Indianapolis Colts 2021 Fantasy Football Rookie Roundup

indianapolis colts

The Indianapolis Colts made a massive splash this offseason, trading for erstwhile Philadelphia Eagles’ quarterback Carson Wentz. They hope that he can be their quarterback of the future, something they thought they had right up until Andrew Luck suddenly retired two weeks before the 2019 season. In the draft, the Indianapolis Colts ended up taking three fantasy football-eligible players. Unfortunately, and this is a spoiler alert: none of the Indianapolis Colts rookies will matter for 2021 fantasy football. Anyway, I wrote about the Indianapolis Colts’ draft picks, despite that fact.

Rd Pick Player Pos. College
1 21 Kwity Paye DE Michigan
2 54 Dayo Odeyingbo DE Vanderbilt
4 127 Kylen Granson  TE SMU
5 165 Shawn Davis S Florida
6 218 Sam Ehlinger  QB Texas
7 229 Mike Strachan  WR Charleston (WV)
7 248 Will Fries OG Penn State
Round 4: Pick 127 Overall: Kylen Granson, Tight End, SMU (6’3” 235 pounds)
Depth Chart:
TE1:        Jack Doyle
TE2:        Mo Alie-Cox
TE3:        Kylen Granson

The Indianapolis Colts replaced Trey Burton with an athletic, if undersized tight end. Granson can’t really inline block, but we don’t need that too much at the NFL level, especially with his versatile skillset. SMU used Granson all over as a move tight end, and that’s how he’s best utilized. He gets blown off the blocks inline, but gets better licks in with a head of steam from the backfield. Switching out to the slot or out wide also helps create mismatches for teams. Granson is also very fast for a tight end, and relatively athletic (7.72 Relative Athletic Score). Unfortunately, he is undersized, so linebackers can bully him. He’s also pretty fast, but most coverage linebackers are faster, so he can’t blow past them.

Granson feels like a tweener without a position. Thankfully, the NFL is in the middle of a move toward those types of tight ends, away from the Logan Paulson pure blocker types. In the end, he probably helps Jonathan Taylor as a fullback and Carson Wentz as a chess piece more than he helps in fantasy football over his career.


I’m done trying to chase Indianapolis tight ends. Back before man learned how to etch his thoughts onto tablets, we argued about Dwayne Allen and Coby Fleener. Then that idea just sort of floated through a bunch of underused tight ends. I refuse to throw Granson on that pile. He’s also a blocking-first tight end with two pass catchers ahead of him in the depth chart.


I don’t draft rookie tight ends in redraft, with Kyle Pitts barely making for an exception. There’s no way that Granson ends up on my roster. As a corollary, I am also done with Colts tight ends. I am sick and tired of chasing perceived volume from four quarterbacks ago. Granson will make some fun catches, but he’s a chess piece to help the offense, not anything to help your fantasy football leagues.

Round 6, Pick 218 Overall: Sam Ehlinger, Quarterback, Texas (6’1” 222 pounds)
Depth Chart:
QB1:      Carson Wentz
QB2:      Jacob Eason
QB3:      Sam Ehlinger

More like Sam Mehlinger. There’s a new type of quarterback out there, and the prototype isn’t really a QB at all (if you ask ESPN). Ehlinger is in the Taysom Hill mold, in that he can do a little bit of everything, but he doesn’t really have the basics of quarterbacking mastered. He has a loopy motion and every long ball would make Nena blush. As such, balls frequently land in front of the intended receiver, and sometimes in the DB’s hands. His accuracy seems like an accident, but he can really snap off some great throws. Ehlinger looks great when he moves out of the pocket to throw off-platform but then the ball’s final landing spot is seemingly determined by a random number generator.

He’s the new Taysom Hill, and I will regard him with all the derision that comes with that designation.


I am not excited to try to chase the Taysom Hill Experience on a different team with a less potent passing game. He’s a passing fad and will not touch the ball enough in any given week to have any fantasy football relevance. As a real quarterback, he sits as the third-string QB, but he will be fun to watch in week three of preseason!


Unless ESPN can biff it again and let you start a quarterback in your tight end slot, then Ehlinger has literally zero fantasy football value his rookie year.

Round 7, Pick 229 Overall: Mike Strachan, Wide Receiver, Charleston (6’5” 226 pounds)
Depth Chart:
WR1:     T.Y. Hilton
WR2:     Michael Pittman Jr.
WR3:     Parris Campbell
WR4:     Zach Pascal
WR5:     Dezmon Patmon
WR6:     Ashton Dulin
WR7:     J.J. Nelson
WR8:     Mike Strachan

Mike Strachan is big and fast, posting a 4.54 40-yard dash at his size. His size-adjusted speed score is near-elite, so it makes sense for the Indianapolis Colts to take a flier on Strachan. If you’re looking for someone who contributes immediately, look elsewhere. Strachan is athletic but rawer than sushi, mostly relying on his athleticism to beat up on smaller, slower cornerbacks. The massive wide receiver also hasn’t played football since 2019, as his Charleston lost their entire 2020 season due to COVID-19.


Look at that depth chart. There aren’t a lot of great players on that list after the top few guys, but Mike Strachan isn’t a great player. His best path toward opportunity is injury, unfortunately. He doesn’t have the WR5 body type that gets game day activation due to Special Teams play, so he likely spends the year on the practice squad. If he gets a lot of opportunity in consecutive games, I fear what has happened to the rest of the Colts’ WR corps.


If you’re in a 35 roster spot league with a taxi squad, I guess throw him on your taxi squad. It’s possible he never gets a snap until 2022 or 2023.

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About Jeff Krisko

You can follow me on twitter, @jeffkrisko for the same lukewarm takes you read here.

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