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Indianapolis Colts

CurBeatElite

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Everything posted by CurBeatElite

  1. I have read several times that Cooper was the best athlete and football player out of all the Manning brothers. Unfortunately, he got that diagnosis... would've been cool to see all 3 of them in the league at the same time.
  2. The Pats picked up K'Neal Harry with their first draft pick. They also have added Demaryius Thomas, Dontrelle Inman and have retained Edleman. Yes, they lost Gronk, but he also missed 13 games over the past 3 seasons and they still win without him. They also have NYJ and Miami in their division (I think the AFC East has become the least competitive division in the NFL -- though, I think Buffalo is going to shock some people this year). I am somewhat of a Mahommes skeptic. He had a fantastic year last year, and played well in the post-season. I think he'll continue to be up near the top in QBs in the league, though I have a hard time imagining he's going to reproduce what he did last year on a consistent basis. NFL coaches sometimes take a year to figure things out, but I think he'll be contained much better this year after others have had a year of film on him to break down.
  3. Getting Reich instead of McDaniels is probably the best thing that could have happened for the Colts.
  4. He was mostly a centerfielder as a rookie, and yes after 6-7 weeks he was well on his way to the pro bowl. Last year, he was asked to shut down one side of the field, and he did that very well.
  5. Hooker had an interception in each of his first 3 starts. He was defensive rookie of the week on multiple occasions. He was getting a lot of buzz on major media outlets. Before he got hurt he was right up there near the league lead in interceptions, which is what defensive backs get voted into the pro-bowl on. Not sure what you're talking about in your second paragraph, he was on pace to have the most interceptions in the entire NFL or at least be tied. As a rookie, centerfield-type free safety, that is outstanding, regardless of where you were picked.
  6. I think Ballard initiates a lot of this, or at least doesn't back away from it. I remember reading something like the first pre-season game he went to, there was a tailgate club and he talks to them before every game to get their opinions on the team and to shed some light onto what's going on (I am not in that tailgate club, so I cannot verify that, but I do remember seeing a clip during his first season as GM where he was doing that -- I doubt any other GM's in the league do that).
  7. I think it is the players, but probably a quasi-random survey of them. If they surveyed every player on every team they'd have nearly 1,700 votes to count. I imagine they pick a random draw of 'x' players from a group of players that play greater than 'y' amount of snaps, or something like that. Wikipedia just says players who are not retired the next year are eligible, but most polls/surveys are selected with some sort of random component. I agree with you that Luck ought to be in the top 25 (I think in terms of most valuable last year, he should really be in the top 10). I would think Ebron gets in, as he did make the pro-bowl and he did lead the league in TDs for a TE, but agree with @NewColtsFan -- last year was really his break-out year, so he may get slighted. I remember the year Peyton missed the whole season with his neck injury, he was still voted into the top 100. He came in at 50 overall without playing a snap: http://www.nfl.com/videos/nfl-videos/09000d5d82966195/Top-100-Players-of-2012-Peyton-Manning I am sure some of it is guys just having respect for other guys, like you can see in above video. There's a good chance some players who didn't play great last year get votes over Ebron, just because Ebron hasn't earned as much respect throughout the league yet.
  8. This is pretty cool... You'll see Glowinski pushing a car down the highway, I'm assuming the person ran out of gas and put the car in neutral.
  9. Yes, Glow and Smith sure did help... but the Colts gave up 10 sacks in the first 5 games. Castonzo returned in week 6 and they gave up 8 sacks in the remaining 10 games. Castonzo's protecting Luck's blindside -- and it was very obvious when he returned that Luck went from getting sacked on average 2 times per game to getting sacked less than once per game.
  10. https://www.colts.com/news/simple-change-in-workout-regimen-has-rejuvenated-anthony-castonzo?fbclid=IwAR0NH5GMiwqEAAk09KdHu8MrzavoNgiYPbez00Dut7PKZaFLzzUj51EUNVU This is great news. Sounds like Rusty Jones really helped Castonzo out this season... if he's really going to play the best football of his life this year, that's a huge boost to our OL -- it was very obvious our OL made a huge leap when he returned to the field in week 6 last season.
