Coming into this season, the fourth round pick from Michigan State had a chance to push for a starting spot. He did that and much more.
We continue looking at the rookies from the past season. Now we look at Khari Willis, a strong safety who the Colts took in the fourth round of this past draft. Coming into the season, he had a chance to challenge Clayton Geathers for the starting strong safety job. He did that and more.
Willis turned out to be the best rookie of the class this season. He finished with 71 tackles and 2 tackles for loss, as well as 1 pass defended. He started the last 6 games that he played in, but did miss two games because of an ankle injury and a concussion.
Because Geathers has had an issue staying healthy in his career, so the Colts signed him to a one-year deal last offseason to prove that he can stay healthy. He could not, and didn’t play effectively when he was. Because of how well Willis played this year, Geathers will be gone.
Willis will now be a starter going into next season. While he played pretty well, he needs to improve his coverage skills. He did not have an interception at all, and only knocked away one pass. Even though that’s not what he is primarily asked to do, he still needs to be able to do it.
Getting a starter out of a fourth round pick is great value anytime you can do it. The Colts have that at strong safety and can now move on to other areas of need in this offseason.