For the past two years, the Indianapolis Colts‘ obvious need for a pass rusher has been overstated. With Chris Ballard inserted as the new general manager, one draft analyst believes the team will finally address the issue.
Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller believes the Colts will select Michigan Wolverines defensive end Vidauntae “Taco” Charlton with the 15th pick overall. The four-year player out of Ann Arbor would be an interesting pick for Indianapolis.
More from Ink on Indy
- Still Searching for Their Groove, Pacers Take on Struggling Magic Thursday Night
- Pacers Travel to the Nation’s Capital to Begin Four Game Road Trip
- Update on Pacers’ Oladipo’s Serious Leg Injury
- Has Romeo Langford Been a Disappointment for the Hoosiers?
- The Indianapolis Colts Have a Brutal Road Schedule in 2019
"“Taco Charlton can be inconsistent, but when he turns his motor on all the way, it’s an impressive sight to see. He’s long, athletic and has the hips to turn the corner and create issues for offenses. He’s more Chandler Jones than Von Miller in terms of body and strength, but at Michigan he has proved to be the type of force off the edge who can wreak havoc on passing downs.”"
Charlton played mildly in his first two seasons at Michigan. His draft stock skyrocketed once Jim Harbaugh and defensive coordinator Don Brown arrived in Ann Arbor. Together, they helped Charlton churn out 15 sacks in his final two seasons; including 9.5 in his final year.
At 6-6 and 272 pounds, in is no wonder why many analysts and experts compare Charlton to Chandler Jones. He is a physical freak. Scouts continuously marvel about his athleticism and think he is nowhere close to reaching his full potential.
Unfortunately, Charlton’s development is dependent on his motivation to train on and off the field. Many scouts and analysts have put the “inconsistent” label on Charlton. That negative label could cause some teams to shy away from picking him; like the Colts (maybe).
With the Colts’ well-documented defensive issues, they cannot afford to miss a first round pick, especially on the defensive side of the ball. The buzzword “inconsistency” could cause the Colts to hesitate on picking Charlton when their time comes at 14th or 15th overall.
Interestingly, Charlton’s inconsistency strengthens his similarity to Chandler Jones. Jones was the 21st pick overall in the 2012 NFL Draft after only earning 10 sacks in three years at Syracuse University. Jones was drafted on potential and physical stature alone.
That gamble worked for the New England Patriots. Jones had 36 sacks in four seasons with the Patriots and just had an 11-sack season with the Arizona Cardinals in 2016.
Overall, the positives far outweigh the negative for Taco Charlton. NFL.com writer Lance Zierlein had the best description for Charlton’s potential. “High-impact defensive end with all-pro potential is his (Charlton’s) ceiling. His floor is solid starter.”
Although Charlton is listed as defensive end, Chuck Pagano could toy around with in their defensive formations. His size and athleticism should allow him to be a 3-4 defensive end and an outside linebacker in pass rushing situations.
The Colts need a playmaker on the defensive side of the ball. Taco Charlton could provide the production they desperately need from a pass rushing perspective.