INDIANAPOLIS – It’s been a while since the Colts have used a relatively high draft pick on an edge rusher.
Last month the Colts drafted outside linebacker
Using that sort of pick on a player known for getting after the quarterback has not been too frequent for the Colts.
In fact, besides Bjoern Werner in 2013, 2010 first-round pick Jerry Hughes was the last time the Colts spent a top-four round selection on an edge rusher.
What are the Colts getting in Basham, the 2016 MAC Defensive Player of the Year?
“There’s certainly a will to get after the quarterback,” Jimmy Burrow, Basham’s defensive coordinator at Ohio University, says.
“He can do it from a three-point (stance) and stand up and do it. He did a little of both for us in that regard.”
Basham, who is listed at 6-4 and 262 pounds, will now move into a more permanent 3-4 scheme in coming to the Colts.
One aspect of Basham’s game that was attractive to the Colts comes from what he shows at the snap of the ball.
“His get off with us was mostly from a three-point (and) was really unbelievable,” Burrow says. “He got a jump on those offensive tackles and that was huge for us.
“He’s so explosive, one of those fast-twitch guys that not only has that ability but he has the want to really play at a high speed. All that adds up.”
Even though the pass rushing part of Basham’s game will eventually be the most scrutinized, the Colts do see three-down value in their rookie outside linebacker.
Burrow acknowledges that presence must continue to develop with Basham.
“He was very good against the run, but his mindset was, ‘Hey, I’m going after that quarterback.’ When he gets to the NFL, just being a little more consistent in stopping the run and making sure that is as big a part of his game as rushing the passer (is key),” Burrow says. “By no means was he not good at stopping the run with us.
“If you ask him what he wants to do it’s, ‘Hey, I’m going to go get that quarterback.’ That was really never an issue, but I know as you get to the next level, you really better be able to do both. I guess although you get paid to sack the quarterback, right?”
Yes, you certainly do.
And the Colts would love to be paying Basham one day as their next franchise pass rusher.
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