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your draft grade and playoff teams predictions

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I went to nfl.com and how they graded the teams draft for 2018. From what I saw, most teams had a good draft according to that site.

How would you rate our draft (A-F scale)

Who had the best and worst drafts?

On a related topic, and for the teams that  improved this off season. Which teams do you see making the playoffs for both conferences this season ?

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Posted (edited)

I would rate our draft a C+.  We got some good players, but the fact that neither ILB nor OLB was taken in the draft makes it hard to like.  

Forgot who suggested it, but maybe they're planning to play the new wrinkle amoeba defense with 3 down lineman and 8 safeties.  Remember, it's all about versatility and flexibility.   

Edited by JLambert58

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My gut instinct was to rate it an F. But if (and there are a LOT of big IFs involved), they can use Edmunds and Allen as subpackege linebackers, use Samuels as a move TE, Washington as a vertical threat and Big Ben goes down and Rudolph is a huge upgrade over the backup scrubs they’ve had for years, it could be good. 

 

I’m still not going over a C- though. Too many IFs, reaches, etc.

 

i didn’t watch day 3 of the draft as i was traveling to Belarus all day. I tried to catch up between flights. 

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I see other teams improving and the Steelers staying the same. In other words, they regressed relative to the competition. I’m also saying they stayed the same as they were without Shazier. So worse than the 13-3 team they were last year by far. Could make the playoffs but they’re no longer a complete team thanks to the LBs being so subpar. They’ll be way too reliant on the O to try and score 46 as they give up 45 to the Shaguars in the playoffs for example. 42 doesn’t cut it!

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Terrell Edmunds S VT - C-
- There's reports of most teams having a 4th round grade on him, a handful with 5th round grades, and at least 2 with UDFA grades.  We massively reached with this one.  We picked a safety that struggles at the key things you need to do at safety.  Not only that we took the poor man's Sean Davis, who we already have.  Oh and we signed the rich man's Sean Davis in Morgan Burnett in the offseason.  Along with JJ Wilcox we got 4 box safeties and not one guy who has the ability to play deep safety at a high level.

James Washington WR OKS - B-
The player himself is fine, even if I personally think he's limited.  And we did need a WR after trading Bryant to the Raiders for a 3rd round pick.  The problem for me is the role he's going to play (deep threat) isn't something we needed to spend a second round pick on.  It's a bit of a waste of a pick for the role he's going to play.

Mason Rudolph QB OKS - B+
I really like this pick, and saw this kid going in that late 1st/early 2nd, so to get him in the 3rd is a steal IMO.  Has the arm talent you could ask for.  Needs to develop footwork, anticipation, and needs to learn how to call plays.  But that's why I liked him, because with Ben in place for 2-3 years, Rudolph can sit and learn everything he needs to learn.

Chukwuma Okorafor OT WMU - B
I like this kid.  Has the prototypical size of a NFL LT.  Has the ability to do stuff, but needs some good coaching.  And we have that in Mike Munchak.  I think he steps in day one as a swing tackle and makes up nicely for losing Chris Hubbard in FA.  I think this might have been a sign of us moving on from Marcus Gilbert at the end of his contract too.

Marcus Allen S/LB PSU - A
I love this pick.  Allen has a nose for the football and if just in plays.  He's not a small safety at 6'2" 217.  He's only 10 pounds off the playing weight of Ryan Shazier, so I think this is the replacement for the athletic ILB.  He's ok in coverage, but excels in the run game and playing in the box.  If we can use him the same way then we can have some real success with him.

Jaylen Samuels RB/WR/FB NC State - C+
Jack of all master of none.  I really don't know what to make of this pick TBH.  He doesn't really have a position on the field, and in the past we've taken plenty of these guys but have always failed to find an actual role for them in the offense.  He's a 3rd down RB without the ability to block, a WR who struggles to get open, and a FB how doesn't play with power.  If we find a role for him great, but I think he's a long shot to make the team.

Joshua Frazier NT Alabama - A+
Yes I'm giving the 7th round pick an A+ grade.  He's a NT who's a wide body, plays with a great base, and demands extra blockers.  Wasn't a starter for Bama because of subpackages, but when he was in there they were one of the toughest teams to run the ball on, and that's what we need anchoring our defense in run downs.  I think he makes NT Danial McCullers expendable and pushes Hargraves to a DE role in the long term.

