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This Second-Round Pick Could Have a Solid Rookie Year for the Indianapolis Colts

Although he hasn’t played this season yet, Indianapolis native Julius Brents could have a productive rookie season for his hometown Colts.
Julius Brents Colts

Indianapolis Colts rookie Julius Brents didn’t play in either of the team’s first two games this season. But once he finally hits the field, the 23-year-old cornerback could instantly become a key piece in the Colts’ secondary.

Brents has been hampered by injuries and is currently rehabbing from offseason wrist surgery caused him to miss the entire spring workout period. He later pulled a hamstring at the start of training camp. After playing two preseason games, he reinjured his hamstring right before the final preseason contest against the Philadelphia Eagles. Hopefully, he’ll make his regular season debut soon for the 1-1 Colts.

Colts’ Julius Brents Could Make an Impact This Season

Hometown Hero

Surely, Julius Brents was ecstatic when he found out he was drafted by the Colts. He was born and raised in Indianapolis and attended Warren Central High School, which is located on the city’s east side. “JuJu” also grew up being a fan of superstar quarterback Peyton Manning and hard-hitting safety Bob Sanders. Those two are definitely Colts legends and were fun to watch during the 2000s.

Selected in the second round (44th overall pick) of the 2023 NFL Draft, Brents is one of only four Indianapolis-born players to ever be drafted by the Colts. Jeff George (1990), Anthony Johnson (1990), and Lamont Warren (1994) were the first three.

Brents began his college career playing for Iowa just like his childhood hero, Bob Sanders. However, he struggled to stay on the field, playing a total of seven games during his two seasons with the Hawkeyes. Brents later transferred to Kansas State. He emerged as a star for the Wildcats, recording 49 tackles and an interception in 2021. Last season, he had 45 tackles and four interceptions, earning a spot on the All-Big 12 First Team.

Fills a Need in Colts’ Secondary

During the offseason, the Colts traded Stephon Gilmore to the Dallas Cowboys and lost Brandon Facyson in free agency. They also released Isaiah Rodgers after being suspended indefinitely for gambling policy violations. The moves significantly weakened Indianapolis’ secondary.

Thus far, the Colts have struggled to stop the pass this season.  They rank 29th in pass coverage grade (56.0), meaning there are only three teams in the league that are worse.

In Week 2 against the Houston Texans, C.J. Stroud carved up the Colts defense, completing 30 of his 47 pass attempts for 384 yards and two touchdowns. The Colts won the contest 31-20, even after losing quarterback Anthony Richardson early due to a concussion. However, their secondary needs to improve if the team wants to win a lot of games this season.

The 6-foot-3 Brents has the potential to be a big-time performer. He possesses a combination of athleticism, physicality, length, and toughness, which is needed to become a top-notch NFL cornerback. He recorded a 41.5-inch vertical and a near 83-inch vertical at the NFL Combine. Brents should be perfect for coordinator Gus Bradley’s defense in Indianapolis. The talented rookie can provide help to a Colts’ secondary that includes the likes of Kenny Moore II, Julian Blackmon, Darrell Baker Jr., and Rodney Thomas II.

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