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2024 NFL Draft

Steelers Offensive Line Overhaul Praised: ‘A Serious Strength!’

The Pittsburgh Steelers revamped their entire offensive line and turned it into a huge strength in the 2024 NFL Draft.

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Pittsburgh Steelers OT Troy Fautanu
Pittsburgh Steelers offensive tackle Troy Fatuanu at rookie minicamp, Friday, May 10, 2024 - Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

When the Pittsburgh Steelers took the field against the San Francisco 49ers in Week 1 of the 2023 season, their starting offensive linemen were, from left to right, Dan Moore Jr., Isaac Seumalo, Mason Cole, James Daniels, and Chuks Okorafor. But when they take the field against the Atlanta Falcons to open the 2024 season, it seems likely the team will start Troy Fautanu, Zach Frazier, and Broderick Jones in three of those five spots, with the guards not changing.

Pittsburgh’s drastic overhaul along the offensive line has become universally lauded. It’s not often a team goes this hard in on one positional group, but general manager Omar Khan flooded the offensive line in the 2024 NFL Draft, capturing three different players in the first four rounds. What was once considered a weakness on the team, perhaps its biggest weakness, is now looking to become a strength with serious upside for the future. And USA Today agrees.

Pittsburgh Steelers OL Zach Frazier Troy Fautanu

Pittsburgh Steelers offensive linemen Zach Frazier and Troy Fautanu during rookie minicamp at UPMC Rooney Sports Complex on May 10, 2024. — Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

“The Steelers went all-in here, selecting Washington tackle Troy Fautanu with the 20th overall pick, West Virginia center Zach Frazier with the 51st overall pick in the second round, and South Dakota State guard Mason McCormick with the 119th overall pick in the fourth round. Add in veteran guard Isaac Seumalo (one of two bright spots on that line last season), and 2023 first-round pick Broderick Jones (he was the other), and all of a sudden, Pittsburgh’s primary weakness outside of that pesky quarterback thing becomes a serious strength,” they wrote.

So, why was it so crucial for the Steelers to make such a move? Russell Wilson and Justin Fields were the top two quarterbacks in time to throw a season ago. They are off-script magicians who generally like to create that magic and make plays with their legs. But that requires time and protection, especially since Fields and Wilson run into sacks.

So, Fautanu and Fraizer should help that in 2024. More than that, the run game must be efficient. Wilson’s lost a bit of juice as an athlete, and Fields is an inconsistent processor. So, keeping them on schedule and ahead of the sticks will lessen the load and mitigate weaknesses. As such, if these picks work out, there is little reason for Khan not to be praised for his approach to the NFL Draft.