2023 NFL Draft
Steelers Draft Georgia TE Darnell Washington in 3rd Round
PITTSBURGH — The Pittsburgh Steelers have selected Georgia tight end Darnell Washington in the third round of the 2023 NFL Draft.
The Steelers traded down from pick No. 80 to No. 93 in the third round, but still had Washington available to them. A 6-foot-7, 265 pound tight end from Las Vegas, Washington excelled as a big, athletic blocker for the national champion Bulldogs.
Washington was part of the same Georgia recruiting class as Steelers first-round pick Broderick Jones and played alongside him at times along the Georgia offensive line.
Washington played four games in 2020, making seven catches for 166 yards. In 2021, he played in eight games, making 10 catches for 154 yards and one touchdown. He saw his role greatly increase as a junior in 2022, when he played in 15 games, and caught 28 passes for 454 yards and two scores.
Washington was expected to be an early second-round pick, but slid down draft boards after an injury issues cropped up. He had a broken foot in 2021, suffered an ankle injury in the national championship game, and there was also concern about a knee issue among NFL staffs.
With the Steelers, Washington should be able to move Pat Freiermuth into the slot to be a more consistent receiving threat while excelling as a blocker and developing his receiving skills.