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Old 05-14-2008, 05:49 AM    (permalink
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Default 2009 Draft thread

Never too early to look to the future, right? Right now, I'd say the teams biggest draft needs looking to the future are:

1) UT - The one thing the Colts have been missing in Dungy's tenure in Indianapolis is that dominant 3-tech that can get after the QB from the interior. Granted, usually these talents go early (Glenn Dorsey at 5 this year is the latest example), and the Colts have had one top 15 draft pick since Dungy arrived (Dungy's first year here, when Freeney was brought in), and they've tried to address it numerous ways, drafting several projects and even signing Corey Simon in FA. Still, it would be nice to get that interior pass rusher to see just how dominant the defense can get.

2) CB - Kelvin Hayden is a free agent at season's end, Marlin Jackson is a free agent in 2009. Dante Hughes can't replace both, and personally I don't see Tim Jennings doing a good job replacing either. If either has to be replaced, more depth will be needed, so this could become a position of need come draft time.

3) WR - I list this as a need because of Marvin Harrison. Marvin is an all-time great, but if legal troubles don't get him (they likely won't), and injury troubles don't get him (unknown either way), he's still 36 and in the twilight of a HOF career. The Colts run a lot of 3 WR as well as 2 TE, so getting another WR could wind up a priority.

4) RB - Addai is a great number 1 option, and Rhodes is a fine number 2, but Rhodes is old, and I'm not sold on what's behind him on the depth chart. I'd like to see the Colts draft a solid APB to pair with Addai for the future.

That's all I can think of at the moment. IMO, this team is stacked with talent. What do you think?
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Old 05-15-2008, 09:21 AM    (permalink
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I'd chime in that I think the Colts will need to draft a safety to possibly replace Bethea should he not be resigned after 2009. A kickoff/punt returner would be nice too. While we are at it, how about someone to fill the big shoes of Jim Sorgi? His contract runs out in 2010, but would the Colts not bring in someone to compete against him before then? Another prospect for RT to replace Diem eventually would be wise imo as well. Don't really see the heir to Diem on the roster right now.

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Old 05-15-2008, 08:47 PM    (permalink
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My potential needs for the Colts are as follows...

-RT(We might soon have to replace Ryan Diem since we are paying him too much and his contract might be up soon)

-DT(We have a decent DT rotation now, but Im still looking for our dominant presence like a Tommie Harris. Wow is all I can say if we had Tommie Harris on this D-line)

-WR(Obviously a position of need once Harrison retires which could be sooner rather than later. I still would prefer then not to draft a WR in the 1st round though)

-QB(I wouldnt mind us drafting our QB of the future behind Peyton to learn for a couple of years. Im sick of seeing Jim Sorgi on this team, he really sucks at playing QB)
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Old 05-20-2008, 01:43 PM    (permalink
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DT Vance Walker of Georgia Tech is my early favorite for the Colts right now, FWIW. Last year was his first starting for an aggressive Georgia Tech defense, and he had 8.5 sacks and 14 TFLs. That's great. Depending on what his weight is exactly, maybe he can play some DE too. He's the guy I'll try to watch the most of this season, I think he could be a big addition to the interior, as Darrell Reid leaves in FA.

I'd also like to get a Darren Sproles type back, as a back who can be a dynamic return man. Although I don't really see a guy like that right now, and anyways the Colts could re-sign Dom Rhodes or Chad Simpson culd be ready to go.
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Old 07-29-2008, 01:43 AM    (permalink
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Default Get inside Bill Polian's head.

Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journel Sentinel does a great feature leading up to the Draft where he interviews a bunch of general managers and scouts, getting their insight and tallying votes as to the highest ranked prospects at their positions.

