2013 NFL Draft: Top 5 Priorities for the Indianapolis Colts

1 of 6

Indianapolis Colts Must Address These 5 Priorities in 2013 NFL Draft

James Lang-USA TODAY Sports
James Lang-USA TODAY Sports

What’s next for the Indianapolis Colts?

After improving their win total from two to 11 in their first season post-Peyton Manning, the Colts will try to dethrone the Houston Texans as AFC South champions. The Colts wasted no time when, on the first day of the 2013-14 NFL calendar year, they agreed to contracts with Gosder Cherilus, Greg Toler, Erik Walden, Donald Thomas and Lawrence Sidbury.

Did the team overachieve last season? They’ll try to build off their success and avoid a sophomore slump from Andrew Luck. Luck now has the benefit of having a veteran quarterback who he can learn from, Matt Hasselbeck. The Colts signed Hasselbeck immediately after the Tennessee Titans released him.

How will the Colts offense respond now that Bruce Arians left for the Arizona Cardinals? Are there enough weapons in the defensive backfield who can protect this team when they face high-powered offenses? Are they prepared to protect Luck for the next decade from Texans defensive end J.J. Watt? In two games against the Colts in 2012, Watt had 14 tackles with seven stuffs, three sacks, one forced fumble and one pass deflection.

The Texans aren’t the only team who can threaten the Colts. In a do-or-die season for coaches and management, the Titans are desperate to field a winning team. Despite a 6-10 record and a team that surrendered 471 points, the Titans were close in some games. If the Titans can start winning games they’re supposed to (e.g. 0-13 Colts, 1-9 Jaguars), they’ll find themselves in playoff contention when Week 17 rolls around.

This slideshow features the top five priorities for the Colts during the 2013 NFL Draft. The Colts need to find some starters, key role players and depth. Continue with slideshow.

2 of 6

Cornerback

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Although the Colts added Greg Toler and re-signed Darius Butler, they could use more depth. That could help them in potential playoff matchups with the New England Patriots and Denver Broncos. Let’s not forget that when the Patriots hosted the Colts in 2012, the Colts surrendered 59 points. This is more of a mid-round, even late-round concern

3 of 6

Offensive Lineman

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

More depth is needed on the offensive line. As far as starters, are the Colts confident that they’re protected from J.J. Watt?

4 of 6

Outside Linebacker

Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports
Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports

Another pass-rush specialist is needed opposite of Robert Mathis, who turned 32 years old in Feb. Are the Colts confident that Jerry Hughes or Erik Walden is that man? If not, they should invest a high draft pick on someone.

5 of 6

Running Back

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Find a complementary back for Vick Ballard.

6 of 6

Safety

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Antoine Bethea and newly-acquired LaRon Landry aren’t a bad safety tandem. But the Colts do need some depth behind them. Both players have an injury history.

Joshua Huffman is a contributor for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter, “Like” him on Facebook, or add him to your LinkedIn and Google networks.


Around the Web