According to longtime ESPN NFL Draft Analyst Mel Kiper Jr. (subscription), the Indianapolis Colts could be looking at wide receivers to bolster their passing attack, as he has Frank Reich’s squad selecting Alabama wide receiver Jerry Jeudy:
Jerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama
The Colts didn’t have much injury luck at receiver this season. T.Y Hilton missed six games. Free-agent signing Devin Funchess only made it one game, catching three passes. Second-round pick Parris Campbell caught just 18 passes in seven games. They could use a talent boost here, particularly with Hilton only signed for one more season. My comp for Jeudy for the past few months has been former Colts star Marvin Harrison, based mostly around his route-running; Jeudy is already advanced as a route runner and is smooth out of his breaks. He should test well at the combine, too. He’d help Jacoby Brissett on Day 1.
The 6’1”, 192 pound junior wideout caught 77 receptions for 1,163 receiving yards (15.1 ypr avg.) and 10 touchdown receptions this past season—en route to becoming a First-Team All-SEC selection by the league’s coaches.
It was a consecutive 1,000+ yard season and 10+ touchdown season for Jeudy, as he previously caught 68 receptions for 1,315 receiving yards (19.3 ypr avg.) and 14 touchdown receptions as a sophomore in 2018 for the Crimson Tide.
He ranks 5th all-time in Alabama program history with 159 career receptions and 4th all-time with 2,742 career receiving yards respectively.
Of course, any time a prospect earns lofty comparisons to the greatest wide receiver in Colts franchise history (*and Hall of Famer*), Marvin Harrison, it’s important to take notice.
Here’s what others are saying on Jeudy:
My first 2020 draft hot take:— Matt Miller (@nfldraftscout) April 30, 2019
I get @obj vibes from Jerry Jeudy.
Jerry Jeudy is a master technician & his stop/start explosiveness is off the chart! https://t.co/LMns5uv6Y4— Daniel Jeremiah (@MoveTheSticks) September 16, 2019
Bama WR Jerry Jeudy = smooth operator. He’s such an easy mover. Reminds me a little of Robert Woods coming out of USC. Same frame, same understanding/instincts. https://t.co/sQd4wQLaEg— Daniel Jeremiah (@MoveTheSticks) July 2, 2019
I like Jerry Jeudy a lot, he's an outstanding WR prospect. But I've been saying this since the summer: he's not a lock top-10 guy.— Dane Brugler (@dpbrugler) December 31, 2019
I've done one mock draft so far this year and Jeudy went 16th. That's much more likely than top-5. https://t.co/uTJmUkIJ8D
I’ve never studied a college WR with better route running skills than Alabama WR Jerry Jeudy. For young aspiring WR’s, Jeudy is a technique clinic!— Todd McShay (@McShay13) January 2, 2020
Imagine being a foot away from Jerry Jeudy and still not being able to touch him. Dude is special pic.twitter.com/McYVQRFVOD— Mike Renner (@PFF_Mike) January 22, 2020
This upcoming wide receiver draft class is expected to be loaded, and Jeudy is among the top wideout prospects comprising it—with terrific route running skills and explosiveness.
The Colts really need help at wide receiver this offseason too.
Now 30 years old, star wide receiver T.Y. Hilton isn’t getting any younger, and the team has struggled to find a bonafide #2 wide receiver to effectively complement him on the other side since former franchise great (and late career) Reggie Wayne retired.
It’s unclear whether the team will re-sign wideout Devin Funchess after his year ended prematurely following a season-ending collar bone injury—although so far, the organization has appeared to have left that door open.
Meanwhile, rookie wide receiver Parris Campbell underwhelmed in his debut campaign—battling some injuries himself, while Chester Rogers is a free agent, and Daurice Fountain is presumably still rehabilitating from a season-ending ankle surgery.
3rd-year pro Zach Pascal is slated to return, but is ideally suited to serve as more of a 3rd or 4th wide receiver on the team’s depth chart.
There’s a lot of question marks with the Colts current wide receiver group, and Jeudy would provide a long-term building block to hopefully answer some of those lingering uncertainties—with the chance to make an immediate impact.
If Jeudy’s available at #13, he should be under strong consideration for the Colts, but the bigger question in Indianapolis could be who’s actually throwing him the football in 2020.