Colts Need to Find Depth in Middle Rounds of the Draft


Ryan Grigson and Chuck Pagano are entering their fourth draft together in Indianapolis. And while their first ever pick has brought them immense success, some of the Colts’ best work has come on the second and third days of the draft.

Grigson and company will have nine picks in this year’s draft, and still have needs across the board. This year will be critical for the entire staff if they want to bring back the Lombardi Trophy to Indianapolis.

Everybody watches the first round of the NFL Draft, but it is the next six rounds that bring your team depth, and sometimes it is like hitting the lottery. Case in point when the Colts took T.Y. Hilton in the third round in 2012.

The later rounds have brought in several starters including Hilton, Jack Mewhort, Donte Moncrief, Dwayne Allen, Coby Fleener, and even Vick Ballard.

So who can the Colts target this year to add immediate depth? Here are three potential players.

1. T.J. Clemmings, tackle

This pick might not be available here in round two, but Clemmings is one of the best tackle prospects in this year’s class.

While many will shrug off the fact that the Colts do not desperately need help along the offensive line, they still need to improve. Bringing in Todd Herremans helps, but he is not a long-term answer here.

Like last year’s second round pick in Mewhort, Clemmings can move inside to guard to help him adapt to the NFL quicker, allowing the Colts to get him some early playing time.

At 6’5″ and 309 pounds, he has the size to play. At the combine, he finished with 22 reps on the bench, but his most impressive feature might have been his 4.54 20 yard shuttle time, something that is vital for tackles to excel in.

He was a late bloomer to football as he made the switch from basketball to football in high school, so there is some Clemmings still has some flaws in his game. Especially in his technique. Something that will come with more practice at the position.

Above you see Clemmings headed to the second level to take on a linebacker in a game against Duke last season.  While appears as though he gets the job done and seals off the defender, this technique will not work at the next level.

His hips are too high at the point off attack and it causes he to have a stale-mate with the backer. Lineman hear it their entire life ” low man wins” and that is one thing he will need to work on.

But like I said, he is a work in progress with plenty of upside. Case in point is below.

The Colts used this toss sweep a few times late in the season with Mewhort and Anthony Castonzo with some success. Clemmings has fast feet and his first two pull steps are tremendous.

I would love for him to be on the board late in the second, and ideally he would be in the rotation on the right side within the first few weeks of the season if he continues to develop into the player I think he can become.

2. Kurtis Drummond, safety

The Colts need help at safety, and need an immediate starter along side Pro Bowler Mike Adams. While Drummond might not be the answer right away, he has the ideal size at 6’1 208 pounds and plays with a high motor.

His ability to gain ground when the ball in the air is what might intrigue the Colts the most though.

The Colts need a safety who can cover slot guys and take care of the deep end of the field, something they were missing in 2014. Drummond can gain ground quick and attacks the ball at a high point, taking away the deep threat from teams.

There are concerns with open field tackling, but we have seen the worst in that with

LaRon Landry

, and he is nowhere near that level. My biggest concern is he is sometimes easily lured into play-action passes. Case in point below.

Either way, Drummond would be ideal on the third day for the Colts. He has the upside, and could become a solid starter for the Colts as they continue to make strides at becoming the team to beat in the AFC.

3. DeAndre Smelter, wide receiver

An ACL tear cut his season short in 2014, and that has put his 2015 season in jeopardy in the NFL. Luckily for the Colts, they have the depth at wide receiver can be patient.

At 6’2″ and and 226 pounds, Smelter can become a big time red zone threat in the league. The former baseball player has great hands, and even though he played at Georgia Tech in the triple-option offense, the big man still looked great on film.

The Colts brought in Andre Johnson during free agency, and with Duron Carter, Hilton, and Moncrief, he would be buried on the depth chart. That would actually become a blessing in disguise as he would have time to recover from his injury.

Even for his size, Smelter is deceptively quick and can get behind corners quick.

This was a bad move on the corner, but with his size most will be forced to try and jam him at the line of scrimmage to contain him. And he has shown that he can quickly get behind his man.

Getting Smelter would allow the Colts to give Andrew Luck yet another weapon of the future, and allow Moncrief to play the slot and use his speed to force safeties to play deep.

If the Colts are willing to wait on him, he might become one of the best sleepers in this year’s draft.

If you want to see any more film on any of the prospects from above go to