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the more you can do

Mike Prista

After further review, there may be more than meets the eye related to the Steelers draft class.

Positions addressed through seven selections including offensive and defensive lines, tight ends, cornerbacks and outside linebackers/edge rushers.

However, upon further consideration, the inside linebacker may have also been strengthened.

Assistant General Manager Andy Weidle identified fourth-round pick Nick Herbig as a potential player to contribute as an outside linebacker/edge rusher and off-the-ball.

“I think he can do both,” Weidl admitted last week.

Harbig is primarily an edge rusher at the University of Wisconsin, and Steelers outside linebacker coach Denzel Martin says Harbig initially started working as an outside linebacker shortly after he was drafted 132nd overall. Announced.

However, pre-draft evaluations predicted that Herbig might be a better fit inside the NFL.

Draft analyst Dane Brugler of The Athletic rated the 6-foot-2-inch, 240-pound Herbig as the 79th overall prospect and fifth best inside linebacker.

“He has that ability,” Weidl continued. “He has a high football IQ. Playing at the line of scrimmage, his ability to get off and rush passers-by, and his ability to fall into cover with a ‘stuck’ backer, consciousness He is an energetic, relentless footballer and very physically strong.” .

“The only thing that makes Nick pop is he always passes people to the ball. He’s looking for a job. He makes plays. He can win off the edge and he can win rush games.” It’s a run game, so it’s exciting.

“We thought of him as a Steeler type player and a Steeler type person.”

Harbig shares traits with former Wisconsin teammate Keene Benton. Keane Benton is his second-round defensive lineman (he was 49th overall) and a player the Steelers recognize as more than just a conventional nose tackle for him.

“He’s a powerful man,” Weidl said of the 6-foot-4, 309-pound Benton. He has a wrestling background, and he’s a guy who feels comfortable being uncomfortable because of the conditioning that’s been instilled in him.

“Then I saw him in the Senior Bowl. I saw his ability to pass rush. He can go from B-gap to A-gap, win an edge, go across the face. I think he has an advantage. Rusher. ”

One of the reasons Harbig and Benton are with the Steelers is because of the connections Weidle shares with former Wisconsin assistant coach Chris Herring.

Haring was head coach at Mount Lebanon High School for 17 years before eventually moving to Wisconsin.

“I got to see them play at Ohio State,” Widedle recalled of a scouting trip last September. We were there for the pre-warm ups and Chris Herring, who coached my brother at Mount Lebanon, coached all 3. He’s known him for a long time and was really good with him. A good relationship caught up with Chris before the game and was able to gain some insight into Keanu and told him about Nick Harbig through the process Nick declared.”

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