2021 NFL draft: Steelers go off script in first round of new mock draft

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Curt Popejoy
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If you look at 50 2021 mock draft, the vast majority of them will have the Pittsburgh Steelers drafting an offensive lineman, running back or quarterback. But The Pro Football Network put out a new three-round mock draft and went way off script for the Steelers in the first round.

They have the Steelers drafting former Minnesota wide receiver Rashod Batemen. Here is their rationale for the pick.

The needs keep piling up for the Pittsburgh Steelers, but one of the more underrated areas of concern is wide receiver. JuJu Smith-Schuster will almost certainly not be retained in free agency, and the only holdovers are Chase Claypool, Diontae Johnson, and James Washington. All three of those receivers have starting experience, but by the same virtue, all three are lacking in certain areas and underwhelm as a collective unit.

Honestly, this makes no sense. Adding Bateman isn’t going to fix the Steelers offense and would struggle to even see any reps as a rookie. It is unfortunate JuJu Smith-Schuster is likely leaving in free agency but drafting a wide receiver in the first round would be the epitome of a panic move.

The rest of the draft is rock solid for the Steelers. Former Notre Dame offensive tackle Liam Eichenberg is a solid starter prospect and center Quinn Meinerz was the darling of the Senior Bowl out of Wisconsin-Whitewater.