Draft Grader: Indianapolis Colts
Draft season is upon us as free agency quiets down and prospect watch goes into overdrive. But the reality for us is that we’re not that involved in the college side of things, but that doesn’t mean we’re not fans of the draft.
For me, though, that means reflecting back on drafts gone by to tell you which teams made the best picks and which ones the worst. So as I do every year, I’m grading every draft pick from 2009 through to 2011 on the PFF rating scale (-2 to +2), factoring in where they were drafted, injuries, and a host of other things.
Up next? Well we’re moving in draft order so it’s the Indianapolis Colts
+2.0: You’ve just found Tom Brady in the 6th round
Not here …
+1.5: Getting much more than you bargained for!
Or here …
+1.0: The scouts nailed it!
You might want to keep on moving down …
+0.5: Never hurts to find a solid contributor
Austin Collie, WR (127th overall pick in 2009): Collie seemed destined for so much more after such a strong start but concussions really derailed everything. Still the +15.2 grade he achieved in his 1,955 snaps is better than most fourth-rounders will deliver.
Pat McAfee, P (222nd overall pick in 2009): If you don’t know my rules, know that I’m a big believer that punters don’t deserve positives unless they turn out to be one of the best in the league. McAfee does because that’s exactly what he has become.
Ricardo Mathews, DT (239th overall pick in 2010): Seventh-rounders do not usually develop into much. They certainly don’t develop into guys who end up featuring on 1,392 snaps without being a liability.
Kavell Conner, LB (241st overall pick in 2010): Another seventh-rounder who contributed more than you might expect. He may have flopped as an every-down player but whether it was early or sub package work, he made a positive impression.
0.0: It could have been worse
Jerraud Powers, CB (92nd overall pick in 2009): Needed to do a little more in his 2,788 career snaps to warrant a positive, though he wasn’t a million miles away. A slightly below-average corner isn’t a terrible return from a third-round pick.
Curtis Painter, QB (201st overall pick in 2009): You shouldn’t expect too much out of a sixth-round quarterback so as bad as Painter was when called upon to start, it’s not a real black mark against him.
Jaimie Thomas, OT (236th overall pick in 2009): Spent most of his first two years on the practice squad and his third year on injured reserve before being released.
Brody Elridge, TE (163rd overall pick in 2010): Drafted to be a blocking tight end, while Elridge would play a healthy 607 snaps he never looked the part.
Anthony Castonzo, OT (22nd overall pick in 2011): Firmly entrenched as a solid starter, but not so good where it matters (in pass protection) that he stands out as a win for the team. That’s the big challenge for him right now to develop that area of his game.
Delone Carter, RB (119th overall pick in 2011): Thrust into a lead role, Carter didn’t do enough to convince the powers that be he was the guy for the long haul.
Chris Rucker, CB (188th overall pick in 2011): Would feature 323 times as a rookie but that wasn’t enough to save him from being cut before the start of year No. 2.
-0.5: That pick was not put to good use
Donald Brown, RB (27th overall pick in 2009): If you draft a back in the first round they better become a starter. Brown, who averaged less than 400 snaps a year in his time in Indy, was never that guy. Sure he got better as a change of pace back this year, but the longevity was never there.
Pat Angerer, LB (63rd overall pick in 2010): Was deemed the man in the middle of the team’s linebacker unit but despite the occasional flash of talent he’s not played well enough to justify the faith placed in him. Injuries haven’t helped but they’ve been secondary to his problems on the field.
Kevin Thomas, CB (95th overall pick in 2010): Third-rounder who would manage just 437 forgettable snaps, earning a -5.9 grade in those snaps.
Jacques McClendon, OG (130th overall pick in 2010): McClendon would never develop into a starter despite the fourth-round pick placed in him and a lack of talent in front of him.
Ray Fisher, CB (247th overall pick in 2010): Seventh-rounder who was released before the start of his first year in the league.
Drake Nevis, DT (87th overall pick in 2011): Big things were hoped for from Nevis but he would repay the team’s investment of a third-round pick in him with just 427 snaps.
-1.0: What a waste!
Fili Moala, DT (56th overall pick in 2009): Despite being afforded playing time over and over again he’s just never developed into anything more than a poor NFL player. Amazingly managed 2,040 snaps that have yielded a -41.8 grade.
Terrance Taylor, DT (136th overall pick in 2009): Not often that a fourth-round pick is waived before the start of their first regular season.
Ben Ijalana, OT (49th overall pick in 2011): Injury definitely played a part here, limiting him to just 37 snaps during his career with the Colts. Not what you want out of a second-round pick.
-1.5: The scouts/ coaches failed, big time!
Jerry Hughes, DE (31st overall pick in 2010): Late first-rounder who would play 873 saps and earn a -15.5 grade. Always seemed an odd fit in Indy and didn’t flourish behind Robert Mathis and Dwight Freeney, or when he was asked to fill in for either of them. While he has had some success in Buffalo that doesn’t undo how bad this pick was for the Colts.
-2.0: You just drafted the love child of JaMarcus Russell and Ryan Leaf!
Not here …
Here are the teams we’ve covered so far:
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