They nailed their picks and filled needs in the process, making the Pittsburgh Steelers our big winners of the NFL Draft. Someone must win, even though there was no competition.
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Is it just us, or is everyone declaring the 2023 NFL Draft winners to simply be the teams that had multiple first-round picks? How ridiculous! In some fashion, the names that keep popping up as winning the draft are the Philadelphia Eagles, Seattle Seahawks, and Houston Texans. What do all three teams have in common? They selected more than one player in the first round. Is that all it comes down to? Talk about a cop out.
Don’t get us wrong, we love a lot of the picks these teams made. Philadelphia got the best talent in the draft at nine. Houston came away with two of the blue-chip prospects in a draft that had fewer than a dozen available, and Seattle managed to nab arguably the best corner and best wide receiver for a league that is predicated on passing and stopping the pass. These are good picks.
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But if acquiring the most/best talent in the draft is the prerequisite for winning the draft, couldn’t we have declared the winners before any of the picks were made?? We already knew which teams had the most draft capital. That’s why those answers are wrong.
Another way to read the draft is to find out who worked the room the best to get what it wanted. Specifically, we must address Arizona and Chicago. Both teams traded out of early draft slotting and seemed to still end up with the player they wanted all along. In each case, it was an offensive lineman who would not have been great value at their previous pick. That is smart drafting for teams not normally known for smart anything. Still, the best draft belongs to someone else. Congratulations to the Pittsburgh Steelers!
Pittsburgh Steelers Claim King Of The Hill
Todd Salem: Steelers Are Big Winners
I guess it comes down to how one wants to interpret what it means to grade a draft. Does the draft grading begin with pick one of round one, or do we also factor into the decisions that lead teams to having multiple picks? I’m more in the former group, and because of that, I think I like the Pittsburgh Steelers’ draft most of all.
Pittsburgh had two big needs heading into draft weekend, and it addressed both with premiere talents. The Steelers came away with one of the best tackles and one of the second tier of cornerback talents. They also added to the front seven on defense in the middle rounds and grabbed Darnell Washington at the end of round three. He could develop into a difference-making tight end despite going 50-75 spots after his peers at the position.
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No one actually knows who had a good draft at this point. It all comes down to who worked the best with what they had, didn’t reach too far, didn’t bungle any picks, didn’t panic. To me, that was Pittsburgh. Go Steelers!
Dan Salem: Why Not Pittsburgh?
Draft grades certainly are a foolish endeavor, but we must rate our teams regardless. I can’t fault teams that trade back to stockpile assets, nor do I commend teams who trade up and grab guys they love. Both could be excellent decisions, or utterly foolish. What did strike me as odd was how three of the four top picks went to quarterbacks. These were not the best players available and surely would have been around much later in round one, because the other teams picking later are set at quarterback already, otherwise they would have traded up. Surely Houston could have drafted Will Anderson at number two and then selected Stroud later. Is he such a talent that you can’t risk losing him? Anderson was, because the Texans traded up to get him with the third pick.
In recent years about one or two quarterbacks per draft have found longevity as NFL starters. Many have bounced around as very good backups, but few pan out. Considering this draft was full of many “very good” players, but few standout “great” ones, I would have expected teams to play it a bit safer. Not the case as moves were made for kickers and no one took a wide receiver until four in row were selected. Shenanigans!
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I love that you chose Pittsburgh as the draft’s big winner, because very few experts agree with you. This makes the likelihood of you being right even higher! Most draft grades are wrong. Being a fan of the New York Jets, I can say that our draft grades are usually wrong, but Joe Douglas has reversed that trend. It was obvious in 2022 that the Jets had a great draft and look, they had the OROY and DROY. Now everyone is lauding them again, despite their 2023 selections being far less glamorous. I too love their draft this year, but did they win? Did they beat Pittsburgh? I don’t think I care, nor does it matter.
I agree with you that the Pittsburgh Steelers won the 2023 NFL Draft, simply because I can’t come up with a better argument for or against them. My Jets favor talent over need and that’s my philosophy as well. Pittsburgh managed to fill its need with the best talent available to them. That’s better than most accomplished and all you can ask of your team. They win.
Meet our NFL Draft Writers:
Dan Salem is Lead Editor, Writer, and Co-owner of BuzzChomp. He’s a published author, as well as an award winning Actor, Director and Producer. Visit M Square Productions for his film work, or get lost in his old-school comedy on Pillow Talk TV. You can follow him on Twitter and Instagram.
Todd Salem is a Staff Writer and Contributing Editor at BuzzChomp. He’s also a fantasy football and fantasy baseball Staff Writer for RotoBaller. Follow him on Twitter or comment below for his unfiltered opinions.
Pittsburgh Steelers Photo Credits: Komu.com and Steelers on Twitter
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