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Monday, November 24, 2014

BLOG: Colts draft Moncrief in third round

BLOG — Andrew Luck has a new target to throw to in Indianapolis.

Former Ole Miss wide receiver Donte Moncrief was selected by the Colts in the third round of the NFL Draft Friday night, becoming the 90th player taken overall. Moncrief decided to forego his senior season after hauling in 59 passes for 938 yards and six touchdowns in 2013.

“I am so excited to see our rich tradition of NFL Rebels continue with Donte,” Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze said in a statement. “With this hard work and dedication, I expect him to join fellow Ole Miss greats Mike Wallace and Dexter McCluster as successful receivers at the next level.”

With ideal size (6-foot-2, 221 pounds), Moncrief was projected as a mid-round pick but may have improved his stock by answering questions about his speed and athleticism with a strong showing at the scouting combine in February. Moncrief posted the third-fastest 40 time among wideouts, running a 4.40, and tied for first in the broad jump (132 inches). He also turned in a 39 ½-inch vertical jump.

Still, Moncrief had to wait for his name to be called among a deep receiving class that saw 12 wideouts selected in the first two rounds.

Moncrief will join a Colts receiving corps that’s mixed with experienced veterans and youthful talent. Reggie Wayne, Hakeem Nicks and T.Y. Hilton, a 2012 draft pick, have each had a 1,000-yard season. LaVon Brazill was also a part of the Colts’ 2012 draft class while Griff Whalen and Da’Rick Rogers were signed by the team in 2012 and 2013, respectively.

Moncrief finished his Ole Miss career third in school history in receptions (156), receiving yards (2,371) and receiving touchdowns (20) and second in 100-yard games with nine. The Raleigh native’s most productive season came as a sophomore, when he had 66 receptions for 979 yards and 10 scores, which is tied for the program’s single-season record.

 (May 9, 2014)

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