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NCF's Second Look at the 2022 Draft (By Need)

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I did this exercise a few months ago,  post '21 draft.    And I'm sure I'll do it again after the season is over.    And then again in April before the '22 draft.


But with the roster and PS now done,  (with some minor changes to come)   here's my best guess.


1.    I think of Dayo as our '22 first round pick.


2.    Cornerback       Note:   I expect to trade a 4 and perhaps a late pick as well so we can move up from roughly the mid-50's to somewhere in the 40's.

3.    Tight End.          I'm expecting Jack to retire after this year, next year at the latest.    Frank loves the position.  


4.    Wide Receiver     I'm expecting TYH to retire after this year.    Or at least,  move on from the Colts.    Unless, of course,  he has an unexpectedly great 21 season.


5.    Running back      Next year,   we should expect to Mack moving on.    And likely Wilkins too.


6.   Safety                   


7.   Linebacker           We did well with Adams and Franklin in the 7th round before.   Perhaps we can do it again?



Note:   I know there are comp picks I have not accounted for.     I'll address them in some other version of this down the road.


Comments always welcome....





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Well done NCF putting together this exercise.  I have also been looking ahead to the future after this season seeing what upcoming FAs and top draft picks might be available.


1.       Do think the depth of our edge players are a solid group.  Still a lot to like a look forward to as the season progresses.  Obviously, some questions about keeping a few going into next off-season.  The following are upcoming FA’s that we might want to consider.

a)       Edge Rasheem Green (Seahawks)

b)      Edge Jacob Martin (Texans)

c)       Edge Carl Granderson (Saints)

d)      Edge Derek Barnett (Eagles)

e)      Edge Josh Sweat (Eagles)


If we do keep our first round pick I do like Kayvon Thibodeaux, Oregon.  Drake Jackson, USC, Myjai Sanders, Cincinnati, George Karlaftis III, Purdue and Aidan Hutchinson, Michigan.  In the end we should be well established and expect to resign our edge players and focus elsewhere in the draft.


2.       The upcoming Cornerback class is supposed to be deep this year.  At some point we will need to replace both Rhodes and Carrie.  RYS I feel might be already on the roster bubble but a position change to safety might be better suited for him.  Come draft day I would love for the Colts to select one of these players, Derek Stingley JR (LSU), RCB Kaiir Elam (Florida), or RCB Ahmad Gardner (Cincinnati). 

3.       Tight End.  Also expect Doyle to retire and for the Colts to realistically add a veteran TE in FA.  Have already seen in 2022 NFL mock draft the Colts taking Jalen Wydermyer (Texas A&M).

4.       Wide Receiver.  Unfortunately, this is a group that I expect to have a major turnover after this season.  Hilton should retire and if Campbell doesn’t impress this season wouldn’t be shocked to see him cut or traded.  Dulin might not do enough to stick around either.  Think going forward we focus on FA and the draft to replenish our WR corps focusing on Pascal, Pittman and Strachan as key starters.  Courtland Sutton would be a dream addition and has the height Wentz covets as a receiver. 

5.       Running backs.  This is one group am happy with and don’t expect much turnover except to replace Wilkins.  Mack am expecting to rebound from his injury and create a dynamic 1-2 punch with Taylor as originally scripted.  Hines is too good to let walk and expect him to be paid like Eckler.

6.       Safety obviously would want Kyle Hamilton from ND but we would have to be picking within the top 10.  Blackmon has played well but always room to upgrade.  Below are some upcoming FA’s targets but likelihood of adding one is very low am thinking.

a)       FS Marcus Williams (Saints)

b)      FS Jordan Whitehead (TB Bucs)

c)       FS Justin Reid (Texans)

d)      FS Tracy Walker (Lions)

