According to NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah, the Indianapolis Colts are a ‘team fit’ for prized Virginia Tech offensive tackle prospect Christian Darrisaw ahead of the 2021 NFL Draft—in his annual pre-draft media call (via NFL.com’s Chase Goodbread):
“Following the retirement of Anthony Castonzo, Virginia Tech’s Christian Darrisaw could be an option for the Colts at No. 21 overall to play offensive tackle,” Goodbread writes.
‘He’s got a really strong upper body. He can latch on and control guys — a powerful guy,’ Jeremiah said. ‘He’s really good in the run game.’
“Jeremiah also sees Oklahoma State’s Teven Jenkins and Michigan’s Jalen Mayfield as possible fits in Indianapolis,” Goodbread added.
Asked @MoveTheSticks if the Colts might need to move up from No. 21 if they wanted to draft a plug-and-play LT.
Nope. He says Christian Darrisaw, Teven Jenkins and Jalen Mayfield could all be available around there & step in and play right away.
— Jim Ayello (@jimayello) March 9, 2021
“The 6’5”, 314 pound junior offensive tackle started in all 9 games this past season on the blindside for the Hokies—earning 2020 First-Team All-ACC honors.
He also started all 13 games at left tackle as a sophomore in 2019.”
Here’s Darrisaw’s recent scouting report via Jeremiah, as he currently ranks the big blindside bookend as his 26th best prospect overall:
“Darrisaw was a solid, reliable starter at left tackle during his career with the Hokies. He has ideal size, length and balance. In the passing game, he has average foot quickness in his set but can bend his knees and plays with a firm base. He has a sharp two-hand punch and generally keeps defenders away from his chest. He plays with excellent awareness. He uses his upper-body strength to torque and turn defenders in the run game. He takes good angles to the second level, where he’s able to position and wall off linebackers. He will have some trouble adjusting in space because of his average change-of-direction skills. I view Darrisaw as a player who’ll be starting at right tackle very early in his NFL career.”
As noted, the Colts have a sizable hole at starting left tackle following longtime veteran Anthony Castonzo’s earlier offseason retirement.
Darrisaw might be the best offensive tackle potentially available for the Colts at #21—who fills an immediate need and has a chance to be a potential star at the position down the road as he continues to develop.
He’s a ‘plug-and-play’ starter along the blindside, as he has good athleticism, strength, a long reach, and surprisingly quick feet for his sheer size.
Darrisaw is a mauler in the ground game—blocking with tremendous physicality, overpowering opponents, and he has the ability to consistently get to the second level of opposing defenses in space.
Given his movement skills, he projects to be a natural in the Colts’ zone-blocking scheme.
While he’s more of an asset arguably in run than pass blocking, he’s rock solid at both—featuring powerful hands, strength, and quality lateral quickness as a pass protector.
Darrisaw’s overall technique could use some refinement, but Colts’ offensive line coaches Chris Strausser and Kevin Mawae could definitely coach him up in due time.
Darrisaw remains one of my favorite prospects for the Colts during late April’s NFL Draft because he’s the type of top offensive tackle prospect where need and best talent available could definitely meet with the 21st overall selection.