The Colts had yet another mediocre season, floating around mid-table nearly all season in the AFC South, who should they draft to get out of this rut?
The Colts have had a busy free agency, bringing in plenty of talent, but by far not enough to solve their issues. If they are to get the best out of their franchise quarterback during his prime years, then they must act soon. Here are RealSport’s predictions for possible draft picks in this year's draft:
First Round Target – Cam Robinson, Offensive Tackle, Alabama
With the 15th overall pick it is possible they will look to add strength to the offensive line, to give Luck some more protection going into 2017. Cam Robinson is widely regarded as the top OT in this year's draft, standing at 6ft 6” and 322 pounds. His size is a big plus, combining this with his strength and this imposing figure could be exactly what the Colts need to shield Luck more effectively.
First Round Target – Dalvin Cook, Running Back, Florida State
Whilst starter Frank Gore is still a strong RB, by the time next season comes around he will have turned 34. The Colts need to be thinking about a replacement for the veteran, and Cook may be the answer. Whilst not the top RB in this years draft, they would likely have to trade up to get their hands on the likes of Fournette or McCaffrey. The 5ft 10” Florida State alumni ran a 4.49 in the 40, and showed his strength in the bench press at this year's combine. However, off the field issues hamper his chances at a higher draft valuation, and this may deter the Colts if they feel it is a significant issue.
Mid Round Target – Alex Anzalone, Linebacker, Florida
The Colts continue to struggle at linebacker, despite the acquisitions of John Simon from the Texans, and Sean Spence from the Titans in free agency. Their weak defense let them down massively last season and was one of the main reasons for them not contending for the division title. In particular, they struggled in run defense ranking bottom of the NFL last season as mentioned in our offseason needs. A good mid-round value player to fill this void would be Anzalone, who showed his speed and agility well in the combine. The drawback to drafting him would be his injury risk. He has spent a significant amount of his college career injured and this will worry NFL teams about whether or not he is worth the risk.
Mid Round Target – Justin Evans, Safety, Texas A&M
Losing Mike Adams leaves Indianapolis with a gap to fill at Strong Safety, one which Evans could take up. The A&M safety was not a full participant in this years combine, failing to record a 40-yard dash. However, many believe he has the potential to perform well in the NFL due to his pace and agility, whilst needing to bulk up. There seem to be question marks surrounding just how good he really is, but he could well be worth a gamble.
Late Flyer – Kareem Are, Guard, Florida State
With just one recognised LG currently on the Colts’ depth chart, a backup here is definitely required. Kareem Are represents a risk. At 6ft 6”, 325 pounds he has the size needed for the position, but missed much of his college career through injury. And yet, he still managed to receive All-ACC second team honours despite this showing that there is talent there. The issue remains that his injury history and question marks about his body control could result in him not living up to expectations. However, he may be worth the risk late on.
Late Flyer – Ryan Glasgow, Defensive Tackle, Michigan
The Colts lack depth at DT and therefore could be looking at this position later on in the draft – as it is not a pressing issue. A possibility for this position would be Ryan Glasgow of Michigan. His size and strength work to his advantage, and with quite a deep field of DTs in this years draft, it is probable that he will fall to the later rounds given his lack of playing time and uncertainty surrounding his pass rushing ability.