Austin Collie finished his career at BYU as the best receiver ever to pass through the program, and he did it in three years. Many were disappointed with how late he was picked in the draft, but given his current situation as a fixture in one of the more prolific passing attacks in the NFL, it’s easy to say things turned out alright for him.
True to the form he showed while at BYU, Collie is meeting and surpassing expectations by his hard work and athletic skills. He’s been playing the critical slot position in a Colt offense that goes three-wide with the majority of their sets.
A comparison of Collie versus those 16 drafted ahead of him would indicate that he was worthy of at least an early second-round pick. Here’s how Collie stacks up against all those drafted ahead of him heading into week 15 of the NFL season:
7th pick of the 1st round: Darrius Heyward-Bey, Oakland Raiders - 9 catches for 124 yards and a touchdown
10th pick of the 1st round: Michael Crabtree, San Francisco 49ers - 37 catches for 473 yards and 2 touchdowns
19th pick of the 1st round: Jeremy Maclin, Philadelphia Eagles - 46 catches for 623 yards and 4 touchdowns
22nd pick of the 1st round: Percy Harvin, Minnesota Vikings - 48 for 681 yards and 6 touchdowns
29th pick of the 1st round: Hakeem Nicks, New York Giants - 38 for 685 yards and 6 touchdowns
30th pick of the 1st round: Kenny Britt, Tennessee Titans - 38 for 642 yards and 3 touchdowns
4th pick of the 2nd round: Brian Robiskie, Cleveland Browns - 5 for 92 yards and 0 touchdowns
18th pick of the 2nd round: Mohamed Massaquoi, Cleveland Browns - 29 for 546 yards and 2 touchdowns
19th pick of the 3rd round: Brandon Tate, New England Patriots - 0 catches and 1 rush for 11 yards
20th pick of the 3rd round: Mike Wallace, Pittsburgh Steelers - 32 for 530 yards and 3 touchdowns
21st pick of the 3rd round: Ramses Barden, New York Giants - 0 catches
23rd pick of the 3rd round: Patrick Turner, Miami Dolphins - 0 catches
27th pick of the 3rd round: Deon Butler, Seattle Seahawks - 11 for 130 yards and 0 touchdowns
35th pick of the 3rd round: Juaquin Iglesias, Chicago Bears - hasn’t been able to participate due to injuries
7th pick of the 4th round: Mike Thomas, Jacksonville Jaguars - 33 for 311 yards and 0 touchdowns
8th pick of the 4th round: Brian Hartline, Miami Dolphins - 24 for 345 yards and 3 touchdowns
27th pick of the 4th round: Austin Collie, Indianapolis Colts - 50 catches for 540 yards and 6 touchdowns
Collie leads all rookies in receptions and is tied for first in touchdowns. There are those that have more yardage, which is due to them playing on the outside as opposed to his slot position, but based on a one-year sample it is readily apparent that Collie was very undervalued on draft day.