We’ve seen plenty of mock drafts over the past few weeks have the Colts taking a running back in the first round, but so far those mock drafts have had that back being Florida State’s Dalvin Cook.
In a new four-round mock draft, however, NFL Media’s Chad Reuter changed it up with the Colts taking a different running back in the first round: Christian McCaffrey. Here’s what Reuter had the Colts doing with their picks in the first four rounds:
1st round: Christian McCaffrey, RB, Stanford
McCaffrey has almost flown under the radar, but teams haven't forgotten about his talent.
2nd round: Ryan Anderson, OLB, Alabama
3rd round: Josh Jones, S, NC State
4th round: Trey Hendrickson, DE, Florida Atlantic
4th round (compensatory): Ezra Robinson, CB, Tennessee State
The selection of McCaffrey in the first round is... interesting, to say the least. That’s not to suggest that McCaffrey isn’t a good football player - because he’s talented, versatile, and had a great collegiate career. But would he really be the best fit for the Colts in the first round? And will he really go ahead of Dalvin Cook? Both of those questions will probably be met with more debate than whether McCaffrey is a good player or not.
Reuter actually listed McCaffrey as a running back/wide receiver and later clarified that by saying some teams will see him as a running back and some will see him as a wideout. The Colts would probably draft him to be a running back, but any team that takes him would be stupid not to utilize his versatility in a big way. He’s a capable running back, receiver, and returner - basically, he’s a playmaker. That’s something the Colts offense could really use from the running back position, too.
But there’s just the lingering need that’s hovering over the draft of defense. Any running back the Colts take in the first round would need to be without a doubt the best player available, because the Colts can’t afford to pass up on good defenders without being absolutely sure of the back they’d be taking instead. I think Reuter realizes that, too, as he has the Colts taking defense with each of their next four picks. One other interesting thing that should be noted is that Reuter has the Colts taking Alabama linebacker Ryan Anderson in the second round - with Tim Williams still on the board (he has Williams going early in the third round to the 49ers). There’s been some talk recently about Williams possibly slipping down some draft boards, but it’s an interesting selection nonetheless to have the Colts take Anderson over Williams.
Ultimately, mock drafts are for nothing more than getting fans talking about the draft and giving them a feeling for what could happen. In that regard, it’s sometimes particularly useful to take a look at the reaction to mock drafts that are abnormal - and the Colts taking McCaffrey in the first round is something we haven’t really seen much of in mock drafts. So what would you think about that pick (and the others listed here), Colts fans?