The Indianapolis Colts made a trade on Friday night with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and in addition to moving just four spots back in the second/third rounds, they also made a significant jump, swapping fourth round picks that resulted in the Colts now picking 109th overall instead of 128th overall. And with that 109th overall pick, the Indianapolis Colts selected University of Central Florida safety Clayton Geathers.
The Colts needed a safety, and they drafted one here with their first pick on day three, the 109th overall pick. He is a hard hitting safety but will miss tackles, and he's better against the run than against the pass. This might have been a little high for him, but he could be a nice developmental player for Chuck Pagano. Geathers likely won't push either Mike Adams or Dwight Lowery for a starting spot, but it's possible that he could compete for some playing time.
He played in 53 career games (starting 52 games in a row to end his career) at UCF and recorded 383 tackles (19 for loss), a sack, five forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, three interceptions, and 30 passes defensed. He was named a team captain in his senior season in 2014 and was also named the team's most outstanding defensive back at the UCF awards banquet. He participated in this year's Senior Bowl as well. He is the sixth member of his family to play in the NFL - but the previous five were all defensive linemen.
Here's what our own Andrew Aziz wrote about Geathers in his draft guide (available for purchase here):
Geathers has a lot of experience at safety, being a 4- year starter. He is a good athlete and has good instincts in coverage. He plays the centerfield spot well and has the fluidity to change directions quickly. He has good closing speed and makes up a lot of ground in a good amount of time. He can be an impactful hitter but misses way too many tackles and that's due to bad form. He also must learn how to play more patiently and pick his spots better.
Overall, Geathers has a higher ceiling than some around him, but must have a smart coach develop his tackling skills. The potential is there.
NFL Ceiling: Top 15 Safety
NFL Draft Projection: 5th Round
Here are the Colts' picks in the draft:
- First Round - 29th overall pick - Phillip Dorsett, WR, Miami
- Third Round - 65th overall pick (from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers) - D'Joun Smith, CB, Florida Atlantic
- Third Round - 93rd overall pick - Henry Anderson, DE, Stanford
- Fourth Round - 109th overall pick (from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers) - Clayton Geathers, S, UCF
- Fifth Round - 165th overall pick
- Sixth Round - 204th overall pick
- Sixth Round - 206th overall pick (from the Seattle Seahawks)
- Seventh Round - 244th overall pick (from the Dallas Cowboys)
- Seventh Round - 255th overall pick (compensatory pick)
Here are the Colts remaining needs (in no particular order):
- Running Back
- Offensive Lineman
- Inside Linebacker
- Pass Rusher