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NFL Mock Draft 2015: ESPN Projects La'El Collins to the Colts in First Round

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In the NFL Nation mock draft on Monday, the ESPN NFL reporters projected the first round of the draft, and ESPN's Colts reporter, Mike Wells, had the team drafting LSU offensive lineman La'El Collins.

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As you might have already noticed, with the NFL Draft coming up later this week there have been a lot of mock drafts released in recent days and that trend will continue until the first round of the draft kicks off on Thursday night.

On Monday afternoon, the NFL Nation writers for ESPN.com - 32 reporters who cover the 32 NFL franchises - conducted a mock draft of the first round.  ESPN's Colts analyst, Mike Wells, was the one making the pick for Indianapolis, and he had them selecting LSU offensive tackle La'El Collins with the 29th overall pick.

The Colts have concerns about starting right tackle Gosder Cherilus' health after he battled injuries all last season. Collins played tackle during his final two seasons at LSU. The Colts used 11 different starting lineups on the offensive line last season. They're looking for stability up front to protect franchise quarterback Andrew Luck. -- Mike Wells

Offensive line has been a very popular pick for the Colts throughout the entire draft process, and while they do have bigger needs on the defensive side of the football, La'El Collins would be one of the few linemen that would make a lot of sense, and he would likely be the best value pick possible at that point for the Colts.  The three players selected after Collins - LSU corner Jalen Collins, Texas defensive tackle Malcom Brown, and Florida State defensive tackle Eddie Goldman - would all have also been good picks for the Colts, meaning that Wells had options on who to pick.  He choose the top value selection with Collins, and he would be a nice addition to the offensive line to be sure.

As Wells noted, the Colts have legitimate questions about Gosder Cherilus and his health, and while the hope is that he will be back by June, the team is in a wait and see mode with their right tackle.  La'El Collins could possibly give the Colts the long-term right tackle that they will certainly be looking for (either this year or next) and would be a nice piece to the offensive line, undoubtedly improving it.  Collins can also play guard and perhaps could even be better suited there, but either way he would help at a position that the Colts could use a long-term answer at - whether at right tackle or at right guard.

I would certainly give preference to the defensive side of the football for the Colts, but they also have stated that they will go with the best player available and have made it clear that there are questions about the right tackle position.  If La'El Collins were to fall all the way to 29, he would be a good pick for the Colts to help shore up their offensive line for quarterback Andrew Luck.

What are your thoughts on the Colts possibly drafting La'El Collins in the first round?