I haven't seen all the '08 Draft position articles, just five - QB, RB & FB, WR & TE, OL, and DL - but I thought I'd copy and paste Bill Polian's comments from them to help us get potential insight into his/the Colts' train of thought when it comes to the Draft. So here goes:

Quarterbacks
  • When Indianapolis President Bill Polian refers to the class as having "one contender and the rest pretenders," it's understood that he ranks Boston College's Matt Ryan head and shoulders above the pack. Of Ryan, Polian said, " I never say 'can't miss' but Matt Ryan has really no down side."
  • 3. JOE FLACCO, Delaware (6-6, 237, 4.84, 1-2) - "I don't want to say he has presence and poise because it's I-AA," Indianapolis President Bill Polian said. "Having said that, I realize Phil Simms was (Division I-AA), too."
  • 5. JOHN DAVID BOOTY (Southern California: 6-2, 216, 4.92, 3) - "He really has no down side," Polian said. "He's a winner, No. 1. No. 2, he's a pretty resourceful guy. I like his arm strength, his accuracy, his delivery."
  • 10. MATT FLYNN, Louisiana State (6-2, 229, 4.79, 5) - "He is the one that could (start) in the right situation," Polian said. "He's a battler and he's won a title."

Runningbacks & Fullbacks
  • If the Indianapolis Colts had a high pick, they wouldn't shy away from McFadden.

    "There are issues there, and there's always going to be issues with certain players," Colts president Bill Polian said. "But my sense is that it's manageable. You have to recognize it and manage it."

    Polian prefers McFadden to Peterson because, as he put it, "his fifth gear. He pulls away from you in a heartbeat. He's quick-twitch, tough and elusive. He can throw the ball. He can catch it. Bo Jackson is what you think about with this guy."
  • 2. JONATHAN STEWART, Oregon (5-10, 235, 4.46, 1) - "You will be thrilled to get him," Indianapolis president Bill Polian said. "A workhorse. Hard-nosed. Fast. Punishing."
  • 4. FELIX JONES, Arkansas (5-10, 210, 4.45, 1-2) - "If Felix Jones played for West Virginia," said Polian, "you'd be talking about him in the same breath as Mendenhall and Stewart. He only suffers by comparison to the guy he's playing with."
  • 5. JAMAAL CHARLES, Texas (5-11, 199, 4.40, 1-2) - "He suffers from Texas running back syndrome," Polian said. "How many of them have made it big? Ricky Williams didn't make it big."
  • 1. MATT FORTE, Tulane (6-1, 221, 4.44, 2-3) - "If you like Marion Barber, you're going to love Forte," Polian said. "But he doesn't have the speed, the acceleration and the explosion of the top guys."

Wide Receivers & Tight Ends
  • 1. DEVIN THOMAS, Michigan State (6-2, 213, 4.41, 1) - "He's got so many tools that it's impossible not to fall in love with him," Indianapolis President Bill Polian said.
  • 4. DeSEAN JACKSON, California (5-10, 171, 4.38, 1-2) - "I mean, he's a great player," Polian said. "But those small guys don't prosper in the league. That's the bottom line."
  • 1. FRED DAVIS, Southern California (6-3, 254, 4.67, 1-2) - "His height doesn't bother me," Polian said. "I don't know if he's as good as Dallas Clark but he's damn good. In my view, he's a first-round player."
  • 5. JOHN CARLSON, Notre Dame (6-5, 252, 4.72, 2-3) - "He's not lumbering," Polian said. "He's got a good feel for getting open."

Offensive linemen
  • 2. RYAN CLADY, Boise State (6-6, 311, 5.17, 1) - Will he be the next superstar LT? "Possibly," Indianapolis President Bill Polian said. "I have Clady ahead of Long but I'm not going to argue that one. He's got good feet, he's a big man and he's got nice wingspan (36-inch arms)."
  • 5. JEFF OTAH, Pittsburgh (6-6, 323, 5.28, 1) - "I just think he's a mauler and he has less-than-great feet," Polian said. "That bothers you. Now it might not bother some other people."
  • 6. GOSDER CHERILUS, Boston College (6-6, 317, 5.09, 1-2) - "He's the next in a long line of outstanding Boston College offensive linemen," Polian said. "He's a big mauler. Knock your jock off."
  • 8. CARL NICKS, Nebraska (6-5, 341, 5.22, 2-5) - Described by Polian as "more of a road-grader type,"

