Originally written April 08, 2012 on The Sports Headquarters:
We have been over why the Indianapolis Colts have the first pick in this year’s draft, and it is not just because Peyton Manning was hurt.  Check that out here: Indianapolis Colts Draft Review Now the real question, how do they get back on top, and make sure they never have something like this year happen again? Here is my Indianapolis Colts 2012 Mock Draft, and you already know who pick number one is going to be. Note: The NFL Comparison is a best case scenario, this isn’t me saying that any of these players will have the career of the men I compare them too, so don’t get to upset people. Team Needs: QB, WR, All offensive linemen, CB, DT, and TE Round 1 Pick 1) Andrew Luck, QB Stanford If you don’t know about Luck I don’t know if I can help you, but here is what I said about him earlier this year: Strengths: One of the best things about Luck is the poise he shows at any time, no matter what is happening in the game.  He never seems overwhelmed or like the moment is too big for him, and that is something that a franchise QB has to have.  That poise is also shown on the field, as he has phenomenal footwork in the pocket, but enough mobility to move around, and evade the rush when things do break down. His biggest asset is simply his football acumen, and ability to read, diagnose and breakdown defenses and use that to make quick reads and get the ball out with his deadly accuracy.  He has good arm strength and can make all the throws that are needed at the NFL level. Weaknesses: If there is one thing wrong with Luck physically it is that he lacks an elite level power arm, you know like an Elway or Favre.  Of course guys like Manning, Brady, Warner and Brees haven’t exactly been known for their fastballs in the high 90’s, so that isn’t a prerequisite for greatness. The bigger concern I have is if Luck can live up to the expectations.  He has done so much in college, with no discernible talent at WR on a week to week basis, which if he gets in a situation with weapons and doesn’t put up huge numbers people will start chirping.  Can he handle the pressure?  Can he walk onto the field and become a top 12 QB in the league, because guess what anything less and people will start throwing that B word around, he won’t have any time to learn, because so much praise and expectations of hope will come if he is playing next year. NFL Comparison: Peyton Manning Round 2 Pick 2) Mohamed Sanu, WR Rutgers The more mocks your read, the more you aren’t seeing Coby Fleener in this pick anymore, and it is simply because he won’t be there. The Colts will want to compliment the choice of Andrew Luck with some weapons, maybe they look at an offensive lineman, but I think those will be available in a later round. Sanu is a physical specimen, with a big body, long arms, and big, strong hands that allows him to pluck the ball out of the air and away from his body.  He isn’t a burner by any means, but he won’t be just a possession receiver either, running routes with effectiveness at every level on the field. He isn’t a finished product yet, but there aren’t many WRs better to learn from and compete with on a day in and day out basis than Reggie Wayne. Sanu is best in space, with the ball in his hands, as he runs around and through tacklers and can make people miss on a consistent basis. NFL Comparison: Anquan Boldin Other Options: Alshon Jeffery, WR South Carolina
Reuben Randle, WR LSU
Mike Adams, OT Ohio ST Round 3 Pick 1) Alameda Ta’amu, DT Washington May not even be here, but he is falling down draft boards, and the Colts are switching over to the 34 defense, so it could be a match made in heaven. Ta’amu is a massive, strong man, who while big, doesn’t look overly soft, and backs up that size with great get off on the snap of the ball. Is a one gap player who engages well and gets under his blockers pad level, but can’t redirect quickly and doesn’t have elite closing speed, even though he won’t stop til he gets there. NFL Comparison: Jamaal Williams Other Options: Mitchell Schwartz, OT California
Josh Chapman, NT Alabama
Ben Jones, C Georgia Round 4 Pick 2) Orson Charles, TE Georgia The Colts need to get Andrew Luck some help, and Charles could be a good TE in this league, but most importantly they need to replace both Dallas Clark and Jacob Tamme. Charles has been in trouble with the law in the off season, and it has probably cost him at least one round, and maybe even two rounds of pay.  He is a big WR who just happens to play TE.  Great quickness off the line and enough speed down field to run away from defenders, but isn’t the best of route runners and isn’t the most physical of blockers. He is however a supremely gifted athlete that can create mismatches all over the field and become a viable weapon… If he can keep his head on straight. NFL Comparison: Aaron Hernandez Other Options: Michael Egnew, TE Missouri
Leonard Johnson, CB Iowa St
Coryell Judie, CB Texas A&M Round 5 Pick 1) Justin Bethel, CB Presbyterian Good build, with long arms and fluid hips in coverage, but comes out of his stance when he breaks on the ball. He is worth a look in the 5th round because of his frame and speed. Other Options: Coty Sensabaugh, CB Clemson
Kyle Wilber, OLB Wake Forest
Brandon Lindsey, OLB Pittsburgh Pick 35) Mike Brewster, C OSU Tall, rangy center that is consistent with his placement in snaps gets his hands up quickly and has good foot placement as he is making his moves. Lacks the overpowering strength to bully people in the run game, and can be overwhelmed at times in the passing game. Could be a starter in the league eventually, but will be a finesse center more than a bruiser. Other Options: Philip Blake, C Baylor
Levy Adcock, LT Oklahoma St
Ryan Steed, CB Furman Round 6 Pick 37) Lennon Creer, RB Louisiana Tech Strong runner who transferred from Tennessee to Tech and never truly flourished despite some very good abilities. Has a great burst and gets to the hole quickly, where he makes strong cuts and gets moving.  Good open field speed and ok vision. Can get happy feet and dance a little too much, and doesn’t always let the play develop and can look to bounce it outside a little too fast. Other Options: Drake Dunsmore, TE Northwestern
Omar Bolden, CB ASU
Chris Owusu, WR Stanford Round 7 Pick 1) Trevor Guyton, DE California Strong five technique in Cal’s 34 defense that can play any of the line positions.  More of a brute strength guy than a football player as he relies on his strength far too often and loses the ball and gets himself out of position needs to learn to play under control and find the ball and pursue it. Other Options: Dominique Hamilton, DE Missouri
Garth Gerhart, C ASU Pick 17) Asa Jackson, CB Cal Poly Pick 46) Travian Robertson, DE South Carolina                      

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