Indianapolis Colts 2013 NFL Mock Draft, Week 3: 7 Rounds
Peyton Manning & Andrew Luck
The Indianapolis Colts had an astonishing 2012, despite minimal expectations coming in. After receiving the first overall pick, the Colts chose current franchise quarterback Andrew Luck. Luck was mature enough in the fourth quarter and showed enough poise throughout the year to earn the team a wild card berth, despite lacking talent in key areas. With an estimated $44 million in cap room, the team has already made a splash in free agency this offseason. But general manager Ryan Grigson understands the Colts best starting point when building a new team is in the secondary rather than the trenches. From there, the team can look to build around its quarterback Andrew Luck, by giving him pieces that will fit into the new system offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton. With free agency occurring this week, the Colts chose to release both Donnie Avery and Austin Collie, and I believe they should draft a third receiver and allow T.Y Hilton to develop into the second receiver position. It will all come down to how the Colts make the transition from veteran players like Dwight Freeney to the new faces of the defense. The Colts defense is certainly where the draft will be focused on, looking to change the tone of games and rely less on Andrew Luck’s heroics. For 2013, the Colts have shifted higher up the ladder towards becoming a Super Bowl contender. After gaining spots in the power rankings all of last year, the team looks to develop on its strengths and make a playoff run, if not winning the division.
Round 1: Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
Desmond Trufant is the best cover corner in the draft, and he would fit in nicely alongside Vontae Davis if not this year, surely in the future. Trufant plays an aggressive man-to-man defense that would also work well, and with his phenomenal footwork and agility he will certainly be better on the depth chart than some of the current Colts CB’s. The Colts already have kept Cassius Vaughn and Darius Butler so look Trufant to make a strong play for the nickel position should he be drafted by the Colts.
Round 3: Tavarres King, WR, Georgia
With the Colts acquisition of Laron Landry during free agency and the ability of Antoine Bethea, the Colts no longer are desperate for safety help. Therefore, they can spring for a receiver in the third round. Tavarres King matches the mold of Pep Hamilton's big body outside receiver. Playing in the SEC, King is tough, although scouts say his hands do need some work. Scouts compare him to current Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Emmanuel Sanders who the Colts have been rumored to be speaking to this offseason.
Round 4: Brian Winters, OG, Kent State
The Colts will be continuing to fortify their offensive line, a weakness of the team that has not been assessed thus far in free agency. Therefore in the fourth round the Colts will be able to get someone along the lines of Brian Winters from Kent State. Winters has been compared to former Colt Jake Scott and has phenomenal fundamentals. He finishes plays and has great flexibility despite towering over smaller ends, even at the NFL level. Also, despite his height, film shows him firing off the ball in short-yardage situations, making him a desirable combo-blocker. The Colts should like most teams have their eyes set on Winters, as despite a sluggish combine that was blamed on a pectoral, 24 teams showed up to his pro day at Kent State, and his stock has risen from the sixth to potentially the fourth round.
Round 6: Ray Graham, RB, Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh has produced some very good running backs at the professional level. Ray Graham is back on that track after a strong 2012 senior season, one in which he was rebounding from a torn ACL. This absolutely effected his stock negatively, but Graham was an absolute workhorse at Pitt, carrying the ball 222 times. Very comparable to Vick Ballard, and with Donald Brown's contract expiring at the end of 2013, this pick makes sense. The Colts have expressed interest in Graham, and spoke to him at the East-West Bowl this year.
Round 7: Meshak Williams, OLB, Kansas State
Meshak Williams is a very good player in the shadow of great players. The linebacker is a very effective at disrupting plays, with 8.5 sacks and three forced fumbles last year at Kansas State. A bit undersized, Williams should fall into the Colts late round draft plan. The Colts certainly still need to sure up some depth at the linebacker position, despite the major acquisition of Erik Walden.
Round 7: Zach Boren, FB, Ohio State
Out of Ohio State University , fullback and team captain Zach Boren is projected by CBS Sports to be the first fullback that may slip into the late 7th round or free agency. Because of his leadership and ability to play on both sides of the ball, the Colts should have an interest in Boren, and would be wise to let him slip into free agency if they have the Mr. Irrelevant pick.