Defensive linemen
  • "I love Gholston," said Bill Polian, president of the Indianapolis Colts. "Size, speed, flexibility, bore, natural pass rush, tough as nails. He's an aggressive, kill-you football player. He and Chris Long are just so overwhelming, just such perfect players."
  • What about the four sacks against Wisconsin? What about the three sacks against Michigan, including the only one allowed by Jake Long in `07 and another in which Polian recalled Gholston "picking him a poor kid (Stephen Schillinger, the Wolverines' right tackle) and throwing him at the passer."
  • 1. CHRIS LONG, Virginia (6-3, 269, 4.81, 1) - "He might be a double-digit sack guy his first year as a three-technique in our system," Indianapolis President Bill Polian said. "I said to Tony (Dungy): 'What a shame. This is the guy we've been waiting for.' "
  • 5. LAWRENCE JACKSON, Southern California (6-4, 269, 4.84, 1-2) - "Hard-nosed guy with range and pass-rush ability," Polian said. "Physical guy."
  • 7. CALAIS CAMPBELL, Miami (6-8, 285, 5.01, 2) - "Tall, not real physical, not real fast," Polian said. "Kind of a plodder."
  • 4. MARCUS HARRISON, Arkansas (6-2, 312, 5.06, 2) - "There's a lot to work with," Polian said. "In the end, there's only a few of those guys. You've got to sort of take a shot at them."

Outside Linebackers & Inside Linebackers
  • 1. KEITH RIVERS, Southern California (6-2, 232, 4.58, 1) - "His production doesn't equal his ability," Indianapolis president Bill Polian said. "If it hasn't at the college level under Pete I don't know why it would here."

Defensive backs
  • 2. DOMINIQUE RODGERS-CROMARTIE, Tennessee State (6-1, 182, 4.30, 1) - "He's got a chance to be (great)," said Indianapolis President Bill Polian. "He's got outstanding ability." Polian said "DRC" was as athletic as his cousin, Antonio Cromartie, a second-year CB for San Diego who led the NFL with 10 interceptions in '07.
  • 6. CHARLES GODFREY, Iowa (6-0, 206, 4.41, 2-3) - "He's truly a Cover 2 guy," Polian said. "He will be a little deficient in the one-on-one stuff."

Kick Returners
  • 9. CHRIS JOHNSON, RB East Carolina (5-11, 197, 4.26) - "This guy is a dynamo," Indianapolis President Bill Polian said. "This guy lights it up."
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Old 08-07-2008, 12:07 PM    (permalink
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Default

The possibility of shelling out $10 mil. plus to keep both Kelvin Hayden and Bethea is remote. One of them will go. Antoine Bethea will be in more demand, IMO, because of being a free safety. Kelvin Hayden is by not means a fast or shutdown corner for other systems plus the history of Jason David will make teams understand that Kelvin Hayden is more valuable to us than he could be for other teams. But Bethea could fit into most teams' schemes.

Kelvin Hayden's market value will probably be in the $5-6 mil. range like a Nathan Vasher or Charles Tillman of the Bears who signed up in that range. Bethea's market value will probably be in the $6-7 mil. range unless he does not do as well as the past two years. The Colts may get a free safety from the draft and let Bethea go and keep Kelvin Hayden, that is what my gut tells me.

So, most likely a free safety will be the first pick, Courtney Greene of Rutgers will fit our system good and is a 3 year starter at safety.

BP has never picked a DT or an LB earlier than the third round. Going by that, he will go for an OT to replace Ryan Diem and his contract, maybe Alex Boone from Ohio State, maybe??? But if he wants to go the WR route, he may look at Demetrius Byrd of LSU, a good route runner just like they brought in Earl Doucet this year.

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Old 08-07-2008, 12:25 PM    (permalink
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Why I don't think the Colts will draft a defensive tackle in the first round

It's a crapshoot with those guys, and I think the Colts would sooner draft someone they can invest ten-plus years in and get that production, at positions with much more shelf-life and certainty.

Sure, if you think about the really good Tampa 2 defenses that have a great three-technique tackle - the Bucs with Warren Sapp, the Bears with Tommie Harris, the Vikings with Kev Williams - but the latest those guys were drafted was the 14th overall pick with Harris. Sapp fell to the 12th overall pick back in '95, Williams was taken 9th overall in the same year as Harris. Booger McFarland was the 15th overall pick in '99, Corey Simon the 6th overall pick in 2000. Even recent prospects like Amobi Okoye, Chris Long, Glenn Dorsey, and Sedrick Ellis didn't get out of the Top 10 in recent years. Obviously the Colts haven't drafted that high, nor do they expect to in future years, and that is where the best guys who make it are going.

