Tue. Jun 25th, 2024

Colts Rookie Lineman “Number One” in Analyst Rankings

By meerna Jun12,2024

The Indianapolis Colts enter 2024 with an offensive line they can believe in again. After a strong and resurgent 2023, Bernhard Raimann, Quenton Nelson, Ryan Kelly, Will Fries and Braden Smith will look to continue this trend. While these five players are the most noteworthy defenders on Indy’s roster, recent fourth-round draft pick Tanor Bortolini has fantastic potential and athleticism at both the center and defender positions.

In an interview titled Ross Tucker PodcastEmory Hunt Football game plan he expressed his highest appreciation to Bortolini and explained his reasoning in detail.

Hunt said further Ross Tucker Podcast: :

“Bortolini was my number one center in the class (2024), so I value him very much. And it looks like the Colts are going to have him play guard.”

Hunt goes into more detail about Bortolini’s fit with the Colts:

“So they’re ready, they’ve got three No. 1 receivers and my No. 1 center, so I already love what the Colts have done.”

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Bortolini is an athletic monster with quick feet and hands that Indianapolis will value in pass protection. During his career at Wisconsin in 2023, Bortolini recorded Professional focus on football pass protection mark of 80.3 on 497 passes. He also allowed just one sack and 11 pressures in the tough Big Ten Conference while playing consistently well for the Badgers.

While pass protection was Bortolini’s specialty, run blocking was not as highly rated (61.1). However, Bortolini is only 21 years old and has plenty of time to improve this asset of his game. While he is talented and already has excellent pass protection skills, he will still need to improve his run blocking considering Indy’s offense will be implemented through Anthony Richardson and Jonathan Taylor. They are both devastating runners.

Bortolini played center throughout 2023 and is still eligible to play as a backup in his rookie season with the Colts. However, Indianapolis likely wants him to guard behind Fries while fellow 2024 draftee Matt Goncalves serves as another swingman with Blake Freeland. Bortolini’s versatility is another advantage in bringing him to Indianapolis to bolster Shane Steichen’s offense.

Bortolini’s incredible athleticism and ceiling as a defender is something offensive line coach Tony Sparano Jr. is excited about. Bortolini could be a solid depth player right away as a rookie with a chance to develop into a starter at right guard if Indianapolis decides to part with Fries in 2025, when he will be a free agent.

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By meerna

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