The NFL Draft is an art, not a science. It doesn’t matter how healthy your process is, how smart you are, and the culture in your organization, every team will have their own missing draft. Kevin Colbert is one of the best GMs of his era and is littered with picks you stick your nose in: Artie Burns, Limas Sweed and Alonzo Jackson, you get the idea. Whether the Steelers brass liked it or not, Kendrick Green is part of that list. make mistake. Maybe it’s less severe because of the investment, choosing the third round instead of the first or second, but the Steelers are blown away. Now they’re holding on to it, holding their fingers Something from him.
They can’t, and won’t, and it’s time to move on.
Not all of this is Greene’s fault. In a different case, a different scheme, a different set of circumstances, Green might be better. The ugly truth is that prospects don’t work for a variety of reasons and they’re not all players related. Teams can often screw things up because the players simply aren’t talented enough. There is no doubt that Pittsburgh misjudged Greene’s exit. I can’t get past Mike Tomlin’s comments about why they did the “Green” draft in the third round of last year’s draft. My teeth gritted reading it, a reminder of what Tomlin had said.
“We knew we were looking for a game-ready position, and so we were looking for a top player, who played four years of college football like he did in Illinois, unlike maybe someone who was lower tier with the upside who might be less than the end product.”
Kendrick Green was:
– no center
– Not a game ready
– Not old
– A lower class man with an upside that was less than the final product
The complete opposite of what Tomlin said. They wanted a plug-and-play hub. They drafted a project. Key guard they immediately moved to the center. That in itself isn’t a bad idea, there was an advantage to playing Green in the middle, but he was a piece of mud that needed a lot of work, not replacing Maurkice Pouncey out of the gate. It’s hard to misjudge a player more than the Steelers did with Green and no doubt that has hurt him in his NFL career. Having two offensive line coaches in two years of the NFL, and actually three in three years and considering that these guys have to ditch and tweak what the college coach wants and teaches, further complicates the problem.
But Green has his own set of issues. Being petite, short and without height requires him to play with perfect style. Relocating him to his “normal” left guard position made sense but wasn’t a panacea, something Dave Bryan and I have been anticipating since those discussions emerged. The same issues he had at the center that he has on guard, and at this point, his primary issues will likely remain. When he plays with impeccable style, there be Quality Representatives. But she flips a coin if she gets Kendrick Green good or bad on a particular rep and when it looks ugly, it looks like ugly.
And Kevin Dotson is the nonsensical choice to be the team’s primary left-back this season. Tomlin hasn’t announced it yet but it’s coming. Green is on this list as a backup and even in this lower capacity, it brings minimal value to the team. Pittsburgh Reserve Airlines guys are meant to be versatile, wear multiple hats and be able to play more than one position. At best, Greene is only a backup left guard. He’s third behind JC Hassenauer and hasn’t scored any time in the right guard – I can only imagine what ugly things would look like there. Pittsburgh has nine Marines on its 53-man roster and Green is number 9, which means he won’t be active in a gameday. Newly acquired Trent Scott and Jesse Davis can play multiple positions and have more value when injuries hit in-game.
Indeed, Davis’ acquisition is a tacit acknowledgment of Greene’s limitations. They’ve been traded with Davis knowing the team needs a backup guard in both locations and Green couldn’t be that guy. In theory, you could move Kevin Dotson to RG if say, James Daniels is down in the game but no team wants to switch two positions to replace one player.
Pittsburgh faces the sunk cost fallacy. idea We have invested a lot already, let’s wait. Throw away the good money after the bad and watch it explode. The strange thing is that Omar Khan and Andy Weddell didn’t go green and wouldn’t have the egg on their faces if they had – that was Kevin Colbert’s choice. Some would argue that cutting Green for a year in his career is premature, to give him more time, wait and see if things get better. But Green has played plenty of shots in his NFL career. All the last camp, all the pre-season, almost 1,000 shots in the last regular season, the whole 2022 camp, and that’s all pre-season. There is enough to rate it. Perhaps this team knew by the second week of camp if Greene was going to drown or swim. Now, they know the writing on the wall.
Perhaps Green could succeed elsewhere. It happened to Kraig Urbik a decade ago, with a third-round pick before his second season. He found a new life in Buffalo and went on to enjoy a solid career. But the odds of Greene succeeding in Pittsburgh are remote. It is part of the NFL Draft Tournament. It sucks, it hurts, you move on.
It’s not worth spending time thinking about maybe As Creed Humphrey, Center Draft Award. That’s wasted energy and thanks to the Steelers’ credit, they hit it off with their top picks at Neji Harris and Pat Freymouth. I don’t look at choosing Green with a crystal ball lens all I see is reality. Green is not Plan A or Plan B. His choice was a mistake. The only thing worse than making a mistake is sticking with one, and trying to convince yourself that you didn’t.