Written by Thomas Scott
May 23, 2017
The transition from collegiate athletics to the NFL can be extremely daunting, especially for players from smaller schools. Critics often wonder if their skills will translate to the next level. While Grover Stewart fits the small school description, don’t expect the 6’4, 347 pound defensive tackle to be intimidated by the new level of competition.
“Everybody puts on their pads like I do.” – Grover Stewart
Last month, the Indianapolis Colts selected Grover Stewart from Albany State with the 144th pick in the NFL Draft. They expect Stewart to boost a shaky Colts defense that ranked 19th in sacks and 26th in rushing defense.
Stewart is no stranger to this role. At Albany State he recorded 27 career sacks and was named ASU Athlete of the Year in his senior season. In addition, Stewart led ASU to the SIAC Championship in 2013, played in the SIAC title game in 2014 and 2015, and won 3 SIAC East Division titles.
According to the IndyStar, Grover Stewart instantly impressed the Colts coaching staff during rookie minicamp. They could see flashes of his potential from day one. Stewart consistently excelled in one on one drills and was able to get into the backfield on several occassions. When asked about his role, Coach Chuck Pagano had this to say:
“He’ll push the pocket, but I think you can get him matched up in some of these guards and he’s going to win a lot of these one-on-one matchups.”
Colts training camp begins on July 30th. Stewart will have a chance to compete for his spot on the depth chart.