  11. Tell really reminds me of a Seattle corner. Even though he played S in college, he's long and very fluid and our coaching staff is going to start him out there. There were a few games last year where Desir did a very good job shutting down top notch WRs (DeAndre Hopkins comes to mind). I have a feeling these coaches are hoping Desir can be that guy for us....maybe Q. Wilson, he really started to come along last year and he's only 21 (maybe 22), so even though this is his 3rd year, he's still the youngest guy on the team and should hopefully keep improving. The coaches should have the young guys call TY 'light' in practice a few times to get humbled and maybe learn a few lessons. http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap2000000258491/article/ty-hilton-seattle-seahawks-insults-fired-me-up
  12. I am not totally sure why Turay's play seemed to decrease during the season. I don't know if that was due to Lewis coming back, if Turay was dinged up some, or if that was part of the master plan to keep Turay healthy during his first 16 game season. But yes, 4 sacks from a rookie who was expected to be a developmental player is pretty good... I expect with the addition of Houston and more talent in the backfield Turay will improve this year as a rusher. Also seems like he's putting in a lot of time this offseason. https://twitter.com/kturay_58?lang=en That link is to Turay's twitter.... if you scroll down a few tweets, he's got some workout videos... he looks jacked.
  13. We are a young team, so it makes sense that expectations may become an issue. The three things that cause me to put little worry into this are: (1) I think Reich is a terrific leader, a calm leader, and he seems to really have this team bought into his system, (2) we have good veteran leaders on this team from Vinatieri to Luck, etc., and (3) it truly seems like the young guys that had success last year are mature beyond their years -- Nelson called every draft pick right after the draft to let them know what to expect when becoming a Colt, Leonard is definitely a terrific leader - moreso than a lot of 2nd year players -- and they are all hungry, so I don't think they'll let expectations get to their heads. This is from the article @NewColtsFan posted, but I like what Ballard says: On if Ballard believes a roster can be too young: “No. That’s a good point. I think we’ve got a good mix of vet players on the team. I think on defense our back end’s young, but (Clayton) Geathers is a vet — been here a long time; he’s played a lot of football. You look up front: Justin (Houston), (Jabaal) Sheard, (Margus) Hunt, (Denico) Autry are all vet players, and they all do things the right way. So the rest of the defense is really young — (Pierre) Desir’s played a lot of football. And then offensively with Andrew (Luck) and (Anthony) Castonzo and T.Y. (Hilton) and Jack Doyle and (Eric) Ebron — I mean, we’ve got enough vets on the team (that) I think helps balance it out..."
  14. I would guess on a few things -- (1) we have good, but not great depth -- we didn't drop off much last year when Kelly and Castanzo were hurt, but IMO, they were pretty obvious losses and it changed the way our O played, (2) I like Glowinski, but I think he could definitely be upgraded (I would still love to see B. Smith move to RG and somebody emerge as an elite RT), and (3) I think Nelson and Kelly are two of the top in the game at their positions, Castonzo has been very reliable but I don't think he is considered 'elite', and then I think Smith played very well at RT and Glowinski was good at RG, but currently I don't think either of them are much more than 'average' or 'slightly above average' in terms of position ranks throughout the NFL (I think Smith could move higher if moved back to RG, but as a T, I think there are quite a few in the NFL who are better than him). What I did really like last year was as a unit, the OL seemed to play (at least the back half of the season) greater than the sum of their parts. I'll be interested to see how they react to new coaches. A few of my major questions are: (1) Will Doyle be back healthy and to his old form, (2) What will we actually get from Funchess/Campbell/Cain, (3) How is the OL going to react to a new OL Coach (I assume positive and love we brought Mudd back, and really don't worry about Big Q going backwards), (4) Will TY be 100% (his ankle should have had plenty of time to heal in the off-season, but he's getting up towards 30 and I thought it showed clearly in the playoffs that he's not the same WR if his burners are slowed down), (5) Will Hines and Wilkins make any steps forward, (6) Will we stay healthy otherwise ? I'm optimistic about our O, and think with some added weapons at WR, we'll see Reich and Sirianni add some new wrinkles for Andrew to work with. Now, let's just hope we stay healthy.
