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Grading the Draft: 2008

There have been some great analysis stories done already by BBS and by Bullard47 on the draft, so I'll try to touch on some things these guys didn't talk about.  By the way, you'll notice my new avatar next to my name.  It was submitted by the aforementioned Bullard47 here.  He'll get to give us his excellent opinion on the main page for a day.  The picture is fantastic, as I wasn't expecting the Golden Dome to be worked in.

Back to the draft...I think we got excellent value for almost every pick we made.  Pollak seems to be a great steal for Polian and Co. at #59.  The crop of Interior Lineman wasn't very good up top this year, with Brandon Albert and Chilo Rachal as the only 2 Interior Lineman to get picked before Pollak.  He seems very excited to be joining the Colts (who wouldn't?), and said this yesterday:

"I couldn't have asked for a better way for it to work out," said Pollak, who has a chance at the first string because Indianapolis lost Jake Scott in free agency. "I'll get to learn from all of the older guys. When I spoke with coach (Tony) Dungy and (general manager Bill Polian), they told me they felt that my game was perfect for what they have there."

We picked 2 Tight Ends, and 1 WR, which I thought we'd do.  We really only had 2 TE in Clark and Fletcher, and we are dangerously thin at WR, especially with the health of Harrison still up in the air.  I think the thought is that if either Marvin isn't back yet, or one of the main 3 WR gets hurt, Clark can step in and play the slot receiver.  I'm also really excited to have a speedster to return punts and kicks in Pierre Garcon.  Watching the video posted below gets me excited.  I really can't remember the last guy the Colts had that, when he caught the ball on a return, you expected him to take it to the house.  I hope Garcon makes me feel that way. 

As much as it pains me to say as an ND grad, I'm very glad Mike Hart fell into our laps at pick 202.  Running backs always seem to make an immediate impact in the NFL, and I definitely see Hart playing a big role in 2008.  He NEVER fumbles the ball .  Maybe he can teach KK how to hold onto it.  Michigan has always loved running the slow progressin g, off tackle run, and Hart always seemed to find a sliver of daylight and burst through, just like Addai does now.  This will be a great asset running the stretch play.  He's used to long handoffs and running outside off-tackle, or further.  He's a great fit.

We all loved the Marcus Howard  pick.  We all know everything about him.  Great pick, especially for the 5th round.  I also liked the Philip Wheeler selection.  He is a head hunter, much like #21.  Some people mentioned we may move him to DE, which makes some sense, although he's never played on the DL before.  For right now, he seems like a 3rd down pass rusher, most likely as a 5th DL.  We'll have to see what happens in training camp.

I have to confess:  in the poll below, I gave the Colts a C, but only because Polian loves those C grades.  Overall I give the Colts a B+.  They back filled areas of need, but seemed to go too heavy at one certain position.  Also, without a first round pick, there doesn't seem to be, for this moment in time, that superstar pick.  Hopefully one of these guys becomes that.  Great job by the Polian, Coach Dungy, and the rest of the staff!