2017 NFL Draft: Steelers And Glen Antoine Are A Good Fit

Glen Antoine uses nifty feet and a non-stop motor to wreak havoc on opponents. Photo from Twitter, Glen Antoine (@BigG_Antoine).

It was a draft that lined up perfectly with the needs of the Pittsburgh Steelers, who ultimately came away with three starters, CB Artie Burns, Safety Sean Davis, and DT Javon Hargrave. In less than three weeks, there is a very good chance that lightning could strike twice for the Steelers once again, because for the second year in a row, the positional strength of the draft lines up perfectly with what the Steelers need. Once the Steelers snatch up their edge rusher/OLB, CB, and very likely a running back in the third round, where do the Steelers go from there? How about to an agile defensive lineman with a non-stop motor? How about University of Idaho nose tackle Glen Antoine?

At 6’2″/325 lbs, Glen Antoine helped lead the Idaho Vandals to one of their best records in recent memory, 9-4, with 33 tackles, 1 sack, 2 hurries, and 3 tackles for losses. Following his senior season, Antoine was thought of enough, on a national level, that he received an invite to the College Gridiron Showcase, an event that gave him the opportunity to put his skills on display for NFL scouts league wide. A run stuffing, gap plugging, 3-4 nose tackle, Glen Antoine, cut from the Casey Hampton mold, is a perfect fit for the Pittsburgh Steelers. While people may not brag about his speed, what makes Glen Antoine unique is his combination of nimble feet, freakish strength, and a motor that is said to be always running.

Glen Antoine displays an excellent ability to plug up his gaps, stuff the run, and to fight off the double teams, allowing his linebackers to make plays. With all the trademark abilities of nose tackles like Joel Steed and Casey Hampton, and with feet as nimble as some running backs, one of the biggest criticisms of Antoine is his forty times. How often are defensive linemen asked to run forty yards or more down field? The last time I saw a defensive lineman running that far down field, James Harrison was returning an interception 100 yards for a touchdown. Antoine’s speed should not be of any real concern. In his highlights video, his speed looked to be more than adequate for anything the Steelers would need him to do.

Another criticism of Glen Antoine is his lack of a legitimate pass rushing move. Maybe this would be more of a concern if he was a day one, or a day two prospect, but he isn’t. Despite the first round ability he has displayed in other aspects of of is game, he is looked at as being a project. With Antoine’s love and aptitude for the game, it shouldn’t be hard for him to pick up a pass rushing move and develop it. You can never have enough good defensive linemen, and eventually, Glen Antoine is going to prove to be an incredible bargain. If the Steelers are fortunate and wise, he will end up being their bargain.


2 thoughts on “2017 NFL Draft: Steelers And Glen Antoine Are A Good Fit

  1. Do you see Antoine as a 3rd or 4th round guy?

    I haven’t seen him play, but the highlights show some potential. I think Tomlin and Butler have devalued the NT position (as has the NFL), and I think that is a mistake.

    Versatility is understandable, but there are still core aspects of the game that are game changers. If this guy has Hampton like ability to completely shutdown the middle of the line and collapse the pocket from the middle, it fundamentally changes what an opposing team can do.
    For example, Dick Butkus didn’t have the skill set of most modern LB’s, but he ruled the line and short middle of the field. I once saw a documentary on him, where coaches who had to coach against him said that every time they played the Bears, they had to completely eviscerate the playbook. When asked why, they said, every play we had that went to the middle of the field had to be scrapped for that game, because of Dick Butkus.

    Now even in today’s game, if you can completely dominate any aspect of the game defensively, it skews the match up aspect of the opponents game plan. It doesn’t make them one dimensional with talent, but it does make them one dimensional schematically. And that is more important to a defense than an offense and would bring back an advantage we haven’t had since Hampton.

    I don’t know if Antoine could be Hampton-esque, but if he could! Our second 3rd round pick or 4th round pick, yeah, I’d go for that!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I see Antoine as a late 4th or early 5th round pick, but I’m guessing he will go earlier if some team decides he has the versatility to play outside as well, which his tape suggests. With the Steelers signing Tyson Alualu, I don’t see them selecting a 3-4 nose tackle, but if he is there in the 5th, I wouldn’t be disappointed if the Steelers took him. I see him as a steal much like I saw Hargrave being. With his 10-15 yard quickness being what it is, how about a 327 lb inside linebacker? Lol


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