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2024 NFL Draft

Mike Tomlin Loved Roman Wilson Long Before Steelers Picked Him

Mike Tomlin loved Roman Wilson long before the Pittsburgh Steelers selected him in the 2024 NFL Draft in the third round.

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Pittsburgh Steelers WR Roman Wilson

MOBILE, Ala. and PITTSBURGH — Michigan wide receiver Roman Wilson lit up defensive backs all week at the Senior Bowl in Mobile. And that didn’t go unnoticed from anyone in the stands, but it stood out to one person right in the middle of the action — Mike Tomlin.

Back in January, before that sunny Wednesday’s practice, Wilson got a challenge from Tomlin. Tomlin pulled Wilson and Toledo CB Quinyon Mitchell aside, two of the most dominant players from day one of the Senior Bowl, and told them to go against each other throughout practice. They did just that, creating a highlight reel play for Wilson.

“It was cool, I had met him a few times before that. The one thing that really stood out he was telling me to go find out Quinyon Mitchell and just get reps at him and just go to work on him,” Wilson said. “And you know, that was one of the big things for me at the Senior Bowl. Just having a guy like Mike Tomlin, I know that he’s watching me and he wants me to just go against the best and ball out and that’s exactly what I went out there and did.”

Wilson and Mitchell both have met with the Steelers multiple times at the Senior Bowl. For Wilson, he has met with them twice at the event, and he could not help but reflect upon it now that he is with the Steelers.

“Meeting Mike Tomlin, I mean he’s a great guy,” Wilson said. “Sometimes at events like this, it’s crazy to see a guy like that come over to you. You wouldn’t think a guy like would talk to you. Then you realize you’re at this level. But he’s been awesome.”

Wilson is somewhat undersized, checking in at 5-foot-10 3/4 and 185 pounds, but showed excellent athleticism in pre-draft testing. He ran a 4.39-second 40-yard dash, a 4.07-second shuttle and 6.89-second three-cone drill at the 2024 NFL Combine, resulting in an 8.59 RAS out of 10.

Roman Wilson played both inside and outside at Michigan, spending 91% of his time in the slot as a junior in 2022 and 65.5% of his time in the slot last season, per Pro Football Focus.