With the Combine kicking off today, it is now officially time to start obsessing about a date in late April that almost rivals the day the Super Bowl is played on.
That's right. It's time to get all bug-eyed and jittery over the NFL Draft.
This marks the third years Stampede Blue has covered the draft for the Colts. In 2006, I said Addai would be the Colts' first pick. Last year, I said Justin Harrell, but would not be surprised if Gonzalez got picked. This year, with the absence of a first round pick, it is a total crap shoot. So, as I wind down the Off-Season 2008 Needs series, I will now segue into my yearly Who the Hell will they pick? series.
Surprisingly, this year I think there is a very good chance that several "Indiana Grown" products will make their way to the Blue Shoe. The Colts have a long history of taking players from the SEC (Peyton Manning, Joseph Addai, David Thornton, etc.) or, more specifically, Syracuse University (Marvin, Dwight, Josh Thomas). This year the Big Ten could yield a serious crop of new talent, with much of that talent coming from Indiana colleges. Part of this series will focus on three Indiana grown players: IU's James Hardy, Purdue's Cliff Avril, and Notre Dame's Trevor Laws. All three have an excellent chance of getting drafted by the Colts in 2008, and all three fill very clear needs for this team.
I personally feel that Avril and Laws are more likely to get picked than Hardy, who will likely go in the first round. Avril and Laws are perfect Cover 2 specimens with non-stop motors, high character, and speed, speed, speed! As the Combine moves forward, we will keep an eye on how these three perform.
Also, speaking of Mock Drafts, check out Bullard47's in the diaries. One thing Bullard47 brings up is the prospect of multiple compensation picks for the Colts due to all the free agent loses last year. This is a part of the Draft I always forget. It's likely the Colts will get several second day picks, and Bill Polian always works his magic in the second day.
Small side note: This is the last year the NFL Scouting Combine will reside at the RCA Dome. Next year, it will move to the new Lucas Oil Stadium.