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Steelers GM offers honest take on players in draft who opted out last year

Several players in this year’s NFL Draft will be more than a year removed from playing competitive football, and that could negatively impact their stock. Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert basically admitted as much on Monday. Colbert was asked about potentially drafting players who opted out last season amid the coronavirus pandemic, and he… Read More

The post Steelers GM offers honest take on players in draft who opted out last year appeared first on Larry Brown Sports.

Kevin Colbert

Several players in this year’s NFL Draft will be more than a year removed from playing competitive football, and that could negatively impact their stock. Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert basically admitted as much on Monday.

Colbert was asked about potentially drafting players who opted out last season amid the coronavirus pandemic, and he said that would not be enough of a reason for the Steelers to avoid a prospect altogether. However, he said the team would give preference to a player who took part in the 2020 season over one who didn’t if faced with that type of decision.

“As I stated in the summer, if a player chooses to opt out for whatever reason, that’s their decision and we will respect it,” Colbert said, via NFL.com’s Nick Shook. “However, if a player played in 2020 and those players are of equal value, the one that didn’t play and the one that played, we’ll take the one that played because we don’t know what the opt-outs will be like in their first season back in football. … We believe it’s hard to sit this game out.”

There are undoubtedly many executives and scouts who share Colbert’s opinion. Taking a year off of competitive football is not easy, especially for a young player who is still developing.

While NFL teams may not view it as a character concern like they might for opting out of a bowl game, the reality is there are more question marks surrounding those players than some of their peers — pandemic or no pandemic.

The post Steelers GM offers honest take on players in draft who opted out last year appeared first on Larry Brown Sports.

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