NFL.com’s Bucky Brooks has linked a new name to the Pittsburgh Steelers late in the process in his latest mock 2021 NFL Draft.
Brooks, in the third version of his mock draft published on Tuesday, has the Steelers selecting Kentucky linebacker Jamin Davis with the No. 24 overall pick in the first round.
Davis, a 6-foot-4, 234-pound linebacker, led Kentucky with 102 tackle and had four tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks a forced fumble, a fumble recovery and three interceptions, one of which he returned for a touchdown. He played middle linebacker in Kentucky’s 4-3 scheme and would probably fit as an inside linebacker with the Steelers.
Davis’s stock rose dramatically since the end of his senior year, and has risen from a late Day Two pick to a late first round pick in many mock drafts.
Brooks had other popular Steelers picks Najee Harris, Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, Zaven Collins all Landon Dickerson all off the board before the Pittsburgh selection.
“Adding speed and athleticism to an already-fast defense would give the Steelers a decided advantage over opponents opting to spread it out,” Brooks wrote. “Davis is a playmaker with instincts, awareness and ball-hawk ability.”
The Steelers don’t have a pressing need at inside linebacker with Devin Bush entering his third NFL season, veteran Vince Williams back on a one-year deal and backups Robert Spillane, Marcus Allen and Ulysees Gilbert III all set to return.
But Williams will be 32 this year and the Steelers could use a potential future replacement, as well as a player that could move Bush into more of a coverage role in passing downs.
Brooks had the Steelers taking Missouri inside linebacker Nick Bolton in the first two versions of his mock draft.