Draft day is inching closer and former Boise State linebacker Leighton Vander Esch has been a favorite on several key mock draft boards. Today Vander Esch landed on ESPN's Mel Kipers Jr. draft board being picked in the first round by the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Kiper has the Steelers selecting Vander Esch with the 28th overall pick. This past season Vander Esch was named mountain west defensive player of the year. He finished with 141 tackles which are the most at Boise state since 1988.
"Vander Esch is a name I continue to hear for the end of the first round. I expect him to put up strong numbers at the combine. At 6-4, 240, he has the versatility to play outside linebacker, but I think his best fit is as an inside 'backer in a 3-4. He's a physical run-stopper who can defend tight ends and running backs -- he had three interceptions in 2017. Inside linebacker is an obvious need for the Steelers, who will have to replace Ryan Shazier," said ESPN Mel Kiper Jr.
The NFL draft is set to take place on April 26th at the home of the Dallas Cowboys.