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.