7.       Linebackers.  Outside of Leonard do I feel comfortable and only time will tell after this season what we truly have I fear going into next off-season/draft.  Nate Landman (Colorado) was highly touted last year I was looking forward to, but he opted to return to college this season would be a strong consideration for the Colts in the 2022 draft if Okereke struggles.  Devin Lloyd (Utah) is another draftee to keep an eye on at MLB.  As for upcoming FA’s, below is my short list:

a)       LB Kyzir White (Chargers) 3-4 RILB

b)      LB Kenny Young (Rams) 3-4 LILB

c)       LB Krys Barnes (Packers) 3-4- RILB

d)      SLB Uchenna Nwosu (Chargers)


I think the Colts have a very good established group of players already on the roster heading into next off-season.  Position-wise DB’s and LBs might be our top draft priorities with the exception I fear will be depth at DT behind Stewart and Buckner that you didn’t originally mention.  Would be surprised to see a complete reboot along our DT line and see Woods, Stallworth, Williams, and Windsor get replaced.  DT Jermayne Lole from Arizona State is a great 3-tech player to watch for this year along with Travis Jones (UConn), but we really don’t need to replace Buckner as a starter.  Both Lole and Jones should be First Rounders.  Would say keep an eye on Tyler Davis of Clemson would be a solid Colts target to add competition with Grover Stewart.  Of course, I wouldn’t mind adding John Franklin-Myers (NYJ) in FA but do realize the Jets will have plenty of cap space to resign him but as we all know the Jets sometimes let great players go.  Something to consider about Stewart is he will be 29 years old and might need to add some youth not to mention the way Stewart’s contract is the Colts could recovery a good amount of cap space trading or releasing Stewart for 2022 and 2023.


At this point in time I would have to say come draft day my top 3 First Round targets would have to be RCB Ahmad Gardner (Cincinnati) to replace Rhodes, RDT 1-tech Tyler Davis of Clemson to eventually replace Stewart, and MLB Nate Landman (Colorado) at long-shot odds given the Colts draft history.

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My regular objection to drafting for need aside, if we go by the theme of the thread this is my list:


1. no pick, Wentz 

2. LT - Fisher is only tied to 1 year contract. If he's good he likely signs elsewhere for a lot of money. If he's bad - we need a LT anyways.

3. CB - Rhodes only tied to 1 year contract. Lots of youth, not very much certainty. We need more here. 

4. TE... not sure what we have in Granson... Doyle is getting old and as you said might retire. MAC's contract expires too

5. WR... depends on how the youth does this year... this might be much higher... 

6. RG - Glow's contract is up. We might need to replace him... or if we have his replacement on the roster, we need to replace the backup spot that will open up. 

7. RB - the pass-catching variety in case we cannot keep Hines. 

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In my eyes Indy will have 3 main needs going into 2022.


CB - Rhodes is getting older, and Moore is best suited for the slot. This team desperately needs longterm outside corners. 


LT - This all depends on Eric Fisher obviously, but this is such a vital position to maximize Wentz's production.


WR - Hilton could retire after the season, and a longterm piece is needed opposite MPJ. 

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Finally had some free time to fully digest the upcoming 2022 NFL draft class and must say was very surprised by how many TE’s will be available in the draft this year.  Am not expecting the Colts to be very active in FA after looking at our projected cap space next year after resigning majority of our own FAs.  Sadly, we will be on the very bottom available cap space to spend by my bookkeeping accounts and I hadn’t even taken into consideration extending Nelson.  With pretty much our whole DL up for contract renewals next off-season along with our LBs would be shocked if we draft all defensive players.


I think a lot of the cap space might get tied up just on our OL depending on what we decide on LT’s Fisher and Tevi.  Reed is another decent player who could be making more and not many options to replace Glowinski in FA next year.  One thing this draft class seems to lack is a solid RG who could come in Day 1 and start. 


