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INDIANAPOLIS – Exhale, draft week is here.

Intrigue will continue to rise before the fun gets started on Thursday night.

For the Colts, they currently hold the No. 21 overall pick in Round 1, with reasons to trade back certainly there.

Although there’s definitely some benefits to staying at No. 21 and making a first-round selection for the first time since 2018.

In our latest Mock Draft look, the pundits have narrowed it down to the two biggest needs for the Colts.

Here is our fifth Mock Draft look for 2021:

ESPN’s Mel Kiper: Pick No. 21: DE-Jaelan Phillips (Miami)

Kiper’s Analysis: I can’t believe this is the first edge rusher off the board. Phillips has a history of injuries — he medically retired from football when he was at UCLA — but there’s no denying his pass-rush traits. And that’s the Colts’ biggest need.

 

NFL.com’s Daniel Jeremiah: Pick No. 21: OT-Christian Darrisaw (Virginia Tech)

Jeremiah’s Analysis: Indianapolis has a hole at left tackle in the wake of Anthony Castonzo’s retirement. Darrisaw can slide right in and be a starter at the position.

 

CBS Sports’ Ryan Wilson: Pick No. 21: OT-Teven Jenkins (Oklahoma State)

Wilson’s Analysis: Anthony Castonzo announced his retirement and Jenkins, who plays with an edge, is athletic, has great feet, and moves well in space. He can also man the left or right tackle positions.

 

Pro Football Focus’ Steve Palazzolo: Pick No. 21: DE-Jayson Oweh (Penn State)

Palazzolo’s Analysis: It’d be great to give the Colts a tackle in the first round, but I don’t love the value at this point in the draft. Oweh adds the athleticism that the Colts covet, and he steps in at a position of need along the defensive front. Oweh took huge strides in the run game, and his legendary pro day featured a 4.38 40-yard dash. He also ranked in the 95th percentile or better in the vertical jump, broad jump, three-cone and short shuttle. Don’t worry about Oweh’s zero-sack 2020 season; his 86.2 pass-rush grade over the last two years is a better indicator of future pass-rush performance

 

The Athletic’s Dane Brugler: Pick No. 21 DE-Jaelan Phillips (Miami)

Brugler’s Analysis: Phillips is a tough evaluation due to his medical history, but his talent is worthy of early first-round consideration. If the Colts’ medical staff gives general manager Chris Ballard two thumbs up, Phillips could be a steal for a team in need of more juice rushing the passer.

 

MOCK DRAFT TOTALS

In each installment of the mock draft looks we will total up all the positions pundits have pegged for the Colts throughout the draft process:

1st Mock Draft Look (January 13th)

2nd Mock Draft Look (February 3rd)

3rd Mock Draft Look (March 4th)

4th Mock Draft Look (March 30th)

Totals:  

DE-Jaelan Phillips (4)

DE-Gregory Rousseau (4)

OT-Christian Darrisaw (2)

WR-Rashod Bateman (2)

DE-Jayson Oweh (1)

OT-Teven Jenkins (1)

CB-Tyson Campbell (1)

DE-Kwity Payne (1)

OT-Samuel Cosmi (1)

WR-Kadarius Toney (1)

CB-Jaycee Horn (1)

OT-Liam Eichenberg (1)

OT-Aljiah Vera-Tucker (1)

CB-Greg Newsome (1)

QB-Mac Jones (1)

QB-Kyle Trask (1)

 

Bowen’s Analysis: Let’s start with Phillips, who is one of the most fascinating prospects in some time. As you see in the descriptions above, this choice could squarely fall on the shoulders of a team’s medical staff. We’ve seen the Colts shy away from such a move before (DE-Montez Sweat in 2019), although Phillips’ red flags are much different (concussion issues versus Sweat’s heart concerns). If the Colts have any hesitancy in the medial component—research that’s been a bit hindered this offseason—it’s hard to see them actually making that selection at No. 21, no matter the need and Phillips’ skillset. Oweh oozes with testing potential but the lack of collegiate production is glaring. Still, we’ve seen Chris Ballard more inclined to draft on traits, rather than production, especially at that position. Lately, fewer and fewer mocks have Darrisaw sliding all the way to the Colts at No. 21. Jenkins is an interesting prospect, but the question about him making the permanent switch to left tackle remains. Even though Jim Irsay has dropped the nugget about cornerback being a remaining need, it’s been a while since the Colts have been slotted a corner at No. 21 overall.