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Video Thread: Julian Blackmon vs Oregon

NCAA Football: Utah at Stanford Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

The face-lift the Indianapolis Colts defense received this off-season only continued through the 2020 NFL Draft. Though 4 of the first 5 picks were offensive players, there was 1 man selected in the first three rounds that belongs to the defensive unit—Utah safety Julian Blackmon.

Blackmon is an athletic, and versatile, defensive back who is recovering from a recent torn ACL. The Colts clearly have a lot of confidence in Blackmon as a player, and to understand why, let’s turn to the tape he rolled out against the Oregon Ducks.

Obviously, the most important aspect of Blackmon’s progression, right now, is to recover fully from his injury. This shouldn’t be too difficult, as patience is easily accessible for GM Chris Ballard’s squad with Malik Hooker, Khari Willis and George Odum available for contribution.

Beyond that, Blackmon shows a clear aptitude for the type of defense that coordinator Matt Eberflus wants to run—with his ability to read and react at light speed and nail the hammer truculently. All the tools are in the tool-shed for Blackmon, he just needs to grasp how to consistently use them in whatever situation unfolds in front of him.