The Herald Bulletin

Evening Update

Pro Sports

April 19, 2013

Colts keep options open at No. 24

INDIANAPOLIS — Recent history has been kind to teams holding the 24th overall pick in the NFL draft.

Among the stars selected in that spot are running back Steven Jackson (2004, Rams), quarterback Aaron Rodgers (2005, Packers), running back Chris Johnson (2008, Titans) and wide receiver Dez Bryant (2010, Cowboys).

The Indianapolis Colts have their own success story with the pick, landing Iowa tight end Dallas Clark at No. 24 in 2003.

So general manager Ryan Grigson has reason to believe he can add a significant talent when the Colts go on the clock at No. 24 in the first round Thursday at New York’s Radio City Music Hall. But he’s not letting past success breed complacency.

“I’m optimistic (a blue-chip player will be available), but again I always talk to you guys about doomsday scenarios, and we’ll be prepared,” Grigson said during his annual predraft press conference Thursday at the Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center. “If there’s a player there, you hope it’s a blue, but if there’s a sure-fire starter or at least an eventual starter that’s going to strengthen this team and fit the vision of winning championships, then we’ll pluck him, we’ll take him. But if there’s just a guy there and we feel like if we had a two (second-round pick) then we can get this guy, that’s bad business. We aren’t going to do that. We are going to trade back.”

The Colts have been active in the first month of the offseason, signing 11 free agents that include eight potential new starters. That, of course, has changed the outside perspective of the team’s draft needs.

With the loss of outside linebacker Dwight Freeney, Indianapolis could use an upgrade in its pass rush. The offensive line also could get reinforcements on the interior, and no team can have too much talent in the defensive secondary in today’s pass-happy NFL.

Wide receiver is another area that could be addressed, with good value expected to be available late in the first round.

The Pittsburgh Steelers nabbed Stanford guard David DeCastro at No. 24 last year, and the New Orleans Saints chose defensive end Cameron Jordan in that spot in 2011. Both of those positions are likely to be on the Colts’ draft board this year, but Grigson said he won’t become a slave to need — real or perceived.

“If there’s a stud who’s just staring at you and staring holes through you from your board and he’s at a spot you feel strongly going forward in the draft process and that guy can substantially make you better, you have to at least have that discussion,” Grigson said. “We’re willing to have those discussions. At the end of the day, we want the best football players who are going to get us where we want to go, and that’s to win Super Bowls.”

About the only position Grigson ruled out selecting is quarterback.

There aren’t stars at the top of this year’s draft to match quarterbacks Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III last year. But the depth of this year’s class is strong.

Grigson said the draft is deepest in the trenches, and there is expected to be a run on offensive lineman early Thursday. But the lack of clear franchise players has made projecting the draft difficult.

It appears likely Indianapolis could be choosing from talent at wide receiver, cornerback, inside linebacker, safety and all along the defensive line when its pick finally comes up.

Grigson won’t hesitate to pull the trigger if somebody jumps off the board at him, but he’s also determined not to reach. If the value’s not there, look for the Colts to cut their losses and attempt to recoup the second-rounder they lost in last year’s trade with Miami for cornerback Vontae Davis.

“We’ll see how that board starts falling,” Grigson said. “Of course, if there’s not a player sitting there at 24 that the room is not excited and we’re not high-fiving and things like that and we’re not even doing a little fist-bump, we probably shouldn’t take that guy. We’re going to probably look to trade out if there’s a player there we feel is just OK. We want players at that spot, especially in the first round, that are going to substantially help us get to our goal.”

1
Text Only
Pro Sports
  • SPT - HB0725 - Getting healthy - JC - 3 Colts getting healthy as training camp opens Reggie Wayne's arrival Wednesday in an IndyCar driven by two-time Indianapolis 500 pole-sitter Ed Carpenter drew national attention. But the most important news coming out of reporting day for the Indianapolis Colts concerned the wide receiver's health.

    July 23, 2014 3 Photos

  • SPT - HB0725 - Colts arrive - JC - 315a.jpg Colts arrive for training camp

    VIDEO: Reggie Wayne's arrival in a two-seat IndyCar driven by Indianapolis 500 pole-sitter Ed Carpenter highlighted Colts players' arrival at Anderson University Wednesday morning.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0723 - Pagano art Colts' 'monster' now preparing to 'hunt'

    There's a different kind of buzz surrounding the Indianapolis Colts as they prepare to report for training camp today at Anderson University. Expectations have been high inside the locker room since Chuck Pagano arrived in January 2012 and promised shortly thereafter to "Build the Monster." Two 11-win seasons and one playoff victory later, the mantra has changed.

    July 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • SPT - HB0722 - Stuckey art Pacers face uphill battle after signing Stuckey Last week, the Indiana Pacers lost Lance Stephenson. On Monday, they replaced one of the NBA's best young players with shooting guard Rodney Stuckey.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • news_shellysterling.jpg Lawyer says Clippers sale could miss deadline

    A lawyer for the man offering to buy the Los Angeles Clippers for $2 billion says Donald Sterling's stalling tactics are threatening to doom the sale by pushing it past a contractual deadline.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0717 - Colts Camp Colts set to host ESPN during training camp ESPN is coming to Anderson University. "The Worldwide Leader in Sports" will set up shop on campus during Indianapolis Colts training camp on July 28. Reporter Bob Holtzman and analyst Jeff Saturday, who started 188 games at center for the Colts from 1999 through 2011, are scheduled to be on hand.

    July 16, 2014 2 Photos

  • Lebron's Decision Basketball [Duplicate] Pacers face new challenges in Central Division The road to another Eastern Conference final just got a whole lot tougher for the Indiana Pacers.

    July 14, 2014 2 Photos

  • SPT - HB0713 - TY 2 Rising star Hilton excited about future T.Y. Hilton surveyed the Lawrence North High School football field covered with more than 200 campers working in small groups with more than 30 area high school coaches Saturday morning and smiled.

    July 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • LeBrons Decision Cleveland Basketball [Duplicate] James makes Cavs better, now East more wide open A word of caution to anyone anointing the Cleveland Cavaliers as the NBA favorites. Yes, the Cavaliers are going to be good, no doubt. It's impossible not to be with the game's best player. But even LeBron James knows Cleveland has a lot of work to do.

    July 12, 2014 4 Photos

  • SPT - HB0712 - Brazill art Colts waive suspended WR Brazill The Indianapolis Colts announced Friday they have waived wide receiver LaVon Brazill. The news comes just a little more than one week after the 2012 sixth-round draft pick was suspended for a second time for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy.

    July 11, 2014 1 Photo