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Players to Watch for 2024 Draft


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While I think we will win to much to get a chance at Marvin Harrison Jr. Another option I like is Troy Franklin WR from the Ducks at 6’ 3” he had great hands and has shown big play ability. I think he would match well on the outside and complement Downs/Pittman. I’m also looking at CB Kalen King because I could also see us going CB. 

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2 hours ago, Zoltan said:

While I think we will win to much to get a chance at Marvin Harrison Jr. Another option I like is Troy Franklin WR from the Ducks at 6’ 3” he had great hands and has shown big play ability. I think he would match well on the outside and complement Downs/Pittman. I’m also looking at CB Kalen King because I could also see us going CB. 

I agree.  We won't be in line for Marvin 2.0.  But we will be in line for a Prime Time player, depending on where we draft.

The players I have my eye on:

1 - Joe Alt, OT, Notre Dame - Raimann, Smith, and to a certain extent Freeland, may be able to hold their own against most defensive ends, but not the likes of Garrett or Donald.  There's a possibility that Alt could.

2 - Malik Nabers, WR, LSU - It's becoming more and more apparent that Pierce isn't the guy.  Nabers has elbowed his way into the conversation of the Next Great Receiver.  I like him better than Egbuka.  He's extremely athletic, and good at creating separation.  He still needs to improve his route tree.

3 - Kool-Aid McKinstry, CB, Alabama - JuJu Brents may be showing he can hold his own, but there really isn't a quality option opposite him.  McKinstry has a reputation of being a Leader on defense, and has a lot of passes defended.  He's also got experience as a punt returner.  My downside on him is that he doesn't have many interceptions to his name.

4 - Dallas Turner, EDGE, Alabama - Quick and highly productive edge rusher from the OLB position.  But can he be a LEO defensive end in this scheme?  There's still improvement to be found in his game, too.

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57 minutes ago, John Hammonds said:

I agree.  We won't be in line for Marvin 2.0.  But we will be in line for a Prime Time player, depending on where we draft.

The players I have my eye on:

1 - Joe Alt, OT, Notre Dame - Raimann, Smith, and to a certain extent Freeland, may be able to hold their own against most defensive ends, but not the likes of Garrett or Donald.  There's a possibility that Alt could.

2 - Malik Nabers, WR, LSU - It's becoming more and more apparent that Pierce isn't the guy.  Nabers has elbowed his way into the conversation of the Next Great Receiver.  I like him better than Egbuka.  He's extremely athletic, and good at creating separation.  He still needs to improve his route tree.

3 - Kool-Aid McKinstry, CB, Alabama - JuJu Brents may be showing he can hold his own, but there really isn't a quality option opposite him.  McKinstry has a reputation of being a Leader on defense, and has a lot of passes defended.  He's also got experience as a punt returner.  My downside on him is that he doesn't have many interceptions to his name.

4 - Dallas Turner, EDGE, Alabama - Quick and highly productive edge rusher from the OLB position.  But can he be a LEO defensive end in this scheme?  There's still improvement to be found in his game, too.

Yeah I was reading up on Nabers as well, outside of Marvin I would like Nabers or Troy Franklin. I really hope we don’t go tackle in the 1st. Their are some great tackles projected but we have serious need at CB and WR, which honestly giving Richardson a WR who can always be open helps with protection more than upgrading one of our tackles in my opinion. I say this because it will decrease time to throw. Otherwise I would like a high draft pick at pass rush or CB. 
 

I agree we may be in position to get a premium player. 

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You would think that the Colts wants to build an offense capable of setting up the run game for both JT and AR.

