With Sunday’s loss to division rival Baltimore, the Pittsburgh Steelers are slotted to select with the 14th pick in the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft. That’s one spot better than they were tabbed at this time last week.
With four games to go, Pittsburgh will play evenly-matched contests with Carolina (5-8), Las Vegas (5-8), and Cleveland (5-8). The Steelers also have one more clash scheduled with the Ravens, who they played close in Sunday’s defeat.
Wherever the Steelers end up choosing, they have options as to which position they’d like to upgrade first. There are needs on both lines, linebacker, cornerback, and — if they see someone they really like early on — wide receiver.
There was a change near the top of the order this week, as hapless Denver — which has trudged through a disappointing campaign — was beaten for the fifth time in a row. Having one of the league’s strongest defenses, the Broncos would be 9-4 and in the thick of the AFC playoff race if they scored 20 points each time out. Instead, their choice — which was given to Seattle as part of the offseason deal for quarterback Russell Wilson — sits second overall.
With how Wilson has played this year and a few signal-callers figuring to be taken early, Denver might be wishing it had its pick back. In fact, three of the top five turns in the draft at this point are owned by teams contending for the postseason — the Seahawks, Detroit (from the Los Angeles Rams), and Philadelphia (from New Orleans) — because of prior trades.
Chicago slid back to third in the order, which is something to watch because the Steelers own the Bears’ second-round pick. That pick is now No. 33 overall. Houston, which has stayed at the top of the draft for a good bit of time now, nearly knocked off in-state rival Dallas yesterday. Luckily for both sides, the Cowboys pulled out a late victory.