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Large crop of defenders, including Rashaan Evans, meet with Steelers at 2018 Scouting Combine

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 03/04/2018 - 8:29am

Take a look at who the Steelers most recently interviewed at the 2018 NFL Scouting Combine.

The Pittsburgh Steelers continue to meet with any number of college prospects at the 2018 NFL Scouting Combine, and as more players arrive in Indianapolis, the list of those who meet with the Steelers’ brass continues to grow.

While not all prospects disclose which teams they’ve met with, and it’s nearly impossible to track down every single meeting the Steelers have held while in Indianapolis, we here at BTSC do the best we can to stay on top of the news and keep fans informed.

The last group of athletes was mainly tight ends, but the latest crop of prospects was what most fans are looking to see — defenders.

Check out who the Steelers reportedly met with on Saturday:

(Information courtesy of Joe Rutter of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and Jon Ledyard of Scout.com.

Boise State LB — Leighton Vander Esch

No surprise: Leighton Vander Esch has met with the Steelers at the combine. Raves about the meeting and the treatment he got from coaches.

— Joe Rutter (@tribjoerutter) March 3, 2018

Alabama LB — Shaun Dion Hamilton

Shaun Dion Hamilton has a formal meeting with the Steelers tonight

— Jon Ledyard (@LedyardNFLDraft) March 3, 2018

Texas LB — Malik Jefferson

Malik Jefferson has an informal meeting with the Steelers tonight

— Jon Ledyard (@LedyardNFLDraft) March 3, 2018

Stanford LB — Harrison Phillips

Stanford’s Harrison Phillips said he has a formal interview with the Steelers set up for Saturday night.

— Joe Rutter (@tribjoerutter) March 3, 2018

Alabama LB — Rashaan Evans

Rashaan Evans will meet with the #Steelers tonight for a formal interview

— Jon Ledyard (@LedyardNFLDraft) March 3, 2018

Alabama DL — Da’Ron Payne

Alabama defensive lineman Da’Ron Payne, who played for d-line coach Karl Dunbar, said he had a formal meeting with the Steelers #NFLCombine

— Joe Rutter (@tribjoerutter) March 3, 2018

Stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news from the combine, and be sure to check out our pre-draft visit tracker which will launch on Sunday morning for your one-stop shop to see who’s been listed as meeting with the Steelers throughout the lead-up to the 2018 NFL Draft.

Clayton says 'franchise tag' for Bell

Steelers.com Videos - Sun, 03/04/2018 - 8:00am
NFL Analyst John Clayton touches on Bell, the AFC North, and the first overall pick.

NFLN: Who won Day 3 at the Combine?

Steelers.com Videos - Sun, 03/04/2018 - 7:41am
The "NFL Now LIVE" crew reveals which players won the day as Day 3 of the 2018 NFL Scouting Combine comes to a close.

More NFL prospects should follow Lamar Jackson’s non-agent approach under the current CBA

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 03/04/2018 - 6:48am

Lamar Jackson is making headlines and waves, but his agent-less approach shouldn’t be one of them.

Say what you will about Heisman Trophy-winner Lamar Jackson, but the kid has a point when it comes to his approach to the NFL.

No, this isn’t about him not testing as a wide receiver at the NFL Scouting Combine.

Not about his accuracy throwing deep-out passes.

Not even about his tendency to want to tuck the football and run when things break down.

This is all about how he’s approaching the financial aspect of the upcoming NFL Draft, and his representation.

News broke recently that Jackson was reportedly going to have his mother represent him as his agent while the quarterback prepared to throw at the combine. This produced a very interesting reaction from major media outlets.

Just look at this for example:

.@WhitlockJason: Lamar Jackson being represented by his mom heading into the NFL Combine is a red flag pic.twitter.com/SVEdhNBPqw

— FOX Sports (@FOXSports) February 28, 2018

Come to find out, Jackson’s mother isn’t planning to be his agent, but merely his ‘manager’. So, if his mother isn’t going to be his agent, who will be the one talking to NFL teams, scouts and general managers?

Jackson himself — and, at least to me, this makes perfect sense.