 

Brock Bowers dubbed a generational player is hard to pass up that can do it all.  Harrison Jr is another player and legacy that would be a solid day one pick.  Malik Nabers had to do extra research after seeing his name mentioned is now highly on my list who also had a 70% blocking grade so far this season just shy of Harrison's.  Rome Odunze biggest knock last year was his ability to make contested catches, but this season is listed as one of the contested catch receivers as of October 5th.  Roman Wilson (Michigan) is another solid receiver made all-America Third Team and has a 68% blocking grade.  For a backup slot receiver got to look hard a Malik Washington (Viriginia).  More curious if Brian Thomas (LSU) would also declare for the NFL draft.  If he does, he could also go on day 1 of the draft.  The only other tight end I would look at is Trey Knox (South Carolina).  Did have high hopes for Brevyn Spann-Ford last year when his 82.5 run-blocking grade lead all Power Five tight ends.  Unfortunately, not many running backs appear to be capable blockers which isn't a top priority, but I do have Jo'Quavious Marks (Mississippi State) who has a very impressive stat line and has a solid 76% grades in both run and pass-blocking.  The only other running back with that is projected late in the draft is Trey Sanders (TCU) that also posting solid 73% scores in both run/pass blocking.

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I mentioned WR Brian Thomas (LSU) if he declares as a potential day 1 player.  Two other juniors in LCB Kris Abrams-Draine (Missouri) want to keep tabs on and OC/RG Jackson Powers-Johnson (Oregon).  Abrams-Draine has first round potential and made midseason all-America First Team.  Powers-Johnson also made First Team and would be imo the best center in this draft class over Sedrick Van Pran (Georgia).  Doubt he would improve his draft stock to first round consideration even if he does stay in college his final year but the potential idea of the Colts taking Powers-Johnson is looking ahead to the future.  Hard to pass up a young OL who is having a career year as he is the only FBS center who has earned 80+ grades in both PB/RB this season.

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The Two guys ve been obsessed 

with for the Colts are Rome Odunze and Keon Coleman. Coleman in particular seems to make a highlight catch every week.

 

On defense I like TJ Tampa, CB from Iowa State and Jared Verse, edge rusher Florida State. Verse came into the season as a top 5 pick but he hasn’t had a lot of production this year, so his stock may fall a bit. I don’t think Paye is the long term answer for us at edge.

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Looking at all the rookies drafted this year only CBs and WRs seem to have a much better draft value and ability to make an immediate impact on their teams.  The rest of the draft class is pretty much meh from LBs to OL even TEs not making much of an impact.  Only a few DL and safeties are standing out.  I realize for some there will be a learning curve before that make contributions or may simply be a bust to career backups.  All assessments are based on midseason PFF grades from last year's draft class.

 

This upcoming draft class appears to be not much different.  Brock Bowers will probably be the exception at TE as the lone standout to make an immediate impact.  Multiple WRs and CBs will make their mark early along with a select few DBs, Edge, and/or defensive lineman. 

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 10/31/2023 at 3:12 AM, OhioColt said:

Looking at all the rookies drafted this year only CBs and WRs seem to have a much better draft value and ability to make an immediate impact on their teams.  The rest of the draft class is pretty much meh from LBs to OL even TEs not making much of an impact.  Only a few DL and safeties are standing out.  I realize for some there will be a learning curve before that make contributions or may simply be a bust to career backups.  All assessments are based on midseason PFF grades from last year's draft class.

 

This upcoming draft class appears to be not much different.  Brock Bowers will probably be the exception at TE as the lone standout to make an immediate impact.  Multiple WRs and CBs will make their mark early along with a select few DBs, Edge, and/or defensive lineman. 

 

 

I said this on IG because there was a mock that had us taking Bowers: As much as most people like Odunze, Nabers, and Coleman, I would be okay if the Colts went with Bowers in round 1, and got another receiver in round 2. Yes we have Jelani Woods but he’s proven nothing yet, and Ballard should always push to be better at positions that aren’t 100% solidified. You’re losing MAC in FA anyways. You can have a depth chart of Bowers, Woods, Ogletree, and Mallory. 2nd round you get a guy like Xavier Legette or A.D. Mitchell. It also makes sense because Richardson seemed to throw to the TE’s more than Minshew.

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The Colts reddit thinks we should trade back... 

 

I vehemently disagree with trading back strategies to be honest. Stay in your lane and get a playmaker. 

 

If we're picking in the top 7-10, I want us to take the best EDGE available. If we're picking 10-15, then we need to get the best WR available. 

 

The team has plenty of average to above average players, which is normal and acceptable. But if we don't want to fall behind the Texans and Jags even more, then we better pick up some true game changers. 

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6 minutes ago, RollerColt said:

If we're picking in the top 7-10, I want us to take the best EDGE available. If we're picking 10-15, then we need to get the best WR available. 