Offensive-wise I think we have a very solid foundation with high expectations that Wentz is the man and our backup QBs are set.  Running backs are also well established unless Mack suffers another major setback and we need to find a replacement, in Round 3 might have RB Zonovan Knight (NC St) and RB Kyren Williams (ND) available.  Not expecting the Colts to be aggressive in the draft for wide receivers and do believe we should be set with the core receivers already on the roster.  Right now, just looking at our depth chart am a little worried about our safeties.  Odum is more of our ace ST and I don’t see any backup to Blackmon.  Back to the 2022 NFL draft board and some of the players of interest as follows:


Round 1 - BPA

RDT Tyler Davis (Clemson) – Only get 50-60% of snap count and be key ST taking over for Stewart

CB Ahmad Gardner (Cincy) - Man Coverage with long arms

Edge Myjai Sanders (Cincy) – With AQM, Rochell, Turay, and Lewis all upcoming FA’s and Dayo injured


Round 2

MLB Owen Pappoe (Auburn)

TE Jalen Wydermyer (Texas A&M)

TE Isaiah Likely (Coastal Carolina)


Round 3 TE, RB, CB

CB D’Jordan Strong (Coastal Carolina) - best in zone coverage

TE Cole Turner (Nevada)

TE Jake Ferguson (Wisconsin)

RB Zonovan Knight (NC St)

RB Kyren Williams (ND)


Round 4 – LB or S

SLB Merlin Robertson (Arizona St)

FS Leon O’Neal JR. (Texas A&M)

SS Kendarin Ray (Tulsa)

MLB Ventrell Miller (Florida)

MLB Ellis Brooks (PSU)


Round 5 - CB, SLB, WR

CB Coby Bryant (Cincy) – Zone Coverage specialist

CB Derrick Canteen JR (Georgia Southern)

CB Tariq Castro-Fields (Penn St)

SLB Amari Gainer (Florida St)
SLB Mike Rose (Iowa St)

SLB Noah Taylor (Virginia)

WR Ty Fryfogle (Indiana)

WR Khalil Shakir (Boise St)

WR Ainias Smith (Texas A&M)

WR Sam Pinckney (Georgia St)


Rounds 7-7 – DL

NT Dion Novil (North Texas)

RDT Dante Stills (West Virginia)

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Howdy NCF!


Your revisit of 2022 made me go back and look at the players and stuff a little bit, too.  I still agree with you:  CB is going to be our #1 position of need, and will still be hard to draft for, depending on whether or not we have a 1st round or a 2nd round pick available to us.  I still have my eye on CB's Ahmad Gardner (Cincinnati) and Trent McDuffie (Washington).

I've got two new thoughts, though.

First, I'm getting more certain that we're gonna let Glowinski go next year, along with Hilton, Mack, Rhodes, and Doyle.  That means we either have his replacement on the roster now, in Danny Pinter or Will Fries, or we'll be drafting one.  Nobody yet has caught my eye in the 2022 draft class for that position, but I'm starting to look.

Second, I've been looking more and more at the mammoth inside DT Jordan Davis from Georgia.  I know, I know, we have Grover Stewart, and we paid him handsomely to be here.  But you know how Ballard likes to "create competition at every position".  And this guy is making a name for himself as a difference maker.  I can't help but keep going back and taking a look.


Anyway, have a great labor day weekend!

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Strictly in terms of drafting:


1: LT - we've forgone this position every draft, we really need to find a long term option. Even if Fisher comes back and plays well. Draft a high potential guy we can use as a swing tackle for the first couple years.


2: QB - Could be #1 depending on what Wentz does this year. I don't think our staff is overly "thrilled" with Eason or Ehlinger to be anything more than a quality backup.


3: CB - We have some quality here, but we really do need that Alpha lockdown #1 guy that can travel and completely take a guy out of the game. I think thats the reason we play so much zone, is a lack of trust with guys like Ya Sin and Carrie etc. Makes me miss the Vontae Davis days.


4: TE - Like our group now, but the rumors have been out since last season that this might be Jacks last year. I'm lower than most on here about Cox, and the jury is still out on Granson. Looks like a good TE class too so good time to add a piece.

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