Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert, who has been in NFL scouting since 1984 and with the team since 2000, couldn't help but gush about this year's crop of talent
"I've been doing this 30 years," Colbert said, "this is the deepest draft I've ever seen."
A record 102 underclassmen entered this year's pool, which fattened up the talent level.
"We felt that way even before the underclassmen came in," Colbert said. "Our scouts were talking about the senior class being a pretty good class. You don't know what the junior class will be, so you try to predict what that will be."
Still, even with the bevy of underclassmen, there always is the worry about maturity.
"The juniors added into it make it a very talented group. With the juniors and redshirt sophomores, we are very cautiously optimistic about their emotional and physical readiness for this huge jump. Even though it's the most talented group I've seen, it's probably the most immature group.
"We have to be prepared for more player development-type programs to get the development out of these players."
Even with the potential for a few medium rare players in need of seasoning, Colbert can't help but appreciate just how much depth there is in this class — across the board.
"I can't see a position where there isn't more depth than there ever has been," he said. "You talk about interior offensive linemen, it's a solid group. Not as solid as maybe the tackles or receivers, but it's more solid than it has been in the past.
"It's exciting when you're picking players out of this group."
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