  15. I appreciate what Inman did here, but there was a reason why we were able to sign him in the middle of the season. In 5 years in the league, he's had 12 catches, 35 catches, 58 catches, 50 catches and 28 catches. Not bad numbers, but he is also no superstar. A major part of the reason we brought him in was because Sirianni & Reich coached him in San Diego and knew he'd be able to come in and learn the system quickly. As you already stated, I think he's pretty low on the depth chart to start in New England. Not saying he won't make the team, but I don't see him making much impact in NE unless they get plagued with injuries. I certainly think Inman would have made our roster had we re-signed him, but I don't think he would be playing much of a factor in the offense if guys like Funchess and Campbell do what Reich thinks they can. Andrew Luck makes those around him a lot better, especially if given time to throw like last year. We were very thin at WR last year, in part due to injuries and in part due to lack of talent. As you and @Supermanhave discussed he isn't a great route runner and doesn't get great separation, so more likely than not he is catching contested balls. Inman is 6'3" and a big target with good hands. Funchess is a bigger target (6'4" and 20 lbs heavier) and a better athlete -- the knock on him has been inconsistent hands. I know it's nice to have big targets, but IMO, this offense will be built a lot on speed and we have plenty of it. Assuming Funchess and our TEs stay healthy, I don't know that we had much need for another big bodied WR who isn't terribly fast. Our WR group was very weak last year and got hit with some injuries. There is a reason why 31 other teams hadn't signed Inman until the middle of October. I agree, he was our 2nd best WR, but that isn't saying a whole lot considering who that bunch consisted of last year. We also probably would be better with Inman than without him (he would likely be an improvement to Rogers or whoever gets our last WR slot, but with the signing of Funchess, I imagine Inman wouldn't see a whole lot of the field this season). I agree with you here (though, I have a gut feeling that Campbell will move above Hines and Funchess above Doyle in terms of offensive production). I get the concern about sharing information about our schemes, but the amount of film preparation being done in the NFL these days, IMO, makes that a non-factor. Plus, if Campbell and Funchess turn out, and if Doyle's healthy, we're likely to be running a lot of different plays this year because we'll just have a lot more skill/athleticism on the field. Wayne and Inman both ran their 40 yard dashes in the mid 4.4 range -- they are both (well Reggie was) plenty faster than just fast enough. Inman was a little bigger than Reggie, but certainly didn't run perfect routes or routes close enough to be in the same category as Reggie. There is obviously something about Funchess that Reich loves. The only parts of Funchess' game which may not be as good or better than Inman are his straight line speed and his hands (though, as others have pointed out, Funchess catches everything in the slot, where I expect he'll be used often). I think this is a nice read and makes sense. https://www.1070thefan.com/blogs/kevins-corner/colts-coverage/how-much-have-colts-improved-wide-receiver-offseason -- Also points out that Inman had some drop issues before joining Indy. I haven't seen what Inman signed a deal for, but would like to know. At 2 years, $9 mil we got Hunt for pretty cheap. My guess on potential of why not bringing back Inman was either a too high of an asking price, or looking for a long term deal (can't blame him either way). After giving Funchess a pretty hefty 1 year deal, I imagine Ballard was not willing to invest heavily into another bigger WR like Inman, who would essentially be playing the same role as Funchess. I have also not seen who the other '4 teams at the table' with offers for Inman are... I know Ballard and Inman met several times early offseason and nothing came from it. For all we know, Inman threw a really high number out and * Ballard off and they decided to part ways after those meetings.
  16. Granted he missed 5 games last year, he was only 5th on the team in receptions (even if he hadn't missed 5 games, he still would've been 3rd most likely). At 6'3" 228 lbs with a 4.33 forty, 27 reps on bench press, and a 40.5 inch vertical he is going to be a match-up nightmare for most corners just based on his size, strength, speed and ability to jump. He also has good hands (he kind of reminds me a little of a stronger DHB who can also catch). I think you're right, he'll probably be used for the deep ball. Randy Moss wasn't as strong as this guy, but was quicker/more agile and they have similar speed. Randy made a living early in his career by running straight by people and outjumping them if he had to... as his career went on he became a more polished route-runner, but he was highly successful straight out of the gate primarily due to his speed, his height, ability to jump and good hands. Metcalf has the measurables to be a similar kind of deep threat. And yes, I was just reading the article on the front page of Colts.com -- Ballard said Reich and Sirianni will find ways to get production out of Campbell right away based solely on his athleticism and will continuously be working on developing on turning him into a true WR and route-runner.
