Bradley Chubb favored as Colts’ first pick in mock drafts

Bradley Chubb #9 of the North Carolina State Wolfpack leaves the field with a piece of the Kenan Stadium hedges between his teeth following a win against the North Carolina Tar Heels on November 25, 2016 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. North Carolina State won 28-21. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – We’re a tad more than a month out from the NFL draft, plenty of time for speculation to run rampant.

Will the Cleveland Browns screw up their latest opportunity to acquire their quarterback of the future? Can the New York Giants actually pass on a QB with the second overall pick when they’re being led by 37-year old Eli Manning? Will QBs be selected with the first three picks for the first time since 1999? Might four be among the first five players selected?

And how will Chris Ballard handle the sixth overall pick? It’s dicey to speculate on whom the Indianapolis Colts general manager will add to his roster until the top-5 slots are filled. Or until we know for certain Ballard won’t trade back yet again to acquire additional picks.

So, let the speculation continue, and ramp up.

With the April 26-28 draft looming, we thought it would be interesting to peruse some of the mock drafts that tantalize, tease and infuriate fan bases across the NFL landscape. All have been updated since Ballard sent a shockwave through the league by trading the third overall pick to the New York Jets.

A look at how some mock drafts have the Colts using the sixth overall pick:

Albert Breer, SI.com: DE Bradley Chubb, N.C. State

  • Comment: This would be a great scenario for GM Chris Ballard – all those picks intact, and Chubb and Quenton Nelson still on the board. The tiebreaker between the two? Position value.

Rob Rang, NFLDraftScout.com: G Quenton Nelson, Notre Dame

  • Comment: The Colts’ decision to trade back is perhaps the best indication yet that the club is satisfied with Andrew Luck’s recovery. Acquiring three second-round picks (including the Jets. 2019 selection) to move down three spots and still have arguably the best player in the entire draft available? That’s a huge win for the Colts, who could use Nelson’s size, athleticism and nastiness inside.

Charles Davis, NFL.com: Chubb

  • Comment: This selection fills a screaming need for the Colts, but a huge internal debate must be had. Do they pick Chubb or Notre Dame OG Quenton Nelson to protect Andrew Luck?

Bucky Brooks, NFL.com: Chubb

  • Comment: The Colts desperately need a pass rusher to spark a defense that’s struggled to generate pressure off the edges.

Don Banks, Patriots.com: Chubb

  • Comment: Well played, Chris Ballard. Well played. The Colts general manager picked up those three second-round picks from New York for dropping down three slots, and still nabs Indy’s top target in the draft, the pass-rusher that is so desperately needed. That’s how you manipulate the draft, young grass-hopper.

Vinnie Iyer, Sporting News: Nelson

  • Comment: The Colts knew the risk of trading back from No. 3 would be losing out of both Chubb (second in the Giants in this mock) and (Saquon) Barkley (fifth to Denver). Good thing they can stay in-state and look to South Bend for a stud at a position of need.

Chad Reuter, NFL.com: (Colts trade down to 12 with Buffalo when Chubb is off the board) CB Denzel Ward

  • Comment: The Colts need bodies at the corner spot alongside Quincy Wilson, and get the best cover man in the draft despite moving down twice.