The Pittsburgh Steelers traded up in the NFL Draft on Thursday night to secure the No. 10 overall pick. With that pick they selected former Michigan linebacker Devin Bush.
Here’s what Bush’s new head coach and GM had to say about him.
Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin
- “He is an all situations linebacker. All three-down type of guy, versus the run, versus the pass, be it in coverage or in pressures. Those are just the tangible things.
- “We were equally excited about his intangibles. He comes from a football family. He is a football guy. Everyone speaks very highly of him not only as a player, but a person. His leadership skills are unquestioned. The position he plays is like a defensive quarterback and I think that is something that comes very natural to him.”
Steelers GM Kevin Colbert
- “This is a quality young man who’s really an excellent football player. As an inside linebacker, his game is really predicated on what is needed to play the position in modern-day NFL football.”
- “He can not only play the run, but he’s got exceptional cover abilities and he can also rush the passer. Very, very excited that we were able to move up and to be able to get a young player, a young man, like Devin Bush.”
The NFL has evolved in recent years. There’s more speed, more spread, more athleticism on both sides of the football. Bush has a makeup that is similar to what a scout would classify as a prototypical inside linebacker in 2019. Bush is as fast as most wide receivers, can cover well, but also excels and stopping the run and rushing the passer.
Mike Tomlin is a defensive minded head coach and the Steelers have been one of the most ferocious defenses to deal with decade after decade. Bush fits the Steelers mold of player, he fits the “Steel Curtain” DNA.
Bush will liven up a unit that hasn’t been the same since linebacker Ryan Shazier suffered a devastating injury that he’s still recovering from. Bush will replace the speed, thump, and leadership at the linebacker position that has been missing the past two seasons.
The Steelers don’t trade up to draft a player often, and that’s what makes Bush landing in Pittsburgh even more ideal than it already would have been. Pittsburgh was all in on Bush, they believe in him, they really wanted him to be a Steeler, and that’s the type of thing that doesn’t go unnoticed by players and pundits alike.
“It’s just a testament to me as a player. They like me enough as a player and as a person to feel comfortable enough to trade up and snag me,” Bush said.