UDFA:
Parker Cothren DT PSU (camp body)
Jarvion Franklin RB WMU (camp body)
Greg Gilmore DE LSU (pushes LT Walton)
Quandree Henderson WR Pitt (I think he makes the team as returner/ST player)
Trey Johnson CB Villanova (long shot but talented)
Pharoah McKever TE NC State (camp body)
Patrick Morris C TCU (Practice Squad guy)
Ikenna Nwokeji OL Elon (camp body)
Olasunkanmi Adeniyi OLB Toledo (real chance to make the team)
Chris Schleuger G UAB (camp body)
Jamar Summers CB UCONN (camp body)
Matthew Thomas LB FSU (chance to make it out of lack of players at position)
Kendal Vicker DE Tennessee (camp body)

Overall - C
We didn't really do much to address our biggest needs (centerfield FS, ILB, EDGE).  We reached a bit early and filled 'non-needs'.  But at the same time with some of these picks we did set ourselves a nice potential future by getting the QBOTF with Rudolph, as well as parts that can help him develop and be part of the future.

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Just added this to the NFL Draft Board, figured I'd share it here too.

The Steelers draft was underwhelming.  Cannot remember a year when so many fans were resigned to silence after the draft.

1)  Terrell Edmunds S -  B 

Given our need at safety and the overall theme of getting versatile, athletic players who are good tacklers with good character, it makes sense.  Also has NFL bloolines as his dad was a Pro-Bowl TE and obviously his brother comes into the NFL with high expectations.  Was he take too early?  We'll never know if he makes it to #60, but I think he fits well in our defense as a 3rd safety, Day 1.

2)  James Washington WR - B

Having just traded Martavis Bryant, we were in the market for a deep threat.  Washington, while not clocked at blazing speed was an effective, productive deep threat for Oklahoma St.  While not a prototypical WR body, he has ridiculously long arms and is known for making contested catches.  Given the Steelers FO's track record with WRs, he might be a special #3 in a year or two. 

3)  Mason Rudolph QB - B+  

Not a high grade because we necessarily needed a QB for 2018 but because he represents good value in the middle of the 3rd round.  I like the fact that he continued to get better every year in college and was highly productive.  Will he be the successor to Big Ben?  Who knows.  But the potential is there.  Wake-up call for Landry Jones to keep his #2 spot.  The Josh Dobbs experiment is now suspended indefinitely.

4)  Chuks Okarofor OT - D

Steelers drafted on OT project when the need for ILB and OLB was much greater.  Biggest head scratcher in our draft.  MAYBE he ends up being a good swing tackle.  No idea.  But this is the worst pick of the draft imo.

5)  Marcus Allen S - B

Big, pure box safety at 6'2 215.  Great against the run, not so much a great coverage player.  What we really needed was playmaking centerfielder, but some have suggested that he will put on 10 - 15 lbs. and transition to ILB.  MIght work.

6)  Jaylen Samuels RB/HB/FB/TE - A

Versatile player who can do it all.  Was ultra productive in NC State's offense playing everywhere, even throwing TDs.  He's got Le'veon Bell-like talent in the sense that he is just a great football player that can run the ball, block, and perform well in the passing game too.  He might end up being a huge steal when all is said and done.

7)  Joshua Frazier DT - B- 

Some think we could have gotten him as an UDFA given that Alabama's former DLine coach is now our DLine coach in Karl Dunbar.  I trust with his insider knowledge that Frazier has some good potential.  He was crowded out, to some degree, in a talented DLine rotation there in Bama.  Dunbar made a tounge-in-cheek comparison between Frazier and Jefferson from Fast Times at Ridgemont High, for those of you who are old enough to remember that.  He fills an important need as backup NT behind Javon Hargrave, likely knocking Daniel McCullers off the roster.

Overall I give it a C+.  A few nice adds, but nothing to do backflips over.  Hoping and trusting the FO knows more than the average fan here.  

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I am just going to pretend that we took Rudolph in the 1st and Edmunds in the 3rd. Makes me feel better :)

Overall draft grade: B-

1.28 - Mason Rudolph, QB = B.  He was a bit of a reach here, but likely not going to be there in the 2nd round. He was on par with the other QBs taken in the 1st, and with so many taken, you just had to grab him here.

2.28 - James Washington, WR = C. Going back to the same school for Rudolph's receiver seemed a bit lazy to me. Justin Reid, S, was on the board, and a much bigger need, IMO. Still, you have to look at Washington's numbers, so not a complete waste.

3.12 - Terrell Edmunds, S = B+. Very good value here, and my Justin Reid comment aside above, not a bad pick. Needed the position and who is to who will be a better pro.

3.28 - Chucks Okorafor, OT = D. When the GM struggles to pronounce the name, it just screams bad pick to me. Hopefully, this is someone Munchak asked for. I'm just not convinced this player was going to be off the board in the 7th round.

5.11 - Marcus Allen - S = B. Solid pick in the 5th. Passing on Ronnie Harrison in the 3rd really stung, but this is a decent consolation.

5.28 - Jaylen Samuels - ? = INC. This is a luxury pick, IMO. I don't see a spot on the team for him, unless you're cutting Nix. I can't really give this guy a grade yet. If he makes the squad, then give him a B. If he goes PS, D, if he gets cut, F. I think Kylie Fitts was worth a flyer here instead of a hybrid FB/TE/RB.