Thats a weird way to approach it.  It could turn out that top 10 favors WR and edge would make more sense later

 

BPA could be a corner back which is also a need

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38 minutes ago, BlackTiger said:

Thats a weird way to approach it.  It could turn out that top 10 favors WR and edge would make more sense later

 

BPA could be a corner back which is also a need

Sorry I should clarify better that right now it’s looking like the top edge rushers will be gone by pick 10. So if we’re in that range I’d like us to take a shot at one of them. 
 

I would agree that a corner is a need. But Ballard already addressed that in the latest draft, and I’m not sure if he would agree us. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 11/16/2023 at 1:09 PM, Cynjin said:

The WR position looks very deep in this draft.  Two receivers that probably will not go first round that I believe will have a good shot at making an impact on a NFL team are Luther Burden, MO and Ladd McConkey, GA.

Apparently Luther Burden is not draft eligible until 2025.  Must be a true soph.

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4 hours ago, Defjamz26 said:

Starting to lower my view on Coleman. Finished the season with 615 passing yards. He had 11 TDs but you’d like to see him get at least 800+ yards.

I am anxious to see what his 40 looks like

 

We desperately need a WR that can get behind the defense….. if he runs a 4.5 forty he may drop

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2 hours ago, MikeCurtis said:

I am anxious to see what his 40 looks like

 

We desperately need a WR that can get behind the defense….. if he runs a 4.5 forty he may drop

If he runs that I would pass. I’d take Odunze or Nabers. Later in the round maybe even AD Mitchell or Legette. We need a combination of speed and route running.

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3 hours ago, Defjamz26 said:

If he runs that I would pass. I’d take Odunze or Nabers. Later in the round maybe even AD Mitchell or Legette. We need a combination of speed and route running.

We've already played our way out of the Marvin 2.0 sweepstakes.  It appears that we're playing out way out of the Nabers sweepstakes, too.  I like winning.  But we just might win so much that we won't be in line for any Rare Air players.

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53 minutes ago, John Hammonds said:

We've already played our way out of the Marvin 2.0 sweepstakes.  It appears that we're playing out way out of the Nabers sweepstakes, too.  I like winning.  But we just might win so much that we won't be in line for any Rare Air players.

The receiver class is deep this year though. We’ll see. You never know how the board will shape out.

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On 10/23/2023 at 3:20 PM, Zoltan said:

While I think we will win to much to get a chance at Marvin Harrison Jr. Another option I like is Troy Franklin WR from the Ducks at 6’ 3” he had great hands and has shown big play ability. I think he would match well on the outside and complement Downs/Pittman. I’m also looking at CB Kalen King because I could also see us going CB. 

I like him as well.

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On 11/28/2023 at 6:49 PM, RollerColt said:

Any chance Odunze from Washington would be available by picks 15-20?

It’s hard to answer. It’s a weird draft in the sense that there aren’t a lot of consensus guys at other positions. Also most of the best players in the draft are WRs this year. Currently the guys I see routinely mocked in the top 15 picks are:

 

-MHJ

-Caleb Williams

-Drake Maye

-Malik Nabers

-Olu F.

-Joe Alt

-Odunze

-Keon Coleman

-Kool Aid

-Jerzhawn Newton

-Jared Verse

-Brock Bowers

 

We may have to wait a little bit more to be able to really tell because as it stands now, I can’t see 15-20 players that teams would take over Odunze.

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  If the right WR is still on the board in the 1st round, That would be my preference.

 

  But I see that Nate Wiggins (Clemson CB) declared. Assuming Bradley and his scheme

  are still around in Indy, I could see Ballard falling in love with him and his traits.

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A few notes with no specific players to mention (yet).

 

1. Flowers (prior to his injury) and Jones (currently) both rates out in the top tier of CB's - as would Brents if he had enough snaps. Plus, I do believe Moore II will be re-signed. So that is three quality boundary corners and an above average nickel........Doubt very seriously that the FO invests in a CB early. A mid-round toolsy guy, sure.

 

2. Offensive tackle is covered with Raimann, Smith and Freeland. They will not invest early in a Tackle (as they never have in the past anyways). Witt coming off of the phantom IR will provide a boost too.

