Regardless of my feelings about the selection of Miami cornerback Artie Burns in the first round of last night’s draft, the Steelers could have done something that served them a whole lot better in my opinion.
I was told just before the Steelers went on the clock that Denver had contacted them about moving up in the draft. The conversation about draft compensation didn’t last long and the Steelers made their pick. Denver would eventually trade with Seattle who was scheduled to pick right after us at 26.
The Broncos sent their 31st overall pick to Seattle along with a third round pick (94th overall) in exchange for Seattle’s pick at 26. I’ve been told the Steelers were actually offered more but declined but let’s say that isn’t true. Let’s move forward on the premise that General Manager Kevin Colbert was offered the exact same thing by Denver that Seattle ultimately accepted.
Colbert and company went into this draft with the normal seven picks but no fifth rounder because of the Brandon Boykin debacle. He knew as we all did that finding a way to get that selection back as well as potentially a couple of more was to be a major goal in this draft but apparently the Denver offer wasn’t enough.
It was easily enough and here’s why.
Artie Burns was still going to be on the board at 31. Can I guarantee that? No, but I feel pretty damn good about it. If they felt so strongly about him being their guy then didn’t they have to know he’d still be there? He was rated by most experts as a second round guy anyway and with the draft incredibly deep at the position, would losing out on him be so freaking bad?
Just as importantly, not only would the Steelers have regained that lost fifth round pick but it would have been a selection in the top 100 on top of that. I don’t know about you but this just screams “do it!!!”
For all I know Artie Burns could develop into the Pro Bowl corner the Steelers haven’t had in a long, long time but I’d rather take my chances on the trade they turned down especially in this draft.
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