Thursday, February 14, 2013
CB in the first round for Indy?
By Tim Kavanagh
Within his examination of problems for the four AFC South teams as part of the "Plugging the Holes" series, Tom Gower of Football Outsiders had this to say about the Indianapolis Colts' secondary:
"The first thing the Colts need is a starting cornerback opposite Vontae Davis. Cassius Vaughn was one of the worst starters in the NFL, and Colts opponents knew it, targeting him more than any other corner in the league. (Vaughn had a success rate of 48 percent, according to Football Outsiders game charting, which ranked him 69th out of 89 corners with at least 35 charted targets.) If free agent Darius Butler, who played well on the too-infrequent occasions he was healthy, is not retained, Indianapolis needs to replace him, as well."
So yeah, they need some help at that position. As we know, there are two ways to accomplish this: acquiring veterans through free agency or trades, and the draft. There are some interesting CBs whose contracts are up this offseason -- including Aqib Talib, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Brent Grimes and Cary Williams, the latter of whom played for Chuck Pagano during their time in Baltimore -- but they could also use the No. 24 overall pick on someone at the position, or attempt to secure an under-the-radar prospect in the third round or after. (Remember, the Colts sent their second-rounder to Miami in the Davis trade).
Our resident NFL Draft gurus -- Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay -- don't always agree on everything, but they came up with the exact same player for the Colts at No. 24 in their most recent mocks, Mississippi St. CB Johnthan Banks:
Mel Kiper, Jr.Mock Draft V2.0
"The Colts are in a range where they might get some phone calls for potential trades. I can imagine teams drafting early in the second round moving here to get a QB in a decent value range. If Indy stays, the Colts can go a few different ways. If they really like an O-lineman here, I think that's a smart play because they simply have to do more to protect the future of the franchise. But we know the defense could use help in a few places, and the chance to take the second-best CB in the draft is something that could make sense here. Banks can start early and help this defense."
Todd McShayMock Draft V2.0
"The defensive front seven and the offensive line will certainly be in play here, but the Colts need to find some difference makers in the secondary. Banks has good size, is an instinctive cover corner, and shows toughness and outstanding ball skills. He notched 16 career picks at Mississippi State, including three he returned for scores."