The Indianapolis Colts could go in one of several different directions with the No. 21 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, especially now that the Carson Wentz trade has crossed quarterback off their list of potential targets.
The secondary could be an area that Chris Ballard hits early and often in this draft, as the likely departures of Malik Hooker and Xavier Rhodes will leave Indianapolis very vulnerable at that spot unless replacements are added as soon as possible.
Unfortunately, this draft isn’t the best with regard to secondary talent, as Caleb Farley, Patrick Surtain II, Jaycee Horn, and Trevon Moehrig make up a top-four that likely will stand head and shoulders over the rest of the DBs in this class.
If the Colts want to add secondary talent despite the fact that the top four defensive backs will all likely be off the board by the time pick No. 21 comes around, Ballard’s best course of action would be to trade down in the draft, get back some of the picks he lost in the Wentz deal, and try to conduct a DB-heavy draft.
The Indianapolis Colts could draft one of these 3 defensive backs.
No. 3: Hamsah Nasirildeen, SAF, Florida State
Calling Nasirildeen a safety is doing him an injustice, as the 6-4, 220 pound Swiss Army knife could be equally suiting to playing linebacker in the pros. While his size says linebacker, his speed and ability to cover ground in zone coverage scream safety.
Nasirildeen only played
during his final season with the Seminoles, and he does look like a textbook “tweener” that might struggle to stick at safety or linebacker, but Matt Eberflus should be able to work well with him. With his stock slipping a tad, Indy could get him later in the draft than anticipated.
How could Hamsah Nasirildeen help the Colts?
The success of Jeremy Chinn, who competed with Chase Young for Defensive Rookie of the Year with the Carolina Panthers, could give Indianapolis a blueprint on how to use him. In obvious running situations, he’s a sideline-to-sideline linebacker. On passing downs, he’s an extra DB.
Nasirildeen might not be the most refined player, but he is someone that simply makes plays whenever he is on the field. In a league that is moving more towards that positionless style of defense, Nasirildeen could get tons of snaps as a rookie.