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Senior Bowl

Steelers Coach Isaac Williams Getting Inside Scoop on Senior Bowl OL Prospects



Steelers aOL Isaac Williams

MOBILE, Ala. — The Pittsburgh Steelers have an inside agent when it comes to the American Team offensive line at the 2024 Senior Bowl.

American Team coach Isaac Williams is the Steelers’ assistant offensive line coach, and while his charges are taking to Mobile this week to attempt to learn and soak up the NFL   experience of their coaching staff, he is reporting back to the Pittsburgh brass about each and every one of them.

“It allows you to understand how their minds tick,” Williams explained to Nick Farabaugh of Steelers Now after his team’s first practice session on Tuesday. “What they want to know. Are they eager to learn? Do they want correction? Do they want information? Are they trying to grow and get better? That’s one of the things you can’t get off the tape. …

“I believe it just gives you an inside look at who that individual us, spending time with them, whether that’s formal or informal, being able to spend some time with these guys as their coach this week, you just get to learn some things about them, the intangibles that you might not see in their college tape.”

The NFL Draft evaluation process is a lengthy one, and the Senior Bowl is just one step, but it is a crucial one. Unlike the combine or pro days, Williams is overseeing actual live football reps in Mobile. That’s something that is hard to replicate.

“You get a chance to see them play football,” Williams said. “You love the testing, you love the pro days, you love the combine. But what the Senior Bowl gives you is live contact, 1 on 1s. You see how they compete. You see how they respond to getting beat, because that’s a part of the game, too. These guys are doing a really good job and that’s what makes the Senior Bowl so important in this evaluation process.”

The linemen that Williams is coaching on the American Team include Oklahoma tackle Tyler Guyton, UConn guard Christian Haynes, Maryland talkie Delmar Glaze and Missouri tackle Javon Foster. 

Last season, Steelers outside linebackers coach Denzel Martin worked with the defensive linemen and secondary coach Grady Brown was a defensive coordinator at the Senior Bowl. The Steelers ended up drafting nose tackle Keeanu Benton from their team. Williams knows he could be mentoring a player this week that will be a part of his position room next fall.

“Those guys gave great information because they spent time last year down here,” William said. “Talking to Grady talking to Denzel, just talking about the week, how to prepare for it, how you should get into it, the adjustments you might have to make, it was great. You have to lean on good guys like that.”

Williams was quick to credit Steelers general manager Omar Khan and head coach Mike Tomlin for pushing for him to get the opportunity. Before 2022, the Senior Bowl brought two entire coaching staffs from selected NFL teams to Mobile. Now, it’s an all-star coaching staff, with coordinators chosen as head coaches, positions coaches working as coordinators and junior coaches like Williams working as position coaches.

“Through the selection process, they thought I was deserving enough to put my name in the hat and the committee selected me. However all of that takes place, I’m appreciative of it. When I found out about it, I was juiced and ready to go.”

Williams is diving in to his draft scout role with the Steelers, but make no mistake about it, he’s enjoying coaching these linemen, too.

“This is what I love to do. I’m enjoying every single moment of it.”