Mock drafts are always tricky, and will undoubtedly face criticism. A lot will change from when this is posted to when the drat starts, free agency will change everything significantly. Some of this may be unpopular, but it is just a mock of what I think could happen. This is my first attempt of the year, but it has been thoughtfully put together.
Cuts: (via overthecap.com)
- Andre Johnson, WR (save 5M)
- Trent Cole, OLB (save 6.125M)
- D'Qwell Jackson, ILB (save 5.75M)
- Bjoern Werner, OLB (save 1.5M)
- Darius Butler, CB (save 2.5M)
Restructure: (via overthcap.com)
- Arthur Jones, DE (save 2.5M)
Re-signed: (number via overthecap.com)
- Jerrell Freeman (4 years/25 million)
- Dwayne Allen (4 years/22 million)
- Adam Vinatieri (2 years/5 million)
- Dwight Lowery (2 years/4 million)
- Jack Doyle (1 year/1.66 million)
- Dan "Boom" Herron (2 year/1.5 million)
- Bruce Irvin, LB (5 years/52 million)
- Jeff Allen, OG (4 years/25 million)
- Patrick Robinson, CB (4 years/ 29 million)
- Chris Givens, WR (2 years/4 million)
- Andrew Luck, QB (6 years/120 million/ 70 million guaranteed)
Cap after signings: (15 Million)
Round 1: Andrew Billings, NT, Baylor
- Some do not understand the importance in drafting a nose tackle this early, but think either protecting Luck or fixing the pass rush is most important. I am of that thinking, but also think that Billings can help with that. Peyton and Brady have been quoted as saying that the pressure that bothers them the most is the pressure right up the middle, and Billings can provide that. Not only can he provide that up the middle, as a dominating NT, but can also help in the pass rush up the edge, by commanding double teams and freeing up the linebackers to rush the passer.
Round 2: Christian Westerman, OG/C, Arizona State
- This may seem like a reach to some, but is a smart draft pick here. Grigson said that he says many guards/centers can project to what they need for lineman. Westerman excels as an athletic offensive guard and can come in and solidify the center spot. According to nfl.com (Lance Zierlein) Westerman can excel in a ZBS, which is what I project Westerman to being (center).
Round 3: William Houston-Carson, FS, William & Mary
- The future strong safety spot has hopefully been filled with Geathers, but the Colts need a long term solution for FS. Carson has been solid against the pass and is a willing tackler. He had a good combine, running a 4.54 forty. He could use a year to learn and luckily the Colts can afford to give him that with having Mike Adams still on the roster. Carson is a willing tackler in the run game and can cover the slot, and is a ball hawk in the secondary.
Round 4: Victor Ochi, OLB, Stoney Brook
- The Colts simply cannot address all of their needs in one free agency, so some may be upset that the Colts did not address OLB until the 4th round. But as stated earlier adding a quality NT in round 1 can help with the pass rush. As for Ochi, he can help set the edge and be a back up to Walden, he has the willingness and the strength to hold up against the run and is not looked at as highly upon, thanks to the lower competition he faced.
Round 5: Matt Judon, OLB, Grand Valley State
- The Colts double up here, given their need for outside linebackers. Judon is a small school standout that Grigson has shown to not be scared of drafting. Grigson has shown that he prefers production versus what school you went to and Judon has it. He dominated his competition with 20 sacks and 23.5 tackles for loss as a senior, and backed it up with a solid combine showing (275 lb, 4.73 40, and a 35.0 inch vertical). Judon is the classic small school project that can turn into major production on the next level.
Round 7: David Morgan, TE, Texas-San Antonio
- With the Colts only signing 1 of 2 of their tight ends, the need to draft one for competition is essential. Morgan is a solid blocking tight end with reliable hands and can be solid competition for the teams 3rd tight end.