Pittsburgh Steelers 7-Round 2022 NFL Mock Draft spots Desmond Ridder as the future face of the Steelers

Essentials in a Pittsburgh Steelers 2022 NFL Mock Draft include drafting a quarterback that returns the franchise to the top of the division.

If you’re a Pittsburgh Steelers fan, you’ve probably analyzed a number of 2022 NFL Mock Draft articles this year. Head coach Mike Tomlin must find a new quarterback for the first time in his tenure with the Steelers, and fans are eager to know who that will be. In PFN Draft Analyst Ian Cummings’ latest 7-Round 2022 NFL Mock Draft, he puts those concerns to rest.

Pittsburgh Steelers 2022 7-Round Mock Draft

Under Tomlin, the Steelers haven’t experienced a losing season. However, that’s not the standard that fans expect. With Ben Roethlisberger retiring, the team has to enter a new era offensively. There are several key free agents that need to be re-signed, but this mock draft could solve a few of those dilemmas too.

Round 1, Pick 20: Desmond Ridder, QB, Cincinnati

Not everyone is sold on Desmond Ridder as a first-round pick. There were plenty of highs and plenty of lows during his career at Cincinnati. Even in the Senior Bowl, we saw both sides of him. However, he managed to steady the ship in Mobile, and he looked good at the NFL Combine. He brings plenty of athleticism to the quarterback position, something not seen in Pittsburgh for a long time.

Ridder ran a 4.52 40-yard dash, and it’s something that makes him tough to stop. The question will be his passing. He displayed great arm strength at Cincinnati but also struggled with accuracy. He should have a great group of receivers in Chase Claypool and Diontae Johnson (and Juju Smith-Schuster should he re-sign), so he just needs to find some chemistry with those guys.

Round 2, Pick 52: Travis Jones, DT, UConn

There are quite a few players in this draft that fit the Steelers mentality, and Travis Jones is one of them. This is where the Steelers have to decide if they like the upside of Jones more than taking an offensive lineman. Drafting him doesn’t seem like a bad choice.

The former UConn stalwart was a standout at the Senior Bowl, and his draft stock took off since that point. He’s a strong, powerful player who commands double- and sometimes triple-teams in order to keep him at bay. With the Steelers already in good hands, adding Jones in this 2022 NFL Mock Draft only makes that unit even better.

Round 3, Pick 84: Nicholas Petit-Frere, OT, Ohio State

Before the 2021 season, some believed that Nicholas Petit-Frere could be a first-round talent. Now, he’s not going to be a Day 1 selection, but someone’s getting a really good player in the third round. While the Steelers didn’t take an offensive lineman in their first two picks, they’re still getting a potential starter in the former Buckeyes tackle.

Round 4, Pick 138: Josh Johnson, WR, Tulsa

Even though multiple wide receivers hit free agency this year, Pittsburgh might avoid some of that stress by drafting one. While Josh Johnson won’t make an impact right away, he’s still someone that can be a solid contributor. Underrated for most of this time at Tulsa, he could finally shine with the Steelers.

Round 6, Pick 208: Ali Fayad, EDGE, Western Michigan

Western Michigan edge rusher Ali Fayad possesses an elite spin move. Fayad had some impressive reps at the 2022 East-West Shrine Bowl and turned heads at those in attendance. While he may be a bit undersized to play a traditional three-down pass-rushing role right away, he has the frame and speed to get upfield quickly against more cumbersome tackles.

Round 7, Pick 225: Josh Thompson, CB, Texas

The Texas secondary had so much potential the last few years but couldn’t quite live up to expectations. Still, a few of them are going to play in the NFL. Josh Thompson won’t be the biggest name in the draft by any means, but he’ll get a chance to learn from one of the best defensive minds in the league.

Round 7, Pick 241: Chasen Hines, G, LSU

It seems like interior linemen can stand out even more by providing teams with versatility. Chasen Hines gives the Steelers value in this 2022 NFL Mock Draft because he can play both guard and center. If he gets a hold of his man early, it’s essentially game over. With the power in his hands and an extremely strong base, he has the potential to compete for time right away while continuing to work on his development for long-term success.

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