INDIANAPOLIS – One of Chris Ballard’s favorite areas got some attention on the final day of the draft.
With the 239th overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, the Colts took Yale cornerback Rodney Thomas in Round Seven .
Here are 3 takeaways on Thomas:
Long Corner Coming To Indy
At 6-1 and 196 pounds, Rodney Thomas brings a frame the Colts continue to covet at the cornerback position. Thomas was an All-Ivy league pick in 2021, with 11 passes broken up and 2 interceptions. With a 41-inch vertical jump, Thomas falls into the draft pick trend of being a strong athlete. That length should put Thomas on the outside, although he has a frame that indicates some versatility could be in his future. Thomas was actually a linebacker at one point at Yale, with chatter about him playing safety, too.
Obviously, the Yale aspect to Thomas’ resume was attractive to the Colts. We know that the Colts are open to changing some things up at the back end of their defense under Gus Bradley. That’s being willing to use a little bit more press coverage. Learning under Stephon Gilmore should be welcomed by Thomas, too. We’ve seen the Bradley voice impact several moves this offseason and it was apparent here on Day 3 of the draft as the Colts make some changes to their defensive philosophy.
Cornerback Gets Needed Pick
The signing of Stephon Gilmore did nothing for the cornerback need in the draft, IMO. Gilmore is 32 years old and has missed 14 games the last two seasons. Even fellow newcomer Brandon Facyson is a bit of an unknown long-term, as he plays on a one-year deal. So depth is always important at this position. Thomas is probably just one injury away from actually competing for some serious time in 2022. This is a good situation for Thomas to walk into.