Kevin Colbert: 'I've been around two Hall of Fame runners and they were both first-round picks'
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Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert has spoken with several outlets this week to talk about the Steelers' 2021 draft haul, and his interview with Pat Kirwan and Jim Miller on SiriusXM NFL Radio today was the latest one.
The topic of is it worthy of drafting a running back in the first round has been a hot topic among the national and Pittsburgh media, along with the fanbase. Many in the analytics community like Warren Sharp of Sharp Football and Pro Football Focus are hell-bent on the idea of drafting a running back in the first round.
Colbert doesn't believe in that notion, however.
"Honestly, Pat, just like you said a great player is a great player regardless of the position," Colbert said. "You know, we can look at all that data and so on and so forth. I've said it before, I've been around two Hall of Fame runners and they were both first-round picks in Jerome Bettis and Barry Sanders. And I know they helped us win a lot of games, in Jerome's case he helped us win a Super Bowl. So, we don't buy into that at all. I guess there's arguments for it, but again, we're going to look at the player regardless of the position. If that player can help us win games and he's available to us, it's our job to take him."
Colbert was with Barry Sanders in Detroit when he was the pro scouting director for the Lions from 1990-1999. Colbert then joined Jerome Bettis in Pittsburgh when he was hired by the Steelers in 2000 as the director of football operations. In 2010, Colbert became the Steelers' first ever general manager. Harris is the second running back that Colbert has drafted in the first round during his tenure -- the first being Rashard Mendenhall in 2008.