Colts pick up 4th-round compensatory pick for April 27-29 draft

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The Indianapolis Colts will head into the April 27 draft with a full complement of picks after being awarded one compensatory pick Friday.

The NFL handed out 32 compensatory picks, including a fourth-rounder (No. 144 overall) to the Colts. Compensatory picks are determined from a formula that takes into account a team’s net gain from veteran free agency the previous season.

The Colts signed quarterback Scott Tolzien and cornerback Patrick Robinson but lost tight end Coby Fleener (to New Orleans), linebacker Jerrell Freeman (to Chicago) and safety Dwight Lowery (to San Diego).

The additional pick increases the Colts’ total to seven. The allotment includes one pick in rounds 1, 2, 3, 5 and 6 and two in round 4. They traded their seventh-round pick to Cleveland in 2015 for defensive lineman Billy Winn.

The Colts’ first-round pick will either be 14th or 15th overall. A coin flip March 3 during the NFL Scouting Combine will break a tie with the Philadelphia Eagles.

While much of the attention during the draft will focus on the Colts’ early picks, no one should casually dismiss the possible impact of an additional fourth-rounder or one at No. 144 or later.

Notable Colts selected later than the 144th slot include linebacker Cato June (round 6, No. 198 in 2003), safety Antoine Bethea (round 6, No. 207 in ’06), wide receiver Pierre Garcon (round 6, No. 205 in ’08), running back Vick Ballard (round 5, No. 170 in ’12) and offensive lineman Joe Haeg (round 5, No. 155 in ’16).

Also, the recent retirement of Pat McAfee created a major void on special teams, and the Colts have been able to address that situation through late-round picks. They used a seventh-rounder (No. 222) on McAfee in ’09 and a seventh-rounder (No. 210) on Hunter Smith in 1999.

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