Our player-by-player look at the Indianapolis Colts' 90-man offseason roster continues today with another linebacker, rookie Amarlo Herrera.
Herrera was drafted by the Colts in the sixth round of the 2015 NFL Draft out of Georgia, where he played collegiately. During his four years there, Herrera played in 54 games and started for his final three seasons at inside linebacker, as he racked up 334 tackles (21 for loss), 3.5 sacks, three picks (returning one for a touchdown), five forced fumbles, and a fumble recovery. He showed off impressive leadership skills for the Bulldogs and was undoubtedly very productive during his career there despite not being the most athletic player.
He does project best to be a 3-4 inside linebacker in the NFL, which is precisely what he will be playing with the Colts. They liked him enough to draft him in the sixth round, but that doesn't mean that Herrera's spot on the roster is secured. The Colts already have Jerrell Freeman and D'Qwell Jackson as their starters at inside linebacker, and then Nate Irving figures to play a key backup role. Former Canadian Football League standout Henoc Muamba will also be competing for a depth spot, as will Carlos Fields and undrafted rookie Junior Sylvestre. So make no mistake about it: despite being drafted by the team, Herrera's spot is in no way guaranteed. Rather, he'll have to compete in training camp just like the others. The Colts obviously saw something they liked in Herrera when they drafted him, and it will be up to him to show those skills - the skills that got him drafted and allowed him to have a productive career at Georgia - in training camp in order to make the team. The Colts have depth spots open at inside linebacker, and if Herrera can show that he is worth keeping around as a depth defensive player (who can continue to develop) and make a mark on special teams, he will have a good shot at making the 53-man roster out of training camp.