The Indianapolis Colts already made one of the biggest pre-draft moves with a blockbuster trade with the New York Jets.
That doesn’t mean Colts general manager Chris Ballard is not willing to make more moves in the upcoming NFL Draft, even if it means trading down again, NFL Netwwork insider Ian Rapoport reported.
“We will be open to moving back if we think it is the right thing for us to do and there’s enough players on the board,” Ballard told Rapoport on Thursday.
Last month, Ballard shipped the No. 3 overall selection to the New York Jets in exchange for the sixth pick and a pair of second-rounders — Nos. 37 and 49 — in this year’s draft and a 2019 second-round selection.
Ballard, in his second season with the franchise, defended the trade by saying the move still gives Indianapolis the chance to “acquire a premium player” while also giving the team nine picks in this year’s draft.
“I’m not going to be critical of what’s gone on in the past,” Ballard told the Indianapolis Star. “But we are where we are. We have to draft. With the nine picks we have this year, that gives us a lot of flexibility next year. And we think we’re going to get a comp pick next year. That’s 18 draft picks over two years to really replenish the young players.”
Quarterbacks are expected to dominate the first round of the draft, with Rob Rang of NFLDraftScout.com projecting three to go among the top five selections.
USC quarterback Sam Darnold is viewed as the top overall prospect in the draft by Rang in his most Big Board. Rang lists UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen as second, followed by Penn State running back Saquon Barkley, Notre Dame offensive guard Quenton Nelson and North Carolina State defensive end Bradley Chubb.
Alabama defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick, Virginia Tech linebacker Tremaine Edmunds and Ohio State cornerback Denzel Ward are next on Rang’s Big Board.