The Colts have a tough decision to make with the number three overall pick in the upcoming draft. They seem to be leaning towards taking running back Saquon Barkley. With that in mind, how has it worked out taking backs in the first round?
The Colts seemed to be enamored with Penn State running back Saquon Barkley. He could be the best talent in the draft. With the Colts moving on from Frank Gore, he would be a work-horse in the backfield. But most backs are not taken in the first round. How have the Colts done taking running backs in the first round?
Since moving to Indianapolis in 1983, the Colts have only taken four running backs in the first round. The first one was Marshall Faulk taken number two overall in 1994. He ended up a Hall of Fame enshrinee. In four of the five seasons he played with the Colts, he rushed for over 1,000 yards. He also had a total of 28 rushing touchdowns in his first two years.
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The second running back was drafted to replace Faulk after he was traded to the Rams. That back was Edgerrin James. He was drafted in the first round in 1999. He had five 1,000 yard seasons in the seven years he played for the Colts. James holds the franchise records for rushing yards, rushing touchdowns, most 1,000 yard seasons, yards per game average, and most rushing yards in a single season.
Running back number three is Joseph Addai taken back in 2006. He had less success, only rushing for 1,000 yards twice in the six seasons he played in Indy. The last year of his career, he only rushed for 433 yards and one touchdown.
The final running back taken is Donald Brown back in 2009. He was the least successful of the backs, never rushing for 1,000 yards in his time with the Colts. He played five disappointing seasons in Indy.
The results for the Colts taking a running back in the first round have been a mixed bag. But if they truly believe Barkley is the best talent in the draft, they shouldn’t hesitate to take him.