The Indianapolis Colts have been in the least desirable spot the last few years. They have been good enough to win games and nearly make the playoffs, mostly due to the play of Andrew Luck and TY Hilton, two of the best players at their positions in the NFL. Unfortunately though, the rest of the team has been really poorly put together. Former GM Ryan Grigson did a terrible job of assembling a capable offensive line and defense that could help propel Andrew Luck and the rest of the team deep into the playoffs.
The sad reality of the Colts’ situation this year is that they only have a few truly irreplaceable players (Andrew Luck, TY Hilton, Ryan Kelly, Jack Doyle, Vontae Davis) and only a small handful of players who have shown the potential to be capable starters one day (Joe Haeg, Le’Raven Clark, Henry Anderson, Clayton Geathers). So essentially, the Colts have many holes on their team and don’t have many picks in this upcoming draft to try and fix them.
Now that was the negative aspect of the team. To be a bit more optimistic, the Colts do have the most coveted position in all of football locked down with one of the best players in the league. Also, newly hired GM Chris Ballard comes from a very good organization in the Chiefs and definitely knows how to build a successful team. With so many holes and the Quarterback position already locked up for many years to come, here’s my mock draft for the Colts this year:
Round 1 (Pick 15): Charles Harris EDGE Missouri
The Colts are in desperate need for speed rushers on the defensive side of the ball. With Robert Mathis retiring this offseason, the Colts are left with no edge guys to get after the passer. Charles Harris possesses the speed, bend, and technique to be a dominant pass rusher in the NFL. Harris would be an immediate impact and give them a type of pass rusher that the Colts haven’t had in years. Harris also is avery underrated run defender who would be an improvement in that department for the Colts as well.
Round 2 (Pick 46): Caleb Brantley DL Florida
Another way the Colts could improve their pass rush is by adding defensive lineman Caleb Brantley. Brantley may slip this far into the second as a result of an inconsistent motor and lack of elite athleticism but he has the tools to be a very solid interior rusher in the NFL. He possesses very good technique and his hand usage is among the best in the class. He would likely play across the defensive line in a base defense and shift to the NT position on passing downs where his pass rush ability wold be too much for opposing centers.
Round 3 (Pick 80): Ahkello Witherspoon CB Colorado
The Colts have really struggled to find a good cornerback to play on the opposite side of Pro Bowler Vontae Davis. From Greg Toler to Antonio Cromartie, the list of failures at that position is really long. Ahkello Witherspoon would be a vast improvement from what they’ve had and may even pass Davis as the team’s number one corner before too long. Witherspoon is lengthy, athletic, and has the footwork to match up with any type of receiver. His mirror and match ability is top notch and his understanding of route concepts make him one of the top cornerback prospects in this draft. Drafting Ahkello Witherspoon would turn a major weakness in the Colts’ defense into a potential strength.
Round 4 (Pick 121): Eddie Jackson FS Alabama
The Colts may have possibly found their strong safety of the future with Clayton Geathers last season. He showed great aggressive play and if he can clean up a few minor flaws, he has the potential to be a very good safety in this league. What the Colts desperately need though is a ball hawking center fielder like Eddie Jackson to complete their safety duo. Jackson prior to his injury this past season was one of the best safeties in all of college football and has the ball skills and athleticism to be a force in the backend of the Colts’ defense.
Round 4 (Pick 137): Alex Anzalone LB Florida
One of the most underrated players in this draft class is Alex Anzalone. The former Gator is a “New Age Linebacker” who has the athleticism and tackling ability to be a very good player at the next level. He would bring some much needed youth and speed to the depleted Colts’ linebacking core and also possesses the leadership skills you look for in a young player. If Anzalone can stay healthy, he’d be a very solid addition for the Colts.
Round 4 (Pick 144): TJ Logan RB North Carolina
Outside of TY Hilton, the Colts lack explosive playmakers on the offensive side of the ball. Frank Gore is old and not the same player he used to be, Jack Doyle is reliable but hardly explosive in any way, and Donte Moncrief (when healthy) is more of a red zone threat than anything else. TJ Logan would add a whole new dynamic of speed and explosion that the Colts’ offense hasn’t had in a while. With Logan and Turbin subbing in more frequently for Gore, the Colts offense would be much more dangerous and versatile out of the backfield.
Round 5 (Pick 158): Devonte Fields EDGE Louisville
If there is one thing that the Chiefs loved to do in Chris Ballard’s time there, its draft troubled yet talented players. Just last year alone, the Chiefs drafted Chris Jones (arrested before the draft) and Tyreek Hill (Domestic Violence charge) and both players turned out to be stars. Devonte Fields fits that same type of mold. Fields is a very talented EDGE rusher who shined at TCU his freshman year and (after getting suspended and removed from TCU) had a very solid career at Louisville. If he can clean up his inconsistent play and motor, Fields would be a steal in the 5th round for the Colts.