5 Creative Moves the Indianapolis Colts Can Pull on Draft Day
The possibility that the Indianapolis Colts make a trade on draft day is fairly high. Ryan Grigson has made draft-day trades in each of his first two drafts as a general manager, and has made 11 trades involving draft picks in the last two years.
So, when looking ahead to the NFL draft, trades must be held as a possibility. It would be irresponsible, and boring, if we did not do our due diligence in exploring all of the potential directions the Colts could go with their five draft picks, and that includes trades.
With that in mind, we look at some of the potential trades the Colts could be thinking about as they prepare for the draft. The trades range in probability from "creative" to "probably, definitely going to happen," so open your mind to the possibilities and let's go!
Trade Trent Richardson for a Draft Pick
Yes, this would be one of the more..."creative" trades.
For the Colts to trade Trent Richardson just one year after giving away their first-round pick to get him would be a notable admission of error on their part. In reference to that, it would be very out of a team's character to make such a drastic move. But if the team has realized that he is not going to be the superstar back he was intended to be, it could be beneficial to get some value out of him while his potential is still partially intact.
Trading Richardson would probably net an early to mid-round pick and would allow the Colts to have a bit more ammo for one of the deepest drafts in years. The team could then use one of their picks to boost the team's running back stable with a young, versatile back that could bring some explosiveness to the rotation.
But aside from the fact that the Colts would probably never do this, there's still the question of what team would be willing to pick up Richardson?
Move Up in the 2nd Round for a Top Safety
The Colts desperately need to draft a safety in this year's draft. In fact, it was my No. 1 need for the team earlier this week.
Unfortunately, all of the safeties that could potentially start right away in Indianapolis may be gone by the time the Colts pick. With the increase of passing in the NFL, safeties are valued higher than ever, and the top five safeties in this year's draft could all be picked in the top 50. Yahoo! Sports' Eric Edholm's recent draft has four safeties going before the Colts' pick, for example.
There are 5 safeties in this draft that should start from day 1. Pryor, Clinton-Dix, Ward, Buchanon & Brooks.— Daniel Jeremiah (@MoveTheSticks) April 22, 2014
Two players that the Colts have talked to extensively in predraft activity are Jimmie Ward and Deone Bucannon. Both players would fit well in the Colts' scheme, with Bucannon fitting in at strong safety and Ward being flexible enough to play either spot. But Ward will almost certainly be gone by pick No. 59, and Bucannon may be as well.
If the Colts are serious about locking down one of the top safeties in the league, they'll likely need to swallow the price and move up.
Mortgage the Future, Trade into the 1st Round
Not having a first-round pick is no fun, especially on Thursday night when everybody else is making their most important selections of the year and you're just watching sadly in your Trent Richardson jersey.
But just because Colts will be without a first-rounder when the day begins on Thursday, that doesn't mean they won't have one by the end of the round. The Colts could trade to get back into the first round, picking up some prime talent in a talented draft.
But moving up that high would cost the Colts a pretty penny. The team's first-round pick in 2015 would almost certainly be gone, and it likely would take one additional pick as well, depending on whether the Colts traded up with their second or traded to add a first-rounder. In a deep draft, it's not necessary to move up that far, but if the Colts want to add a blue-chip player, I wouldn't be complaining.
Trade Up for C Marcus Martin
Another possible target in the second for Indianapolis is USC center Marcus Martin, the consensus No. 1 center in this year's draft. Chuck Pagano spent a lot of time with Martin at his pro day back in March, and the need is glaring for the Colts.
Newly-signed Phil Costa unexpectedly retired this week, which drastically changes the team's interior line situation. Rather than having Costa and Khaled Holmes compete for the starting center job, Holmes now is the only viable starter on the roster, but has just 12 snaps of experience, according to Football Outsiders. It would be a risky proposition to have him be the only option going into the season.
While I wasn't a big fan of drafting an offensive lineman early in this draft, the Costa news changes things. Martin is a very distinct possibility, and the Colts may need to trade up a few picks to ensure that he wears blue and white next season.
Package Final 3 Picks to Move Up into the 4th
Another of the more creative trade possibilities, the Colts may want to consider trading their final three picks for a fourth-round selection. The later rounds are traditionally used to fill depth or uncover hidden gems that could potentially develop into stars. Every GM wants to find those diamonds in the rough, and Grigson is no different.
But, Grigson's late-round picks have been a mess thus far. LaVon Brazill is the only sixth or seventh-round pick who hasn't been cut. Plus, the Colts have plenty of developmental talent across the board. Sure, there are areas that could use more infusions of talent, but the team has a lot of young players with high ceilings and low floors. What they could really use is some guaranteed talent.