Really, who was the last franchise defensive tackle to be taken around the 32nd overall pick? Mike Patterson if you're really big on the guy, but otherwise. Ryan Pickett was taken 29th overall in '01, but he's a nose tackle. Chris Hovan was the 25th overall pick out of Boston College the year before, not really a franchise guy or playmaker.

I want an impact three-tech too, but I'm not expecting the Colts to draft one in the first round - and I can't blame them at all, it's too tough a position to project to use a first round pick. So hard to guage how much and for how long those big guys want to endure the punishment and play the game, and most of the bright guys probably leave earlier than later to spare the quality of life thereafter. Thankfully next year's tackle class looks really deep, so the Colts can do the right thing and continue to build up a very strong rotation with mid-round picks.
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Old 08-08-2008, 12:00 PM    (permalink
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Default 2009 Colts Draft

I think they should definately take care of their DT situation in next year's draft. There are plenty of good DTs to take in 2009 such as Jeff Owens or Geno Atkins from Georgia.
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Old 08-08-2008, 12:20 PM    (permalink
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Well, if they're looking at Chris Long as the ideal 3-tech, then I don't know if I want a DT drafted that high. I understand he's got an excellent motor and can get after the QB, but like Brock in 2006 and probably Dawson this year, he'd get pushed back by the opposing OG 5 yards on every run play.
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Old 08-09-2008, 02:35 PM    (permalink
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I agree with the sentiment Geo, and on that note, if it looks like we don't have many holes to fill next year, I'd consider trading up for a premier pass rushing DT in the top half of round 1.
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Old 08-09-2008, 04:55 PM    (permalink
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Or maybe trading 09's 1st for a (better) 1st in '10? You hit it on the head, UKF: there isn't a glaring weakness we can point to right now as first round need.

Quarterback
Not a first round consideration with Peyton Manning on the team, although we're very unsure about Jim Sorgi (all jokes aside). I really like the addition of Quinn Gray right now, he's a talent imo and can maybe make a case for himself despite only joining the team in training camp. An idea I have in my head is Alex Smith, if San Fran should decide to cut bait with him next summer, I think slowly but surely developing him correctly behind Peyton could do wonders for him and for the team. Smith might not win a game on his own, but a talented, executing offense like the Colts could provide him success.

Runningback
Maybe a dynamic utility man like Percy Harvin, assuming he even falls that far? CJ Spiller would be an even better option, but he'd have to reach the pick too. Either would give the Colts speed and more of a jackpot playmaking ability at runningback in the core, also line up at wide receiver on some multiple sets, and be the return man on punts and kickoffs. Joseph Addai will have two years left on his rookie contract after '08, but I think it may be too soon to draft his potential replacement. Rather continue to build up the core with mid/late round picks, if Dom Rhodes isn't re-signed.

Wide Receiver
Honestly I was thinking wide receiver would be the consideration, I like Brian Robiskie at Ohio State and at 6-3/200 he could give Peyton a bigger receiver to work with, also the Heyward-Bey kid at Maryland reportedly has loads of potential with no quarterback to help him fulfill it. That said, even if this is Marvin Harrison's last year with the Colts, the future is looking really bright right now with Roy Hall progressing and Pierre Garcon looking good as a rookie. So I would scratch wide receiver from the first round.

Offensive Line
The Colts' offensive line for the future is set except for right tackle, but Diem isn't an aging veteran. Still, maybe right tackle is the main consideration by default for the first round, if the Colts are willing to take one there and want a guy to replace Ryan Diem by that summer or the next (as they originally planned with Tony Ugoh).

Defensive Line
Defensive end is a premium position, but Raheem Brock is signed through 2010, Robert Mathis is signed through 2011, and Dwight Freeney is signed through 2012. And Marcus Howard looks like a beast. So unless the Colts think an end like Greg Middleton (6-3/272) of Indiana can play enough at both end and tackle to merit a 1st round pick, that might not be it either.

