NFL Draft: Notre Dame's Quenton Nelson Drafted By Indianapolis Colts

NFL Draft: Notre Dame's Quenton Nelson Drafted By Indianapolis Colts

Nelson was the first off the board as he was taken sixth overall by the Colts, while McGlinchey went three picks later and landed with the 49ers.

Coach Frank Reich told reporters that he was convinced Nelson was not only the top lineman in this year's draft abut also was the best linemen he had seen out of college in "a while". Nelson had a decent combine showing, finishing tied for second among offensive linemen in the bench press with 35 reps. More to the point, Nelson is the first guard to be selected with a top-6 pick since New Orleans took Jim Dombrowski in '86. How far back? Try 1967, when Paul Seiler and Tom Regner went twelfth and 23rd, respectively.

"I want to finish my man on every play, whether it's in the running game or the passing game", Nelson said. But they each made their mark at Notre Dame and now get a chance to do the same on the biggest stage.

In taking some time away from celebrating being the NFL's highest guard selected in the last 2 decades, Nelson described the mindset that placed him in such rare O-line company.

He'll be the third first-round pick on Indianapolis' current offensive line - joining left tackle Anthony Castonzo (2011) and center Ryan Kelly (2016). He immediately upgrades the line as a whole and should become one of the better guards in the league relatively early in his career.

Why Raiders fans should be excited about Kolton Miller
Left tackle Donald Penn, meanwhile, is about to turn 35 and returning from foot surgery, and his contract expires after 2019. Now holding the No. 10 pick, Arizona selected quarterback Josh Rosen, who had almost fallen out of the first round.

Chris Ballard likes to watch players live.

The bigger question continues to be Luck, who not thrown a regulation football since returning from rehab in Europe late previous year.

They no doubt had offers to trade back into the draft once again, but refused once they saw Nelson was still available. He's got everything we want in terms of character, work ethic, toughness, passion for the game.

He "felt" running back Adrian Peterson during his time at Oklahoma and wide receiver Dez Bryant in his days at Oklahoma State.

"Protecting the quarterback is important, " Ballard said. You can just feel it sometimes. "He's nasty, he's tough and his football character is off the charts". It also wouldn't be surprising to see them trade one of their second round picks to accumulate more picks later in the draft.

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