Indianapolis Colts 2021 NFL Mock Draft Roundup 8.0
Throughout the year and leading up to the 2021 NFL draft, we will update our Indianapolis Colts Mock Draft Roundup showing picks for the Indianapolis Colts from several prominent sites and draft analysts.
With the top four offensive tackles -- five if you include Vera-Tucker -- off the board, the Colts address one of their other top needs here with Rousseau. Perhaps the Colts will bring back Justin Houston, who remains a free agent, but as productive as he's been (19 sacks over two seasons in Indy), he is also 32 years old.
Opting out of the 2020 season, Rousseau ranked second in college football in sacks in 2019. The majority of that production came while rushing from the interior, but Rousseau has unreal length and is a converted high school WR/S that is still learning the position.
The Colts lost Denico Autry to the division-rival Titans, and Justin Houston remains unsigned. That means DeForest Buckner is the only player with at least five sacks in 2020 set to return for 2021. Indy's defensive strength is a big part of its identity, and Paye has explosive speed off the edge. The production hasn't caught up to the ability just yet, but his ceiling is very high. Alternatively, the Colts could target a defensive back or maybe reach a little bit for a receiver.
Anthony Castonzo's retirement opened up a big hole at left tackle, and the Colts couldn't secure star Trent Williams in free agency to fill it. Fortunately for Indianapolis, this draft is deep at the position. Darrisaw was PFF's second-highest-graded tackle in the Power Five in 2020.
The Colts did make a few more moves this offseason which not only included re-signing T.Y. Hilton but also addressed their immediate left tackle need by signing Sam Tevi from the Chargers to a one-year deal. I still think the Colts go offensive tackle here and invest for the future since Carson Wentz was the most sacked QB in the league last year as he has a propensity to hold onto the ball too long so trying to give him the best protection possible will be paramount both now and long term.
I expected the Colts to be aggressive seeking their next quarterback in the trade market and they didn't disappoint. The next biggest priority is to continue building their pass rush. Ojulari was a semifinalist for the Chuck Bednarik Award (the nation's top defensive player) with 8.5 sacks, 12.5 tackles for loss, four forced fumbles and 25 quarterback hurries. He's only scratching the surface of his talent.
The Colts didn't make many waves in free agency, as they were content to re-up running back Marlon Mack and cornerback Xavier Rhodes. But they could make a big splash in the draft by selecting Oweh. The Penn State star didn't put up big numbers in 2020, but brings sky-high potential as both a run stopper and a pass rusher. With elite athleticism and prototypical size, he could be an immediate difference-maker in Indianapolis.
After securing their quarterback situation by trading for Carson Wentz, the Colts could find another cornerback to pair with Xavier Rhodes. Eric Stokes is a long press corner with the speed to stay in lockstep with any receiver.