At tackle the loss of Quinn Pitcock worries me, he was the most full-fledged run-stopper on the team and Eric Foster is a great fit but fits a different mold. But again, how willing are the Colts to draft a defensive tackle in the 1st round? Don't fret though, there should be some really good guys in the 2nd round and beyond, players like Peria Jerry of Ole Miss and around half-dozen guys worth considering out of the Big Ten (yay).

Linebacker
I'll believe the Colts under Coach Dungy draft a linebacker in the 1st round when I see it.

Cornerback
Kelvin Hayden becomes a free agent after '08, but the Colts currently have four young talents behind him in Hughes, Jennings, Coe, and Rushing. This isn't like in '05 when the starters were Jason David and Nick Harper, and the Colts thankfully drafted stud Marlin Jackson and the aforementioned Hayden. There'd have to be a really good corner on the board for the Colts to draft him, I suppose.

Safety
Antoine Bethea is a free agent after '09, but considering the Colts inserted Bethea as a rookie free safety, maybe they are willing to do the same with Bethea's successor (assuming Antoine is not re-signed) and thus wait until the 2010 Draft to get him.
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Old 08-11-2008, 07:56 PM    (permalink
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We'll see how the season plays out.

Who knows? Maybe Foster can turn out to be good player.

But as of right now, I agree that DT looks like the biggest concern.
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Old 08-13-2008, 10:33 PM    (permalink
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Scott has posted his first '09 mock, and has the Colts picking in the 1st round ... senior defensive tackle Fili Moala of Southern Cal.

Thoughts?

I'm not a fan of the pick myself.
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Old 08-14-2008, 05:52 PM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by Geo View Post
Scott has posted his first '09 mock, and has the Colts picking in the 1st round ... senior defensive tackle Fili Moala of Southern Cal.

Thoughts?

I'm not a fan of the pick myself.
Well, according to him Moala is:

1) The top DT in this class
2) The 9th best player overall
3) The size of an undertackle

All 3 reasons why, at this point, I can't say I hate the pick.
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Old 08-16-2008, 12:37 PM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by Geo View Post
Scott has posted his first '09 mock, and has the Colts picking in the 1st round ... senior defensive tackle Fili Moala of Southern Cal.

Thoughts?

I'm not a fan of the pick myself.
I'm a big fan of us picking a DT in the first round next year. Although there are some other guys I like a little better than Moala. I would much rather have Sen'Derrick Marks there. I think we can for the most part agree though that DT is our biggest need going into next offseason. I just dont have faith in our other DTs outside of Johnson. And Brock is meant for DE.
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Old 08-16-2008, 03:18 PM    (permalink
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And Brock is meant for DE.
I'd rather have the 2 more years of starting experience and 25 more pounds of bulk Brock brings to the table at UT than the green Dawson there.
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Old 08-16-2008, 05:03 PM    (permalink
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The incorrect numbers on Colts.com aren't gospel, there isn't 10 pounds between Raheem Brock and Keyunta Dawson. Both guys are around 260, if not even close to 250.

(Can I just say that I love how Roy Hall, who is actually 6-2/230, had a growth spurt with the Colts to make him 6-3/240, and then even 6-4 at times this summer? LOL, okay.)

Also, it's quite a hoot how you've drastically changed from having Brock as your least favorite starter and wanting desperately to kick him out the door in a year's time or so, Dam.
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Old 08-16-2008, 05:11 PM    (permalink
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Also, it's quite a hoot how you've drastically changed from having Brock as your least favorite starter and wanting desperately to kick him out the door in a year's time or so, Dam.
I want him out as UT, but not to make way for Keyunta Dawson. For the record, I always felt Brock was best in the role the Colts want to put him in this year, but Brock has gotten to the point that he can at least hold the UT gap, and I don't want to go through another season of watching the growing pains of a DE learning to play UT. I saw enough of it in 2006.
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Old 08-16-2008, 05:17 PM    (permalink
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As for Moala, I'd put the chance of the Colts drafting him at zero percent. It's a pick I expect from Scott, because probably more than any other team, he really does have an outside view of the Colts when it comes to the Draft.

