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NFL Mock Draft 2013: Steelers select Michigan OL Taylor Lewan

In SB Nation's latest mock draft, the Pittsburgh Steelers select Michigan offensive lineman Taylor Lewan.

Gregory Shamus

For the first time since the 2009 season, the Pittsburgh Steelers missed the playoffs in 2012 -- much to the chagrin of Steelers fans. Though Steelers brass and fans alike may not care about silver linings, Pittsburgh will pick in the middle of each round in the 2013 NFL Draft, allowing Mike Tomlin to replenish his team with young talent.

In SB Nation's latest mock draft, the Steelers select Michigan Wolverines offensive lineman Taylor Lewan with the No. 17 overall pick. Though he's not the top offensive tackle prospect in the draft, Lewan would provide a boost to Pittsburgh's offensive line -- and Matthew Fairburn believes Lewan will be able to stick on the left tackle in the NFL.

The Steelers' offensive line once again struggled this season, due more to injuries than anything else. Mike Adams performed well at times, but will probably be a right tackle throughout his career. Michigan's Taylor Lewan showed a lot of good things when matched up against Jadeveon Clowney in the Capital One Bowl. He would be a huge upgrade on the left side.

Protecting quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is priority No. 1 in Pittsburgh, and upgrading the offensive line is the only way to properly protect Big Ben. Roethlisberger missed three games for the Steelers in 2012, as Pittsburgh finished with an 8-8 record -- two games behind Baltimore and Cincinnati in the AFC North.

The 2013 NFL Draft will be held April 25 to 27.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.