Colts Mock Draft: 5 potential first-round targets for Indianapolis
By Jerry Trotta
3. Ahmad Gardner, CB, Cincinnati
The first seven games of the 2021 season have really emphasized Indy’s need to overhaul their secondary. If we’re being honest, everybody outside Julian Blackmon and Kenny Moore should be considered expendable.
Speaking strictly in terms of next offseason, though, Xavier Rhodes and TJ Carrie will be free agents. It might also be time to make a decision on Rock Ya-Sin, who’s been hurt too often this year to prove himself.
Gardner might not be a CB1 out of the gates, but the Colts shouldn’t need him to be if they play their cards right.
At 6-foot-3 and 200 pounds, Gardner flaunts the exact measurables Ballard looks for in a cornerback. The Cincinnati standout blends that size with tremendous speed that allows him to match up against all kinds of receivers.
Ahmad Gardner could be an impact player right away for the Colts.
Over three years with the Bearcats, Gardner has compiled 75 tackles, 14 pass breakups, and eight interceptions, two of which were returned for touchdowns. His most impressive stat? He hasn’t allowed a touchdown this season.
Simply put, Gardner is a huge reason why Cincinnati is currently the No. 2 overall team in the country. If the young corner is available in the middle or backend of the first round, the Colts better not let him slip through their fingers.