I'd rather not speak in definites because that's rather presumptuous of me, but I'm fairly confident in believing the team won't draft a defensive tackle of that size, with those concerns about motor, character, athleticism, and production relative to talent and team. Not in the 1st round or any round soon after.

There's reasons why between the two major scouting agencies Blesto and National, one gave Moala a 5th round grade and the other didn't even give him a draftable grade. Maybe Scott is confident he'll have a big year, but I wouldn't put that future bust-to-be anywhere near the top of my DT rankings for the Colts. Thanks but no thanks, I'd sooner take my chances hoping the Colts beat the odds and get a second Georgia defensive lineman in a row who won't bust or fizzle out. If not skip both options and go with someone else.

Also, I would want to steer clear of any Auburn prospects because that school has been a complete bust factory other than Jason Campbell and Marcus McNeil. I love to watch the team because they are so fun to watch, superb college players but not near as great pros. Just stop for a moment and think if you can name three, heck two, former Auburn defensive players who are playing well in the pros. Same deal with Oklahoma imo, which plays in an inferior conference at that to make them look even better.

Also, keep note of which junior defensive tackles declare early to cash in, especially after only one good season in their collegiate careers. The Top 15 guys are excuded for financial reasons, but when mid-round guys can't even stick around to be senior leaders, how committed are they going to be to being great pros? Let's just say it doesn't surprise me that the Bengals drafted Pat Sims this past April, I was expecting them to (although in the 2nd round, not the 3rd).

The Colts have an eye towards the Big Ten, and that's good thinking imo. There's a good amount of players there with character, ability, desire, and intelligence. Also a team like Georgia Tech and some other schools who don't skimp on those mentioned factors.
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Old 09-05-2008, 08:46 AM    (permalink
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I just drafted in the forum mock:

1) Ricky Jean-Francois, DT, LSU
2) Louis Murphy, WR, Florida

Any thoughts?
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Old 09-05-2008, 09:53 AM    (permalink
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I'd say WR isn't a need personally, and certainly not in the second round, but that's just me.
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Old 09-05-2008, 11:22 AM    (permalink
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In my opinion, the value was most certainly there with Murphy.

Marvin Harrison isn't exactly a spring chicken either
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Old 09-05-2008, 11:28 AM    (permalink
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Maybe not, but we have Reggie, Gonzalez, Roby, Garcon and Roy Hall behind him. Depth has looked superb in preseason, we had to let Aromashodu go as a result. I'm happy with our WR's without Marvin.
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Old 09-05-2008, 11:46 AM    (permalink
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In my opinion, the value was most certainly there with Murphy.

Marvin Harrison isn't exactly a spring chicken either
I agree, the value is there with Murphy. Not sure if he's a fit for the Colts, but the value/talent is there. Jean-Francois, I'd probably go with a few other tackles instead if I was going for a DT there (plus Geno Atkins is the only junior I would consider).

As for Harrison, if he and his agent don't agree to a big pay-cut after this season, the Colts should cut him imo. Cold but true, he's not worth a 9M base salary at age 37. No thanks.

I've been thinking of doing a ridiculously early 09 Colts mock, if for no other reason than to laugh at it months from now. I'll try to do it.
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Old 09-05-2008, 12:26 PM    (permalink
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I just drafted in the forum mock:

1) Ricky Jean-Francois, DT, LSU
2) Louis Murphy, WR, Florida

Any thoughts?
If Jean-Francois is a UT, that works for me, if that 3-tech spot is addressed well, the Colts defense could become dominant. I have my personal preference of Vance Walker at this point, but it's WAY too early to tell who's worth it, who's not, when players can be had, etc. As for WR, I get the whole Marvin thing, but IMO WR has actually become one of the deepest positions on the team. Really it's impossible to say what the #2 need is at this point, because there are excellent fits for the system everywhere else. It might be time to get a RT of the future, though other than LT and recently C, the Colts haven't invested much in the OL, maybe Kelvin Hayden doesn't come back and a CB is needed (though I don't see how you let your #1 corner go, even in this system). I'm not a fan of investing in a Florida WR, either.
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