that Arizona has found its long-term right guard to go with Cooper.

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