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2024 NFL Draft

Ladd McConkey Could be Sleeper Pick for Steelers at 20

Potential Pittsburgh Steelers target Ladd McConkey earned a potential Antonio Brown comparison from Dane Brugler.



Pittsburgh Steelers 2024 NFL Draft Prospect Georgia WR Ladd McConkey

The Pittsburgh Steelers will look to add a wide receiver at some point in the 2024 NFL Draft. One of those who is a top route runner in the class is Georgia’s Ladd McConkey. Pittsburgh was at his pro day, which could be a sign of interest from the Steelers.

Dane Brugler loves McConkey’s game, and at his ceiling, he believes that he could have some comparisons to former Steelers star Antonio Brown.

“This is going to be unfair, but I’m going to say his ceiling is like an Antonio Brown,” Brugler said on the Cover 1 Podcast. “The inside-outside versatility, the ability to catch and run. Again, we’re talking ceiling. We’re talking everything goes right, he stays healthy, he hits. Evertying goes right, that’s the type of player we’re talking about. I understand that’s lofty, but that’s ceiling. The chances of hitting that ceiling? Probably not super high, but I at least think he has that type of ability because he’s super talented.”

On Thursday, Peter Schrager mentioned McConkey as a sleeper pick for the Steelers at 20th overall. As crazy as that seems, it might happen.

“They could very well get the fourth wide receiver in this draft,” Schrager said. “You have the big three and then I’ve spoken to some teams, and some teams love Brian Thomas Jr. out of LSU and then, I’m telling you, there is a big love for Ladd McConkey as potentially the fourth wide receiver in this draft as crazy as that might sound.”

McConkey was a walk-on at Georgia, but came onto the scene early anyway as a redshirt freshman in 2021, when he caught 31 passes for 447 yards and scored six total touchdowns. He became a starter in 2022, when he scored nine time and had 762 receiving yards, second only to Brock Bowers on the team.

McConkey ran extremely well at the 2024 NFL Combine, raising his stock in the process. He posted a 4.39-second 40-yard dash, a 3.97-second shuttle and a 10-foot-4 broad jump. His Relative Athletic Score is a 9.34 out of 10.

His current average draft position at NFL Mock Draft Database is No. 33 overall, putting him just outside the first round and in between the Steelers’ first pick at No. 20 and second at No. 51. He could be an option if the Steelers choose to trade back into the later part of, or just out of the first round. But I’m not sure I buy the 20th overall buzz.