7.28 - Joshua Frazier - DT = B. You have the former Alabama DL coach, so you give him a player he knows. I like the pick, and it kind of makes up for the reach in the 3rd.

 

This draft is typical for the Steelers. They pick a lot of guys that make you scratch your head, especially considering who was available. I expect 4-5 guys to make the squad this year, and then a couple cut next year. Hopefully, Rudolph is a solid QB in a couple years to take over from Ben.

 

 

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If you don't think Samuels can beat Touissant for the 3rd RB role you're crazy. He can handle that role and contribute in other ways as well. No he isn't the blocker Nix is but Nix isn't the dynamic player Samuels is. Keep Nix if you want. I know some of us may view Frenchy as a young energy guy. He's 27. Cut him. Again. 

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Maybe I am just generally a more positive person, but I do not hate this draft as much as a lot of you guys.  Here is my take.

 

 

Terrell Edmunds S VT - B

I get it... not a huge mock drafted player.  No one in the mock community saw this coming.  This surprised weekend mockers as well as the Kipers and McShays of the world.  Not what anyone of us would have done, myself included.  BUT--the more work I do on this guy, the more I am digging the pick.  For me, I think that we think too much about "is he a FS or SS" or how he will fit in the depth chart.  Go beyond that.  The top 4 ILB were gone.  We tried to trade up and didn't make it.  Plan B had to go into effect.  Colbert spelled it out... no one is left to replace Shazier, so we move on to our biggest problem... secondary on passing downs.  Nickel and dime defense.  The crap we have been complaining about all year.  Just think... Davis, Burnett and Edmunds will be in on dime situations now.  I'd rather have that than Mitchell, Gay and Davis.  Let camp figure out who is FS, SS and money backer.  The kid is a + athlete, high character, bloodines and pSPARQ wonder.  I'm gonna love to watch him develop.

Might I also add that the same guys on here that are complaining about this pick would have complained about Reid (who went in the 3rd), Bates or any of the pass rushers for the same thing... lack of playing time.  Would Landry have put Dupree on the bench???... no.

James Washington WR OKS - B

Fits the need, fits the Steelers model.  Good blocker, great route runner, high character, smart player.  Not elite speed, but is a polished and pure WR.  Kinda the anti-Sammie Coates, Martavias Bryant players.  Not who I would have taken, but the position I would have taken.  Not gonna lie, I fell in love with Chark this process, but I am OK with JW.

Mason Rudolph QB OKS - A-

Love the value here.  3rd round for a guy that we wanted in the first.  This all depends on if you believe that he is Ben's successor.  If you do, this is an A+ pick.  If he is a career backup, this is a C.  I think that he has a GREAT chance of being Ben's successor.  I will hedge my bets with an A-, only because there is not a concensus that he is that good.  I love the situation, and I love watching him play.

Chukwuma Okorafor OT WMU - C
This is the one that I don't get.  If we take a OL, it had to be Foster's replacement, right??  Not a project tackle who will need 2-3 years.  I wanted someone to push Hawkins NOW, not 2 years from now.  I mean, I like the idea of getting ready for life after Gilbert, BUT... I would have felt better about a more finished product like Noteboom or a guard like Teller that could have maybe been a future Foster.

Marcus Allen S/LB PSU - B-

Confusing pick that I like but not with our depth chart.  LIke the player as a box safety that can tackle.  But, we have 5 of those guys already.  Bigger than Edmunds so maybe a conversion prospect, but still a questionable pick with no edges taken.

Jaylen Samuels RB/WR/FB NC State - A

I cannot rave about this pick enough.  Just a weapon.  Adding layers to the offense.  Not a replacement for anyone... he is what he is.  Big RB, Slot WR, H back, KR... this guy, man.  I think that this opens up so much for our offense as long as he is used correctly.  I can imagine the redzone packages with him in the game now.  It is just sick.

Joshua Frazier NT Alabama - B-

See the need and the fit.  Would have liked more production and more reps, but that is fine.  Will get McCullers off the roster.
 

UDFA: B

  1. Matthew Thomas ILB FSU
  2. Quandree Henderson WR Pitt 
  3. Trey Johnson CB Villanova 

These three have legit shots at making the 53 AND being players.  Thomas will pass Galambos and Kelsey right away and Fort soon.  He is a freak.  Henderson eliminates all need for Eli Rogers to hang around.  Johnson is every bit as good as some of the bodies we already have and I'd love it if he took out Sensabaugh.

  1. Patrick Morris C TCU 
  2. Olasunkanmi Adeniyi OLB Toledo
  3. Greg Gilmore DE LSU

These 3 have work to do, but I can see them on if things break right.  If Morris stays healthy, Matt Feiler may be in trouble.  Ola can push Adams and Hugenin for a spot, and Gilmore can take out Hooks but will have some issues with Walton.

