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Colts Prospect Interviews: Ole Miss WR DaMarkus Lodge

Could Lodge be a potential Colts target in the draft?

NCAA Football: Tennessee-Martin at Mississippi Matt Bush-USA TODAY Sports

The Colts prospect interviews are rolling along as we approach these players’ Pro Days. Today’s player interview is Ole Miss WR DaMarkus Lodge. The Colts need more depth at the receiver position and the acrobatic Lodge would be an excellent fit.

The interview will be towards the bottom of the page as we talk about his how he wins at the line of scrimmage, his insane catch against Vanderbilt, and how he fits in the Colts’ receiver group.



6’1” 202 pounds


40 Time: 4.55 / 10-yard split: 1.6 / Bench Press: 11 Reps / Vertical Jump: 33.5 inches / Broad Jump: 119 inches / 3-Cone: 7.06 seconds

Career Stats:

122 catches for 1,790 yards and 14 touchdowns with a yards per catch of 14.6 in his college career.

Fit with the Colts:

DaMarkus Lodge would be an excellent fit in the Colts’ offense. With TY Hilton as the “Z” receiver and Devin Funchess likely lining up as the big slot, the Colts need an outside “X” receiver who can win off the line and catch balls in traffic. Those are two areas that Lodge excels in. His releases are superb and his ability to make acrobatic catches in traffic is perhaps the best in the class. He would be able to settle in perfectly on the outside in the Colts’ offense and perform well in this potential role.

Film Room

First thing that really pops with Lodge is his releases off the line. He wins in a ton of ways from quick feet to being more physical than corners. Lodge creates a lot of separation at the line of scrimmage.

Lodge wins in traffic as well. His ability to get vertical and high point passes is superb. He is an acrobat in the air, and he knows how to twist and contort his body to make catches most players struggle to make.

Lodge is unafraid of going over the middle. He can work in the intermediate areas and fight through contact for catches. He also has strong hands and shields his body well in traffic.

Lodge seems to love to block which I’m sure has caught the eye of both Frank Reich and Chris Ballard.


ZH: You played with two NFL-caliber wide receivers at Ole Miss in AJ Brown and DK Metcalf. What was that receiver room like during the season?

DL: Well it was actually a unique experience. Once you get guys that are of that caliber then guys like myself even, it’s usually a selfish room with a lot of egos. It actually wasn’t that way with us. We held each other accountable every day no matter what we did on and off the field. We went to work every single day and put in extra work every day together as a group. It was certainly a blessing to play with those guys and learn from them and have them learn from me also.

ZH: Your Junior year Ole Miss went from starting Shea Patterson to Jordan Ta’amu late in the season. What was that transition like going from Shea to Jordan?

DL: It actually wasn’t a hard transition at all because everything we did, we did together so if one quarterback was out there then all of the quarterbacks were out there, from walk-ons to scholarship guys. We had been throwing with Jordan all offseason in the summer so we were pretty familiar with him and he was familiar with us. It was pretty easy getting him in and connecting with him real fast because we were working with him for so long.

ZH: You were invited to the Shrine Game this offseason. How was that experience for you?

DL: Definitely a great experience, especially my favorite part, which was the hospital. Just seeing those kids and how their faces lit up when we walked in. Spending time with those kids, and learning their stories, and how they came up, and what they are going through, and try to be an inspiration to them was definitely my favorite part.

It was a great experience though, I got to meet a lot of guys. I met a lot of NFL coaches and got to learn NFL terminology out of their playbooks so I really appreciate the East West Shrine for having me.

ZH: Let’s talk a little about your game now. The first thing that stands out is your releases off of the line of scrimmage. How did you master the ability of winning off of the line?

DL: Well I’ve kind of been working on it for a long time with my trainer, David Robertson. He would always tell me that if you can’t get off press coverage then it doesn’t matter if you run a great route or run a 4.3 even. If you can’t get off of the line then all that stuff doesn’t matter. I’ve been working on press releases for a while man. I’ve got so many (moves) that I can just pull out and beat a cornerback with all game, so that is definitely something I’ve worked on.

