Another day, another mock draft projecting Alabama running back Najee Harris to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
This time it is ESPN’s Todd McShay, who has the Steelers selecting Harris with the No. 24-overall pick in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft.
“With James Conner heading toward free agency, the run game could use a punch,” McShay wrote. “Harris is that and more, showcasing speed, size, decisiveness and ball security as a rusher, as well as upside as a receiver and pass-protector. Pittsburgh’s offense fell off a good deal in the second half last season, and the top back still on the roster is Benny Snell Jr., who managed just 3.3 yards per carry last year. Harris averaged 6.0 over four seasons at Alabama, and his 26 rushing touchdowns in 2020 led college football.”
Harris was outstanding during his senior campaign in Tuscaloosa, rushing for 1,466 yards and 26 touchdowns. He also improved as a receiver, catching 43 passes for 425 yards and four more scores in 2020.
Not only did Harris win the National Championships with the Crimson Tide in January, but he was also named a unanimous All-American and awarded the Doak Walker Award as the nation’s top running back.
Selecting Harris would provide a significant boost to the Steelers’ run game, which was the worst in football last season. Pittsburgh averaged just 84.4 yards per game and 3.6 yards per attempt in 2020.
The 2021 NFL Draft kicks off Thursday, April 29 in Cleveland.