5 Worst-Case Scenarios for Pittsburgh Steelers' First-Round Draft Pick

By Cody Strahm

5 Worst-Case Scenarios for Pittsburgh Steelers' First-Round Draft Pick

Steelers GM
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The Pittsburgh Steelers need to get the 2014 NFL Draft right. They're a competitive team as is, but need the influx of some talented youth next week in order to return to their winning ways after back-to-back .500 finishes. Here are five scenarios every Steelers fan should hope doesn't transpire in the first round.

5. Dee Ford, DE, Auburn

Dee Ford
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5. Dee Ford, DE, Auburn

Dee Ford
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The Steelers could use another pass rusher to complement Jason Worilds and Jarvis Jones, but don't need to reach to fill the need. Auburn's Dee Ford may go in the late first round, but likely only to a team desperate enough for pass rushing help to ignore Ford's second-round grade. The Steelers should look for a rush linebacker later in the draft while hoping Jones takes some big strides in his second season.

4. Jordan Matthews, WR, Vanderbilt

jordan Matthews
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4. Jordan Matthews, WR, Vanderbilt

Jordan Matthews
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The Steelers are in need of a big-body receiver to bolster their current corps. Although Jordan Matthews is a long shot to be their pick in the first round, there is some buzz surrounding him as a potential first-round prospect and the Steelers are one of the teams expected to be in the market for a pass catcher with size. Taking him at No. 15 overall would likely be the biggest reach of the draft, though.

3. Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Florida State

Kelvin Benjamin
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3. Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Florida State

Kelvin Benjamin
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Like Matthews, Florida State's Kelvin Benjamin is the body type the Steelers' current group of pass catchers is missing. Also like Matthews, however, Benjamin would be a significant reach in the middle of the first round. Benjamin has a massive-catch radius and impressive body control, but he'll have a difficult time separating from NFL cornerbacks.

2. Louis Nix, NT, Notre Dame

Louis Nix III
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2. Louis Nix, NT, Notre Dame

Louis Nix III
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After struggling against the run in 2013, the Steelers may target a double-team demanding nose tackle like Notre Dame's Louis Nix in the first round. However, last year's starting nose, Steve McLendon, only played a little over 30 percent of Pittsburgh's defensive snaps. Thus, a nose tackle wouldn't provide the Steelers with much value in the first round.

1. Justin Gilbert and Darqueze Dennard Both Gone

Justin Gilbert
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1. Justin Gilbert and Darqueze Dennard Both Gone

Justin Gilbert
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The Steelers' top need entering the draft is cornerback. With the No. 15 overall pick there is a good chance either Oklahoma State's Justin Gilbert or Michigan State's Darqueze Dennard -- the top two corners of the class -- will be available. In a pass-happy league, though, it wouldn't be surprising if both are snagged within the top 14 picks. That would be the worst-case scenario for the Steelers, who would probably like to nab one of the two.

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