ZH: You are an acrobat in the air as you make a ton of difficult catches. Is that just a natural trait that you have or was that something you tried to work on?

DL: Well, with things like that and making those type of catches, the circus catches, as people will call them, it kind of has to happen naturally. That was kind of just God-given, man, and I never really just worked on making crazy catches but they just seem to happen for me (laughs).

ZH: Of all your crazy catches you made in your career at Ole Miss, which one was the most memorable one?

DL: It is crazy because I have two actually. Number one was the one handed touchdown against Vanderbilt (shown below). I caught it on Joejuan Williams. It was a fade route, I opened up and reached out with my left hand. I’m right handed so I really don’t catch the ball with my left hand at all really so it kind of just like stuck and I got my two feet down and that was just crazy. I’ve always dreamed of catching a one handed touchdown all my life and I finally did it so that was by far my favorite one.

My second favorite one, I caught a screen route and then I hurdled a guy and once I hit the ground, I juked another guy so that had to be my second favorite one (shown below).

ZH: I’m glad you brought up the Vandy catch because I wanted to ask you about it. I noticed you got two feet down when you only needed to get the one. Just what was going through your mind on that one?

DL: (Laughs) Well you know, I was working on the toe tapping and things for so long so it just kind of happened naturally. A lot of my catches that I catch on the sideline, I honestly don’t even try to do the toe tapping thing, it just kind of happens. When I came from the sideline on that play, AJ Brown came up to me and was like “Bro you caught that with one hand AND got two feet down?? That was a circus bro.” I was like dang, I didn’t even know that so I don’t know it just kind of naturally happens (laughs).

ZH: Switching topics a tad, I noticed on film that you like to do the dirty work. You are a very strong run blocker for a receiver. Is that an area of your game that you take pride in?

DL: Yes sir, I definitely do. I’m not the biggest of the group or the most stand-outish of them. You know those guys got the big muscles and six packs and all of that so I was always called the “little guy” so I kind of just took it upon myself to work on blocking and just compete every play. You know blocking is straight effort. Little technique but straight effort so you can control how you block and not be a selfish teammate. It was something I took upon myself to get better at because I was God awful at it my freshman year.

ZH: Who was the toughest cornerback you faced in your college career?

DL: Oh wow.... there a bunch of guys man. I’d probably have to say Vernon Hargreaves which was my sophomore year when we went down to Florida. Hargreaves was the toughest corner as far as being physical, he was a technician, he was a very smart football player and where he was supposed to be every single time, so definitely Vernon Hargreaves.

ZH: Which NFL player do you compare yourself to most/model your game after?

DL: I watch a lot of guys. I pick and choose from a ton of them. Michael Thomas, he’s a big physical guy who is going to go up and catch the ball no matter where it is with his catch radius. I get a lot of my releases and top of my routes from Odell, he is very good with releases and giving a little sauce at the top of the route. I model my toe tapping after AB. He kind of made it popular with the “Tony Toe Tap” thing. I kind of pick and choose from a lot of guys though.

ZH: Last two questions are going to be Colts centered. First off, the Colts’ receiving core features two talented players in Devin Funchess and TY Hilton. What would you bring to that receiving room with those guys?

DL: I think me just being the person that I am. I bring high energy to everything I do from film session to weight room, I’m always up dancing and getting everybody going. I’m also a student of the game, though. I can dissect a defense and I think I’m a pretty good route runner. I can get separation at the top of my routes. I would just come in and compete with those guys every day.

ZH: Lastly, what would it be like to catch passes from a quarterback like Andrew Luck in the NFL compared to playing with college quarterbacks (no slight to Jordan Ta’amu or Shea Patterson intended)?

DL: Man.... That would be awesome. It still doesn’t feel real at this point that I’ll be playing with the guys that I’ve been looking up to for the last decade. I don’t know man, I just can’t wait. Like you said, no disrespect to Jordan or Shea but those guys in the NFL are the top of the top. They’ve been doing this for a while so I know there will be a lot of accurate balls and they’ll put the ball where only I can get it. I think my true talents will actually show better than my college career at the next level.