 

3. With Ebukam, Paye, Buck, Stewart, Land, Lewis, Tomi and Dayo all applying pressure and getting after the QB I doubt they invest early here as well. Titus Leo coming off the phantom IR will boost the speed rush depth as Land is starting to show signs of being a decent edge guy right now too.

 

4. Wide receiver - here is the position that can put the offense over the hump. A player of Pittman's quality (or better) would form a quality WR room with Pittman, Downs and Pierce as now the 4th WR. Ballard tends to double down on what he thinks is his biggest weakness in the past (Paye, Dayo), (Jones, Brents, Scott and Rush), (Freeman and Witt), (Franklin and Leonard), (Nelson and Smith), (Fountain, Cain).................so I would focus on a stud 1st round WR and a mid-round WR with "traits".

 

I will come back and add in names that fit that criteria or respond to anyone who questions who I think would fit.

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I’m really starting to like the notion of trading the 1st round pick down to the very end of the 1st (or very early 2nd) and targeting either Troy Franklin or Edgerrin Cooper.  I know Alec Pierce is supposed to fit better once Richardson returns with the long ball, but he’s been too nonproductive and I want to make sure AR has what he needs.  And I think Cooper could be a great playmaker in our D.  Zaire and EJ are only signed for one more year, and it would be good to have the next star LB in place before their contracts come up…

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On 11/30/2023 at 5:33 AM, Archer said:

I’m really starting to like the notion of trading the 1st round pick down to the very end of the 1st (or very early 2nd) and targeting either Troy Franklin or Edgerrin Cooper.  I know Alec Pierce is supposed to fit better once Richardson returns with the long ball, but he’s been too nonproductive and I want to make sure AR has what he needs.  And I think Cooper could be a great playmaker in our D.  Zaire and EJ are only signed for one more year, and it would be good to have the next star LB in place before their contracts come up…


I’ve liked Troy Franklin as well but his inability to have a big game against the Huskies does worry me. As they say Big players make Big plays in Big Games, and Franklin really didn’t do that. 

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unless Ronnie Harrison becomes a starter for us, I'm starting to think LB will be one of our bigger needs behind WR. because we currently really don't have a LB that excels in pass coverage. Zaire and Speed are more run stoppers and even Zaire is more of a liability in pass coverage, so we may have to add a coverage LB to the list of draft prospects to keep an eye on.

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On 12/2/2023 at 4:59 PM, Zoltan said:


I’ve liked Troy Franklin as well but his inability to have a big game against the Huskies does worry me. As they say Big players make Big plays in Big Games, and Franklin really didn’t do that. 

I was surprised at that as well.  I didn’t watch the game - maybe the Huskies game-planned to take Franklin away…

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12 hours ago, Zoltan said:

unless Ronnie Harrison becomes a starter for us, I'm starting to think LB will be one of our bigger needs behind WR. because we currently really don't have a LB that excels in pass coverage. Zaire and Speed are more run stoppers and even Zaire is more of a liability in pass coverage, so we may have to add a coverage LB to the list of draft prospects to keep an eye on.

Jaylan Ford LB texas

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In the past Ballard has always drafted need over BPA. Sure we can debate which is as a bigger need when Paye was drafted but DE was a huge need that draft. This seems this draft Ballard could go BPA. The have needs but I don’t think one position glaringly stands out.  

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11 hours ago, Hawkeyecolt said:

In the past Ballard has always drafted need over BPA. Sure we can debate which is as a bigger need when Paye was drafted but DE was a huge need that draft. This seems this draft Ballard could go BPA. The have needs but I don’t think one position glaringly stands out.  

As it stands today I would put my money on the first pick being an Edge rusher, WR, or FS.

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It feels like if we picking in the 18-22 range of the draft, we should be either looking to trade up or back. I sort of feel like with the roster we have, we should be looking to trade up and start taking shots at elite talent. The roster has decent depth now, especially with a lot of younger players stepping up in positions like WR and CB. But it’s elite players we want to find now.

 

Need a WLB too, but I’d be looking for another Bobby Okereke type in the 3rd round, something like that. Ballard is good at drafting LBs infairness.

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