Updated: May 2, 2022
(Photo by Joe Murphy/Getty Images)
It seems like every year the Ravens select players that would've been perfect Steelers. Look no further to safety Kyle Hamilton and center Tyler Linderbaum, who the Ravens selected in the first round this past Thursday night. The Ravens then selected nose tackle Travis Jones six spots before the Steelers made their third-round selection.
It's unclear if the Steelers had an interest in selecting Hamilton over Kenny Pickett or Jones of DeMarvin Leal, but we do know that the Ravens wanted Memphis wide receiver Calvin Austin III, who went to the Steelers at pick No. 138, right before the Ravens.
According to Peter King of NBC Sports, the Ravens were going to draft Austin with pick No. 139. King was in the Ravens’ draft room and revealed that a member of the Ravens organization blurted out: “Gotta be kidding me” when it was announced that the Steelers snatched Austin. Austin runs a 4.32 and would've been a perfect replacement for Marquise "Hollywood" Brown, who the Ravens traded to the Cardinals for the No. 23 overall pick during the draft, a pick which ended up being Linderbaum.
With Austin gone, the Ravens selected tight end Isaiah Likely out of Coastal Carolina. So, the Ravens failed to select a single receiver in the draft. Who is Lamar Jackson going to throw to this season?
Austin had back-to-back 1,000-yard receiving seasons at Memphis and averaged 16.3 yards per catch in 49 career games. NBC Sports NFL analyst Chris Simms has called Austin “lightning quick, (with) probably the best acceleration in the whole draft.” Simms also said "Sauce" Gardner told him the hardest player to guard for him was Austin. Gardner was selected by the Jets at fourth overall.
Watch Austin go up against Gardner 1-on-1 in the clip below. Gardner also says Austin was the toughest receiver he's faced when he was interviewed at the combine.