The Colts added juice to Reggie Wayne's wide receiver room on Friday, selecting Cincinnati wideout Alec Pierce with the No. 53 overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.
The 6-foot-3, 211 pound Pierce caught 52 passes for 884 yards with eight touchdowns and was a team captain for the Bearcats, who reached the College Football Playoff, in 2021. Over 45 games (30 starts) with Cincinnati, Pierce caught 106 passes for 1,851 yards (17.5 yards/reception) with 13 touchdowns.
One of Pierce's biggest games of his senior year came in Cincinnati's win over Notre Dame in South Bend, in which he had six catches for 144 yards. It was one of three 100-yard games Pierce had in 2021.
"I couldn't be more excited for Alec and his family," Cincinnati head coach Luke Fickell said. "Alec is tough, intelligent and an incredible athlete. The Colts are getting a guy who has the potential to be a star in this league. He's an explosive player, and we weren't surprised when he tested off the charts at the combine. He's obviously a smart guy, earning an engineering degree and receiving First Team Academic All-America. He's got such a competitive streak that I tried to move him to linebacker when he was a freshman. We are glad he moved back to wide receiver. I'm excited to see him grow in Indianapolis."
Pierce was clocked at 4.41 seconds in the 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine earlier this year. The Athletic’s Dane Brugler wrote of Pierce’s strengths:
"Tall, angular frame…swift strider, and accelerates quickly to stack corners vertically…accomplished prep high jumper and volleyball player with above-average high-pointing and leaping skills…tracks the football naturally downfield…the game appears to slow down for him at the catch point, allowing him to make graceful adjustments on the ball…gives his quarterback a large target thanks to his size and strong hands to finish over defensive backs…sharp footwork in his releases to slip past the jam…played extensively as a gunner on special teams his first two years (seven tackles), and coached experimented with him at linebacker as a freshman…made Bruce Feldman's annual Freak List and broke Cincinnati's skill-position record with a 675-pound deadlift…became fifth player in school history to earn CoSIDA First Team Academic All-American Honors …named a 2021 team captain…shows the same competitive fire as both a receiver and a blocker…ranks No. 9 in school history in receiving yards (1,851)."
Pierce played safety and wide receiver at Glenbard West High School in Glen Ellyn, Ill. – just outside of Chicago – and also played basketball, volleyball and ran track as a high schooler. Pierce comes from a family of athletes – his father played football and his mother played volleyball collegiately at Northwestern; his older brother, Justin, played college basketball at William & Mary and North Carolina, and his younger brother, Caden, is committed to play college basketball at Princeton.
The Colts traded down from No. 42 to No. 53 as part of a pick swap with the Minnesota Vikings earlier in the night.
View photos of Cincinnati WR Alec Pierce, selected in the second round by the Indianapolis Colts.
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