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2024 NFL Draft

Insider Thinks Steelers Would Probably Pass on Olu Fashanu if Available at 20th Overall

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Steelers 2024 NFL Draft Olu Fashanu

It seems like an unlikely scenario that Penn State offensive tackle Olu Fashanu would drop in the first round. But, if he’s available at 20th overall, the Pittsburgh Steelers might just run their card up to the podium and select the highly-touted Nittany Lion.

PFF’s new mock draft had the Steelers selecting Fashanu at 20th overall. They are not the only one who mocked Fashanu to the Steelers in recent weeks, with Bruce Feldman and Nick Wright doing the same thing two weeks ago.

“After grabbing Broderick Jones, another offensive tackle, in the first round last year, I think Pittsburgh will pick between a tackle or Oregon strongman center Jackson Powers-Johnson. There are some good options at tackle between JC Latham, Amarius Mims and Tyler Guyton, but the hunch is that the Steelers grab Fashanu, a bright, long, gifted big man. He was inconsistent last year but has intriguing potential at 6-6 and 312 pounds. At Penn State, where he was a team captain, he went up against many elite speed rushers every day at practice. Given his attitude and intelligence, he’s a good bet to continue to add polish to his game,” Feldman wrote.

Ray Fittipaldo of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has a countering opinion on the Steelers landing Fashanu if the opportunity presents itself, however. He thinks Fashanu is more of a left tackle and Pittsburgh needs a right tackle.

“I think they would probably pass. He’s a left tackle. Their desire is to move Broderick Jones to the left side,” Fittipaldo said on 93.7 The Fan. “That’s definitely something they want to do in short order. I don’t know exactly when it’s gonna happen, but Fashanu isn’t a guy who, it seems like, has a lot of right tackle capability.”

General manger Omar Khan said earlier this offseason, at the 2024 NFL Combine, that the Pittsburgh Steelers still see Broderick Jones’ future at left tackle, but head coach Mike Tomlin declared at the 2024 NFL owner’s meetings last month that his position for the 2024 season is very much still up in the air.

“To be determined,” Tomlin said. “We’ve just got so much ahead of us in terms of player acquisition. Where any specific player ends up is subject to who else is on our roster and the make up of it.”

Spanning 2020 to 2023, the 6-foot-5 tackle was a stabilizing presence on the Nittany Lions offensive line the past two seasons. The team captain kept his quarterback off the grass on 646 snaps, an incredible run of consistency. Fashanu took home the Rimington-Pace Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year award and first-team All-Big Ten honors in 2023 by conference coaches after being second-team last year.

To say the least, Fashanu is a projected Top-10 pick, and if the Steelers could pick him 20th overall, that would be a heist. The four tackles mentioned earlier in the article seem likelier at that spot. Still, if Fashanu experiences a fall, and in some mocks, he has fallen farther than most would think, it is not hard to believe that the Steelers would be highly interested in what Fashanu brings to the table. Fashanu is just that good, and he would be a plug-and-play starter for Pittsburgh from the moment he comes into the building.