We are a little over three weeks away from the NFL Draft. There has been lots of trade speculation over the past few days. Let’s take a look into how those trades and all seven rounds of the draft could play out for the Indianapolis Colts.
Round 1, Pick 4: Anthony Richardson - QB, Florida
This is the most popular pick for the Colts, and for good reason. Richardson is a freak athlete at 6’4”, 244 pounds with a 4.44 40-yard dash. He has a howitzer of an arm and is less of a project than some have suggested. New head coach Shane Steichen would have a field day designing a scheme around the former Gator quarterback and could develop him into one of the top signal callers in the league.
While some have hinted at the Colts' infatuation with Will Levis, odds are Ballard and company are throwing out smoke screens to deter anyone from trading up to steal Richardson from them.
People point to Anthony Richardson's Florida State game as one of his worst. He completed only 33% of his passes (I get it). I actually think it was one of his best games. There's more examples we can look to but here's just a handful. pic.twitter.com/DlAr5tOdvG— Ted Nguyen (@FB_FilmAnalysis) April 2, 2023
Round 2, Pick 38 (From LV): Julius Brents - CB, Kansas State
A classic Chris Ballard move would be to trade back from the 35th overall pick. Trading just three spots back and acquiring a third-round pick in the process would be a no-brainer, especially with Brents on the board.
Another popular Colts’ pick, Brents has all the makings of a Chris Ballard player. Long arms, athletic, and explosive. At 6’3”, 198 pounds, Brents has 34” arms, ran a 4.53 40-yard dash, and posted a 41.5” vertical. With the departure of Stephon Gilmore, the Colts are in desperate need of a day-one starting cornerback, and Brents has all the tools to succeed at the next level.
NFL scouts tell us few guys boosted their draft stock more at @seniorbowl than K-State CB Julius Brents. 6030v w/ record-setting 82 7/8 wing. DB teach tape stuff here. Textbook tight-man focus.— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) February 17, 2023
Rarely see 1-on-1 rep where QB doesn’t even throw it. #TheDraftStartsInMOBILE™️ pic.twitter.com/DvZMizYPCF
Round 3, Pick 79: Jonathan Mingo - WR, Ole Miss
The Colts lost Parris Campbell in free agency and replaced him with Buffalo’s Isaiah Mckenzie. But they need to continue to add depth to the position and Mingo’s versatility is too valuable to pass up.
Mingo can operate from the slot, on the outside, or even as an in-line tight end or H-Back. Ole Miss used his versatility to their advantage to create mismatches at every level. Steichen could get creative with one of the biggest and most explosive receivers in the draft.
6'2" and 220 pounds with this in his bag?!?— Hayden Winks (@HaydenWinks) April 3, 2023
Jonathan Mingo is pretty interesting! pic.twitter.com/OIhYLkFe46
Round 3, Pick 100 (Via LV): Garrett Williams - CB, Syracuse
Williams was slated to be a second-round pick before tearing his ACL at the end of October The Syracuse cornerback can play man or zone and has solid ball skills at the catch point. While we don’t have any of his athletic testing, he certainly is worth the flier this late in the draft.
Garrett Williams: PLAYMAKER— PFF College (@PFF_College) September 24, 2022
Round 4, Pick 106: KJ Henry - Edge Rusher, Clemson
The Colts need to continue to add depth at edge rusher, so why not add a player with Henry’s profile. Henry led all Clemson defensive linemen with 50 total pressures last season and racked up 14 quarterback hits and five sacks.
He has been overshadowed by his teammates during this draft process, but his 4.63 40-yard dash at 6’4”, 251 pounds showcases his athleticism.
Need Edge talent outside the 1st?— Jared Tokarz (@JaredNFLDraft) January 31, 2023
KJ Henry #Clemson 6’4 255
Former 5 star recruit
Can play play the run/rush the passer well. Heavy Hands.
Spoke to 1 scout who thinks the gap between Murphy+ Henry is less than most think
Check him out @ Senior Bowlpic.twitter.com/Mf7I42gTcR
Round 5, Pick 138: YaYa Diaby - Edge Rusher, Louisville
Another freak athlete, Diaby’s stock has been steadily rising over the past few weeks. Diaby is an explosive pass rusher with a quick first step. He has the ability to get up the field and pressure the quarterback in an instant. He does struggle in the run game, but as a rotational piece, Diaby could excel.
YaYa Diaby (#6) is a firecracker off the edge. Day three pick with upside to be a rotational pass rusher. Holds his own against the run, too.— Kyle Smith (@Kyle_Smith1087) March 9, 2023
4.51 40, 9.65 RAS pic.twitter.com/211XPGPBlX
Round 5, Pick 162: Chandler Zavala - Guard, NC State
Zavala is a big-man who has been mocked in the third-to-fourth rounds. But if he’s available this late, Ballard won’t hesitate. He’s powerful as a blocker and finishes every block. He does miss his target occasionally when climbing to the next level, but he would be immediately in the mix to start at right guard in 2023.
Round 5, Pick 176: Bryce Ford-Wheaton - WR, West Virginia
Ford-Wheaton is a massively tall wide receiver with speed to burn. The Colts should double-dip in this draft to continue to add depth at receiver and Ford-Wheaton is the perfect prospect to take a flier on. His 6’4” frame would give Richardson another red zone target among Michael Pittman Jr., Alec Pierce, and Jelani Woods.
BRYCE-FORD WHEATON CATCHES BETWEEN FOUR PITT DEFENDERS pic.twitter.com/jvwi1TejCV— PFF College (@PFF_College) September 2, 2022
Round 7, Pick 221: Juice Scruggs - Center, Penn State
Scruggs is a strong center who was a captain at Penn State. He struggles to move in space, but is a solid pass protector. He would compete with Danny Pinter to back up Ryan Kelly.
Round 7, Pick 236: Dante Stills - Defensive Tackle, West Virginia
A slightly undersized defensive tackle, Stills would give Bradley some versatility in terms of depth. He’s disruptive as a pass rusher and holds his own against the run. He would piece a perfect addition to backup Buckner and Stewart.