Some teams have wanted Jackson to try to become a wide receiver, taking the Kordell Stewart path to the NFL, but Jackson is insistent on being an NFL quarterback. With that said, the team who selects him will be getting someone who is adamant he won’t be lining up on the outside to catch passes.

When this thought crossed my mind, I saw this flash on my Twitter feed and realized this kid has a pretty good plan.

Lamar Jackson told me that his mom is not his agent, “she is my manager” and he added “I represent myself.” Jackson told me he does not think an agent is necessary with the current rookie scale for initial #NFL contracts. pic.twitter.com/CfhvyCWGQ1

— Josina Anderson (@JosinaAnderson) March 2, 2018

While Jason Whitlock spoke in the above video about how an agent can vouch for his player to be drafted, whenever Jackson’s name is called during the draft, and it will be at some point — his pay will almost already be dictated.

Under thew new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) between the NFL and the NFLPA, there are no more Sam Bradford breaking-the-bank deals to rookies. Instead, if you are a first-round draft pick, you can receive X-number of dollars. Second-round pick, X-number of dollars...and so on, and so forth. Signing bonuses can be negotiated, but they’re pretty much slotted, based on the previously mentioned criteria.

The NFL and NFLPA have made rookie contracts elementary. So basic they hardly make headlines anymore.

So why would Jackson representing himself during this part of the process be a bad thing? He wouldn’t have to give a percentage of his money to an agent, and he didn’t say he would never get an agent — just not now.

When I analyze this, I think it’s genius — provided you’re confident in your abilities, get drafted based on your success at a high level, and trust in the tape you’ve put out there during your college years. When you get drafted and then reach the point where you need a second contract, then you pick some representation...especially if you’ve been successful in the NFL.

I’m surprised more players haven’t tried this approach, but it seems Jackson might be blazing a new trail for a lot of young prospects. With the media putting some pressure on Jackson, he might find himself conforming to the norm and getting some representation, but if he doesn’t, it’ll be interesting to see if it has any impact on his draft stock.

Only time will tell...

Pittsburgh Steelers 2018 Pre-Draft visit Tracker

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 03/04/2018 - 5:31am

Keep tabs on who the Steelers have met with at each stage of the offseason leading up to the NFL Draft.

The Pittsburgh Steelers, along with every other NFL team, are preparing for the upcoming 2018 NFL Draft, and all are doing their diligence interviewing prospects. There are several stages where teams interview prospects, and it can actually start at All-Star games. Teams will take a look at prospects at the Senior Bowl and the Shriner game, but the biggest event is the 2018 NFL Scouting Combine.

With the Scouting combine underway, reports of teams meeting with prospects are raging. We here at BTSC will keep you updated with the prospects who have met with Pittsburgh at every step along the way. The Combine, Pro Days and of course the ever-important Official Pre-Draft Visits.

Check out the latest list below:

UPDATED: 3/3

Combine

Oklahoma State QB Mason Rudolph
Louisville QB Lamar Jackson
South Dakota State TE Dallas Goedert
Wisconsin TE Troy Fumagalli
University of Washington TE Will Dissly
Penn State TE Mike Gesicki
Indiana TE Ian Thomas
Oklahoma State WR James Washington

+ Teams at the Combine will meet with a number of athletes, and not all are reported. We do the best we can to post all which are made public.

Pro Day Official Pre-Draft Visit

Combine takes center stage

Steelers.com News - Sun, 03/04/2018 - 5:00am
If you missed anything this week, we have you covered with our weekly recap.

Combine takes center stage

Steelers.com News - Sun, 03/04/2018 - 5:00am
If you missed anything this week, we have you covered with our weekly recap.

Hargrave Combine workout

Steelers.com Videos - Sun, 03/04/2018 - 5:00am
Watch highlights from Javon Hargrave's NFL Scouting Combine workout.

Passing on passing

Steelers.com News - Sat, 03/03/2018 - 4:10pm
Throwing show doesn't include USC's Darnold.

Passing on passing

Steelers.com News - Sat, 03/03/2018 - 4:10pm
Throwing show doesn't include USC's Darnold.

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