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Report: Colts Met Virtually with Northwestern CB Greg Newsome II Recently Prior to the 2021 NFL Draft

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 02 Northwestern at Indiana Photo by James Black/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

According to The Draft Network’s Justin Melo, the Indianapolis Colts are among the pro teams that have met virtually with Northwestern cornerback Greg Newsome II recently prior to the 2021 NFL Draft:

Regarding Newsome:

“[T]he 6’1”, 190 pound junior cornerback recorded 12 tackles (8 solo), an interception, and 9 pass breakups during 6 starts for the Wildcats in 2020—earning AP Third-Team All-American and First-Team All-Big Ten honors respectively.”

Here’s NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah’s scouting report on Newsome, who he currently ranks as the NFL Draft’s 31st best prospect overall:

Rank 31

Greg Newsome II

Northwestern · CB · Junior

Newsome is a tall, agile cornerback. He played a lot of off coverage in Northwestern’s scheme. He stays crouched in his pedal and is always under control. He’s fluid when he opens up to turn and carry vertical routes. He stays in phase and he can locate/play the ball. He doesn’t have an explosive plant/drive, but he does have the awareness to anticipate throws. He has excellent instincts versus the run and pass. Against the run, he will hang on blocks too long at times, but he is a solid tackler once he frees himself. I expect Newsome to develop into a reliable starting cornerback very early in his NFL career.

Here’s the latest draft nuggets on Newsome:

The Colts could really use another long-term answer at the starting outside cornerback position—as both veteran starters Xavier Rhodes (30) and T.J. Carrie (30) are set to hit free agency and are starting to get a little long in the tooth regardless if they’re ultimately re-signed (although each played well in their debut campaigns with the Colts in 2020).

2019 second round pick Rock Ya-Sin struggled during his ‘sophomore season’—having been overly grabby and physical, when he didn’t need to be—as he was generally in good position to still make a play in coverage.

Meanwhile, another promising (would-be) second-year cornerback, Marvell Tell, sat out the entire 2020 season because of COVID-19 concerns—and may need an adjustment period to shake off any rust after a year of football inactivity.

It’s unclear whether the Colts value cornerbacks enough in their zone dominant scheme to select a top prospect at the position in the first round, but Newsome is about as polished and ready to contribute as almost any rookie cornerback in this year’s draft class.

That being said, the Colts may be able to trade down and recoup some draft pick(s) lost in the recent Carson Wentz trade—and select Newsome a few spots later than at #21 overall.

He fits what they’re looking for at cornerback though—long, fluid covering routes, very instinctive, featuring ball skills, and is a willing tackler in run support.

(Now, if there were just some indications of his actual arm measurements—although he looks to have more than enough requisite length.)

Newsome’s among the top cornerback prospects to monitor for the Colts ahead of late April’s NFL Draft—as he’s NFL ready, fills a need, and still has upside to grow and develop into one of the league’s better to elite starting outside cornerbacks.