2023 mock NFL Draft 3.0: Final 11th-hour edition (with trades)

Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /
5 of 34
Will Anderson, Alabama Crimson Tide
Will Anderson, Alabama Crimson Tide(Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /

4. player. 829. . EDGE. Crimson Tide . Will Anderson

On the clock: Pick No. 4: Indianapolis Colts – Will Anderson, EDGE, Alabama

Mock Draft 1.0 – C.J. Stroud, Quarterback, Ohio State
Mock Draft 2.0 – Anthony Richardson, Quarterback, Florida

The trendy pick for the Indianapolis Colts is a quarterback, but there are a few considerations that changed the pick. The first is that the consensus best defender in the class, Will Anderson is available here unlike in previous mocks, and their 2022 sack leader Yannick Ngakoue is definitely moving on.

Former 49er Samson Ebukam has signed for the Colts but he’s more of a rotational player. The Colts need a quarterback but they also need a pass rush, and they can always wait until next year when they could have a chance at better quarterback talents like Caleb Williams from USC or Drake Maye from North Carolina.

Anderson had 51 tackles, 10 sacks and an interception returned for a touchdown for the season for Alabama. He blitzed the Combine with 4.6 second 40-yard time that’s very good for his 6-foot-3, 253-pound frame and an excellent 1.61 10-yard split to go with it.

There are some concerns on whether or not Anderson has the size to battle larger linemen, and he was held in check by another potential first-round pick in Darnell Wright when Alabama played Tennessee, but he should still be a safe pick to develop into a centerpiece EDGE for an NFL defense.

While this is a little against the grain for Indianapolis, the value of Anderson falling to them would be too good to pass up for a team that needs help getting to the quarterback and needs a defensive leader.