This offseason, we will be looking at all 90 players on the Colts' roster leading up to training camp, and after starting off yesterday by looking at a fan favorite in punter Pat McAfee, today we switch gears and look at a player who likely is an unknown to most Colts fans in wide receiver Ezell Ruffin.
Ruffin, a 6-0, 218 pound receiver out of San Diego State, went undrafted in the 2015 NFL Draft but was quickly signed by the Colts as an undrafted free agent. He played in just 32 games at San Diego State after redshirting in 2010, not playing in 2011, and then having his senior season shortened by injury in 2014, but he still managed to catch 111 passes for 1,877 yards and five touchdowns (averaging 16.9 yards per reception) during his time at the school. As a junior in 2013, he was named honorable mention All-Mountain West conference after catching 68 passes for 1,136 yards and three touchdowns (and having 43 of his 68 receptions go for a first down).
NFL.com's Lance Zierlein wrote of Ruffin that, "without separation speed or suddenness, [he] will likely struggle to get open against NFL competition. Ruffin's competitiveness as a run blocker will be appreciated, but the pass-catching skills will determine whether he gets a call on Day 3 (Rounds 4-7)." Obviously, Ruffin wasn't selected in the draft, but he's a tough wide receiver with good hands.
With the Colts, Ruffin joins a loaded wide receiver position that by default makes it an uphill climb for him to make the 53-man roster. T.Y. Hilton, Andre Johnson, Phillip Dorsett, and Donte Moncrief are clearly going to make the team, while guys like Duron Carter, Vincent Brown, and possibly even Griff Whalen could also make pushes for a roster spot. After them come the likes of Ryan Lankford and Josh Lenz, who were with the Colts in training camp last year, and Quan Bray and Ezell Ruffin, who join the Colts as undrafted free agents this year. Regardless of how they perform, they're likely to be all competing for just one roster spot. That's a tough situation for any player, especially an undrafted free agent, and that's why Ruffin is considered a long-shot to make the 53-man roster.