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Steelers draft capsule

April 22, 2013
By Buck Frank (bfrank@altoonamirror.com) , The Altoona Mirror
The following is the fifth of seven position-by-position 2013 Pittsburgh Steelers NFL draft analyses: CORNERBACKS On the roster: Ike Taylor, Cortez Allen, William Gay, Curtis Brown, Josh Victorian, DeMarcus Van Dyke, Justin King, Ross Ventrone Last six drafts: The Steelers have enjoyed decent success selecting corners in the third-fifth rounds — Gay (2007, fifth), Keenan Lewis (2009, third), Allen (2011, fourth) and Brown (2011, third). Others that haven’t worked out as well include Joe Burnett (2009, fifth round), Crezdon Butler (2010, fifth round) and Terrence Frederick?(2012, seventh) Top cornerbacks available: Dee Milliner, Alabama; Xavier Rhodes, Florida State; Desmond Trufant, Washington; Johnthan Banks, Mississippi State; Darius Slay, Mississippi State The Steelers might take: Tyrann Mathieu, LSU; B.W. Webb, William & Mary; Dwayne Gratz, Connecticut; Will Davis, Utah State; Leon McFadden, San Diego State; Sanders Commings, Georgia Analysis: Considering other positions on the team, the Steelers are in good shape at cornerback with the development of Allen and the re-signing of Gay. They won’t go after the top cornerbacks in the draft but might look for one in the fourth or fifth round, and they expect their corners to be physical. If they take a corner, like Davis or Commings, it might be with the idea of slotting him as a backup free safety. SAFETIES On the roster: Troy Polamalu, Ryan Clark, Robert Golden, Damon Cromartie-Smith, Isaiah Green Last six drafts: With Polamalu and Clark, the Steelers haven’t had to pick many safeties. The only one recently was Ryan Mundy (2008, sixth round), who just signed with the New York Giants. Top safeties available: Kenny Vaccaro, Texas; Eric Reid, LSU; Matt Elam, Florida; Jonathan Cyprien, Florida International; T.J. McDonald, Southern Cal The Steelers might take: Vaccaro; Reid; McDonald; Shamarko Thomas, Syracuse; Duke Williams, Nevada Analysis: The injury-prone Polamalu just turned 32 on Friday, Clark will turn 34 during the regular season, and the Steelers lost Mundy and Will Allen during the offseason. Safety is definitely a position the Steelers need to address, and they could very well go after Vaccaro or Reid with their first pick. Both are good at coming up and stopping the run, much like Clark. If those two aren’t available with the 17th pick, the Steelers could go for the second or third tier of physical safeties, like Thomas or Williams, in the middle rounds. Coming Tuesday: Running backs — Buck Frank
 
 
 

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