Profiles of the 2013 Indianapolis Colts draft picks, listed by round, overall draft spot, name, position, college, height and weight.
1. (24) Bjorern Werner, de-olb, Florida State, 6-3, 266.
The German-born star didn’t start playing football until he was 12 years old and only then played flag football. He came to the U.S. as a 15-year-old foreign exchange student, returned home, then came back to the U.S. for his final season of high school football and played well enough to convince Florida State to take a chance on him. It paid immediate dividends. As a freshman, Werner played in all 14 games. He started his last 27 games with the Seminoles and finished last season with 13 sacks and eight passes defensed, earning ACC defensive player of the year honors. He slid down some draft charts after running a 4.83-second 40-yard dash at the NFL’s annual scouting combine. But the Colts plan to move him from end to outside linebacker and are hoping the quick-learning Werner makes a smooth transition to the NFL.
3. (86) Hugh Thornton, og, Illinois, 6-3, 320.
Thornton provides depth along an offensive line the Colts are trying to rebuild for Andrew Luck. He adds size and strength, has a nasty streak and, after playing tackle and guard in college provides versatility, too. Last season, he played left tackle and graded out as Illinois’ top offensive linemen. He played well enough to earn second-team all-Big Ten honors from the coaches and an invitation to the Senior Bowl where Colts GM Ryan Grigson came away impressed. The transition may be made smoother, too, since Colts offensive line coach Joe Gilbert recruited Thornton and coached him at Illinois before joining the Colts.
4. (121) Khaled Holmes, c-og, Southern California, 6-3, 302.
Holmes gives the Colts another young, big body to help protect Luck along the interior part of the line. Admittedly, he played better as a junior perhaps because of a high ankle sprain that slowed him for most of his senior season. Holmes is stand-up guy with a strong football pedigree. His father played at Michigan, his older brother, Alex, won two national titles with the Trojans and played two years in the NFL, and his sister is married to Troy Polamalu. Against Utah, Holmes botched two snaps that led to touchdowns and was called for holding in a three-play sequence. After the Trojans rallied to win, Holmes apologized to his teammates for putting them in that position. The draft also marks the end of a remarkable run with Matt Barkley. Holmes and Barkley have been teammates since their freshmen year in high school.
5. (139) Montori Hughes, dt, Tennessee-Martin, 6-4, 329.
Hughes adds more size and depth to a defensive line that has undergone a major makeover this offseason. Clearly, the Colts needed to get bigger up front to stop and the run and Hughes fits. But he has had trouble off the field. Multiple incidents got him booted off the team at Tennessee. He resurrected his career at Tennessee-Martin where he started 18 games and made 72 tackles in his final two seasons, and now the Colts are comparing his massive size and movement with Ravens Pro Bowler Haloti Ngata, someone coach Chuck Pagano worked with before joining the Colts.
6. (192) John Boyett, s, Oregon, 5-10, 205.
Boyett provides depth at strong safety after the Colts signed Pro Bowler LaRon Landry in free agency and adds another big-hitting presence in a revamped secondary. Boyett was the first freshman to ever lead Oregon in tackles and was an all-conference choice as a junior. He started his senior season on the watch lists for the Bednarik Award, Bronko Nagurski Trophy and Jim Thorpe Award, but his final season in Eugene was sabotaged by injuries to both knees. He wound up making two tackles and picking off one pass in his only game, against Arkansas State. Boyett wasn’t willing to give a timetable for when he’ll be healthy. The Colts have told Boyett to take his time.
7. (230) Kerwynn Williams, rb-ret, Utah State, 5-7, 196.
Williams is a small player who Indy believes can help at tailback, line up in the slot and return kicks. He certainly has been successful moving around. Before leading Utah State to a bowl game last season, he was an option quarterback in high school. But he burst onto the scene as a runner last season, impressing scouts by rushing 18 times for 235 yards and earning MVP honors in the Idaho Potato Bowl. He was ranked 13th in the nation in rushing last season, averaging 116.3 yards per game and twice topped the 100-yard mark rushing and receiving in the same game.
7. (254) Justice Cunningham, te, South Carolina, 6-4, 264.
This year’s Mr. Irrelevant is anything but to the Colts. Though Cunningham knows he’s headed to the NFL because of his body and his blocking skills, the Colts also see a receiver with a penchant for putting the ball in the end zone. He’s still improving, too. After catching just 27 passes in his first three seasons with the Gamecocks, Cunningham nearly doubled that total last season, catching 22 for 287 yards. And in Pep Hamilton’s offense, there’s always room for an extra tight end.