This week we are taking a look at the caliber of player the Pittsburgh Steelers could get with their first five picks in the NFL draft with a review of recent history.
Next up is the Steelers’ fourth-round pick, No. 121 overall.
Here is look at the last five players taken in that slot:
2014: LB Carl Bradford, Green Bay Packers: The Arizona State product took the equivalent of a redshirt year as he made the transition from defensive end to outside linebacker. Bradford did not play in any games last season and it is way too early to draw any conclusions about his career. He will need to make a significant jump in his second season to be part of the Packers’ long-range plans.
2013: C Khaled Holmes, Indianapolis Colts: The Southern Cal product made his first two starts last season and appeared in five games. Holmes, the brother-in-law of Steelers safety Troy Polamalu, still is trying to establish himself as a regular in the Colts’ offensive line rotation.
2012: WR Keshawn Martin, Houston Texans: Martin’s spot on the roster is precarious after he averaged just 6.2 yards per punt return last season. The Michigan State product has to be more than a serviceable return man since he has never been more than an afterthought in the Texans’ passing game. Martin caught just six passes for 78 yards last season and better make a move as a receiver in 2015.
2011: S Chris Prosinski, Jacksonville Jaguars: The Wyoming product made nine starts in 48 games with the Jaguars before getting waived/injured last September. The Eagles signed Prosinski and he recorded seven tackles in eight games.
2010: LB Keenan Clayton, Philadelphia Eagles: Clayton lasted just two seasons in Philadelphia before the Eagles released him. He bounced around, spending a season with the Oakland Raiders and signing with the Arizona Cardinals. Clayton, who has 50 career NFL tackles, did not make the Cardinals’ 53-man roster last season and spent a couple of weeks in the Canadian Football League before getting released.
Analysis: The above picks don’t inspire a lot of optimism that the Steelers will find an impact player with their pick in the fourth round. Then again, they landed wide receiver Martavis Bryant with the 118th overall pick last year and he caught eight touchdowns despite not dressing for the first six games of the season.