2023 NFL Draft grades: Indianapolis Colts' class much more than just Anthony Richardson
Overall Indianapolis Colts grade: A
The Colts seem to have gotten back on the right track with this draft, or at least setting themselves up to be productive in future years. Richardson has real deal franchise quarterback potential and they added to their wide receivers room by taking the polished Josh Downs out of North Carolina. The Colts are not a team that’s totally bereft of talent, so this draft class may help them get back to the top of the division and competing with the Jaguars. They also took two defenders with massive upside in Kansas State cornerback Julius Brents and Northwestern defensive lineman Adetomiwa Adebawore. This is a draft that helps today with some big-time athletes who can grow with the team in the coming seasons. The Colts can surprise people if some of their offensive veterans start playing good football again.
Favorite pick: Anthony Richardson, QB, Florida (4th overall)
Scared money don’t make none! The Colts absolutely swung for the fences here with Richardson and he may wind up proving them right sooner rather than later. His lack of passing skills are greatly overstated and he’ll be a weapon on the ground from Day 1. He’s a mega-talent and will even make life easier for superstar running Jonathan Taylor, who had a down season in 2022. Richardson might need time to put up monster passing numbers, but his style of passing is suited better for the NFL than the offense (and supporting cast) he played in at Florida. Look past the completion percentage — Richardson is a stud quarterback prospect. There’s an easy path for early production for him and head coach Shane Steichen has experience building NFL offenses for mobile quarterbacks.
Least favorite pick: Blake Freeland, OT, BYU (106th overall)
It’s tough to hate on a developmental tackle in the fourth round, but Freeland is pretty raw. That doesn’t really matter. This is the least favorite pick of a draft class that had a lot of great picks.
Full Colts draft
Florida QB Anthony Richardson (R1, 4th overall)
Kansas State DB Julius Brents (R2, 44th)
North Carolina WR Josh Downs (R3, 79th)
BYU OT Blake Freeland (R4, 106th)
Northwestern DT Adetomiwa Adebawore (R4, 110th)
South Carolina CB Darius Rush (R5, 138th)
Cal S Daniel Scott (R5, 158th)
Miami TE Will Mallory (R5, 162nd)
Northwestern RB Evan Hull (R5, 176th)
Wagner edge Titus Leo (R6, 211th)
Texas A&M CB Jaylon Jones (R7, 221st)
Northern Michigan OT Jake Witt (R7, 236th)