 

  1. Parker Cothren DT PSU 
  2. Jarvion Franklin RB WMU
  3. Pharoah McKever TE NC State 
  4. Ikenna Nwokeji OL Elon 
  5. Chris Schleuger G UAB 
  6. Jamar Summers CB UCONN
  7. Kendal Vicker DE Tennessee

They are guys... 

Overall - B
Doesn't have the deep centerfielder we all want, or the Shazier replacement, but I think we worked around it in a way.  With Bostic as Shazier-lite and Edmunds as the upgraded Willie Gay in nickel/dime, I like it.  Washington will let us get AB in the slot more, and Mason has a chance to be the future.  Add in depth/special teams of Allen, the project OT, the weapon and some real shots at UDFA, I like the draft.  I do not LOVE it, but I do like it.

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Posted (edited)
18 minutes ago, Chieferific said:

If you don't think Samuels can beat Touissant for the 3rd RB role you're crazy. He can handle that role and contribute in other ways as well. No he isn't the blocker Nix is but Nix isn't the dynamic player Samuels is. Keep Nix if you want. I know some of us may view Frenchy as a young energy guy. He's 27. Cut him. Again. 

100% agree.  Nix and Samuels both make the roster.  Ridley/Connor as the backup pure RB, then have a FB and a weapon.

BTW, I wonder what # Samuels will wear??

Edited by kurgan

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7 minutes ago, Chieferific said:

If you don't think Samuels can beat Touissant for the 3rd RB role you're crazy. He can handle that role and contribute in other ways as well. No he isn't the blocker Nix is but Nix isn't the dynamic player Samuels is. Keep Nix if you want. I know some of us may view Frenchy as a young energy guy. He's 27. Cut him. Again. 

I don't think it is TBH.  Like I said, Samuels is a jack of all trades guy.  He's never really been a tote the rock a ton guy, not really a WR, not really a FB.  And I'll be shocked if he ends up at TE at all due to size (He's smaller than Bell and Juju FWIW).  He's the type of player we've struggled to not just find a roster spot for but find a role for as well lately.  I don't really see that changing all that much TBH.

RB depth: Bell-Connor-Ridley

WR depth: Brown-Juju-Washington-DHB-Hunter-Rogers

TE depth: James-McDonald-XMan

FB Depth: Nix

That's been the extent of what we carry.  I think best case scenario for him might be to make it while Rogers goes to the IR.  Or maybe in place of Connor while he starts on the PUP list for the season.  Just hard to find a way for him to supplant someone unless they go shocker a bit with the depth chart.

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18 minutes ago, Chieferific said:

If you don't think Samuels can beat Touissant for the 3rd RB role you're crazy. He can handle that role and contribute in other ways as well. No he isn't the blocker Nix is but Nix isn't the dynamic player Samuels is. Keep Nix if you want. I know some of us may view Frenchy as a young energy guy. He's 27. Cut him. Again. 

He doesn't block like Nix, but no one is asking him to.  If he can pick up the pass rush on 3rd down and protect Ben, that's where we need him most.   Agree 1000% he will be one of the 3 RBs on the roster, NOT including Nix.  (FB)  Au revoir, Frenchy.  

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1 hour ago, Chieferific said:

If you don't think Samuels can beat Touissant for the 3rd RB role you're crazy. He can handle that role and contribute in other ways as well. No he isn't the blocker Nix is but Nix isn't the dynamic player Samuels is. Keep Nix if you want. I know some of us may view Frenchy as a young energy guy. He's 27. Cut him. Again. 

I'll just say that I think he is going to struggle against NFL talent, and there really is not a role on this team for him. Sure, he can beat Touissant, maybe. That is not a sterling endorsement. My problem is more with the position in this circumstance. Given the draft that played out to this point, I really think a LB made more sense.

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2 hours ago, kurgan said:

100% agree.  Nix and Samuels both make the roster.  Ridley/Connor as the backup pure RB, then have a FB and a weapon.

BTW, I wonder what # Samuels will wear??

I actually forgot about Ridley. That complicates things a bit. But I still think Samuels makes the roster at some other player's expense. One player offering so many different things is a hard cut. 

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Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, Chieferific said:

I actually forgot about Ridley. That complicates things a bit. But I still think Samuels makes the roster at some other player's expense. One player offering so many different things is a hard cut. 

TBH, Ridley is JAG.  I mean, he did some great stuff, but gimme Bell, Connor, Samuel and Rosie all day.  Ridley can hang around and be there if someone gets hurt.

 

Hunter can go too... not sure what value he brings.  Would rather see Griffey get the reps, or Henderson to see if he can play.

Edited by kurgan

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