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2014 NFL mock draft: Phillip Gaines to Pittsburgh Steelers at No. 46

The Pittsburgh Steelers need help in a fairly major way at cornerback, and Neal Coolong is here to address the situation.

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

After adding Pittsburgh defensive tackle Aaron Donald with a first-round pick in the 2014 SB Nation NFL Writers Mock Draft, Neal Coolong of Behind the Steel Curtain has a major hole to fill for the Pittsburgh Steelers with his second-round pick: cornerback.

Team Player Pos. Ht Wt Class
46. Steelers Phillip Gaines, Rice CB 6'0 193 SR

"This is one of the deeper drafts in recent memory as far as the cornerback position goes, and with big names coming from big schools, it’s easy to see why Gaines might be overlooked. At the same time, few, if any, corners in this draft have the level of anticipatory skills as he does. He has great vision and length (6-foot-0, 31 ⅞ inch arms), two things we find highly adaptable in Pittsburgh’s zone scheme. He needs to spend some time getting stronger, but he’s a willing tackler. Any weakness he has is trumped by excellent athleticism and playmaking skills (we watched him allow three catches on 14 targets over a three game period)."

Dan Kadar, SB Nation's NFL Draft analyst, has some thoughts and opinions to share on the Steelers' mock draft pick of Gaines:

The Steelers need to come out of the first two rounds of the draft with a starting cornerback. While this may seem a little early for Gaines, he fits the mold in Pittsburgh. He's an aggressive, physical corner who gets a good jump on the ball. Another corner the Steelers should consider in this range is Lindenwood's Pierre Desir. He does many of the same things as Gaines, just slightly better.

NFL Mock Draft

Tomorrow's picks come from the Dallas Cowboys, Baltimore Ravens and New York Jets. See you then!

Top 5 players remaining

# Player Pos. College Ht. Wt.
12 Louis Nix III DT Notre Dame 6'2 326
35 Demarcus Lawrence DE Boise State 6'3 251
38 Jace Amaro TE Texas Tech 6'5 265
39 Antonio Richardson OT Tennessee 6'6 336
41 Scott Crichton DE Oregon State 6'3 273

2014 SB Nation NFL writers' mock draft results

Steelers picks

Rd # Team Player Pos. College
1 15 Pittsburgh Steelers Aaron Donald DT Pittsburgh
2 46 Pittsburgh Steelers Phillip Gaines CB Rice