  17. In a recent press conference, Ballard spoke very highly of Stewart and said he expects him to make a major leap this year. The thing with this D compared to the old Dungy D's, IMO, is we are a lot more athletic behind the front 4. Also, I think our DL is more well-versed than the Polian/Dungy-era. Freeney was a top-notch pass-rusher, but he was one of the worst DE's at stopping the run I have ever seen. I don't think we've seen enough from Turay yet to know if he's more than a 1 trick pony, but otherwise, I think all of our other DE's (while they/outside of Houston may not be elite pass rushers) can help stop the run better than Mathis and Freeney ever could. Keep in mind, an explosive offense plays a very key role in making the other offense 1-dimensional. Part of why Freeney/Mathis were so successful in getting sacks was because more often than not (especially on our home turf), we were playing with a lead because Peyton and Co. were putting points on the board. Teams playing with a lead can focus on pinning their ears back and hitting the QB, as the opposing run game is removed. I am very hopeful, with Luck's new weapons, that our O will figure out how to score early and often. If we can do that, it makes our run D much less of a concern because teams simply don't focus on establishing the run if they're down 14 points. Assuming Turay will make improvements in year 2, and with the addition of Houston, we are much more likely to see Lewis more on the inside. I don't think Lewis has a huge ceiling, but there were many plays I remember last year where it seemed like Lewis was just a step away from getting to the QB. I am hoping that is because he wasn't fully comfortable with NFL speed and because he was coming off an injury (I think a fairly serious toe injury), so he wasn't playing at full speed. If that's the case, I think he's gonna be just fine, especially with most of his reps coming from the interior. If it is just that he is actually one step too slow, I don't see him making much improvement from what we saw last year. Hooker was on his way to a pro-bowl year before injury derailed him as a rookie. Last year, PFF had him as the 14th ranked safety in the NFL (with an above average 79.7). He was used differently in the 'Flus scheme (he was mainly a center fielder as a rookie in a single-high role -- last year the cover 2 employed had him mainly in a double-high role with responsibility for only 1 half of the field). He didn't have the interception numbers last year, but he was also barely being thrown at because he was very effective at shutting his half of the field down. Additionally, I think Hooker was still recovering from knee injury a good chunk of last year (at least to me, he seemed to get faster or at least play faster as the season went on, which would be expected as an ACL is usually more than a full year to totally recover from). Here's a good article on Hooker: https://coltswire.usatoday.com/2019/03/05/indianapolis-colts-malik-hooker-player-review-2018/ I'm not an OSU fan, and have to see a lot more from Lewis before I get too high on him... but I think Hooker, quietly, had a very solid season last year and is living up to his hype.
  18. Ballard says it in the post-draft press conference. People undervalue the ability of a player to be versatile. He said that's what he liked with the Tell pick, is the guy should be able to play multiple positions on this defense and it's also what he likes about Quincy Wilson. We definitely got more athletic on defense during this draft and we now have multiple players who can be used interchangeably at different positions. I expect you're correct... we are now more athletic and many of our young players have more experience in this system. I think pass rush and coverage go hand in hand. Better coverage leads to more QB pressure and more QB pressure leads to the ball coming out of the QB's hand faster. It will be very fun to see if Turay and Lewis make significant progress in year 2, if so, with a healthy Justin Houston, I don't think there's any doubt that we'll be racking up more sacks this year from the DL. That, plus some more creativity from 'Flus should really help this defense pressure the QB and make plays. I think Luck showed us how good he really is last year. After Doyle went down, he made something from basically nothing with our receiving/TE corps (outside of TY and Ebron). TY gutted it out and played very well considering he had a high and low ankle sprain the last 7 games and into the playoffs. I really think TY's ankle was shot after the first half of the Texans game. He was definitely a few steps slower against KC, and it really exposed our offense, as outside of Ebron, Luck didn't have much to work with in the passing game. One pick which Ballard seems to be high on is Khari Willis. He is a similar player to Geathers, both thick guys and sound tacklers. I think Willis may be a little more natural in deep coverage than Geathers. I am fully expecting to see packages with Willis and Hooker in true S roles whereas Geathers is either shadowing the opposing TE or playing as a hybrid S/LB/dime CB. Hopefully, if I am right about this, we'll see much better coverage of TE's and short/intermediate passing. routes The nice thing, as I kind of alluded to above, is a lot of our CBs can play all over the field now (e.g., I think Rock is better suited outside, but Wilson and Desir are long and fast and can play outside or inside). I think we'll see some exotic D packages this year, and I imagine the guys on the field are going to be changing on a weekly basis depending on the matchups.
  19. Hooker had a heck of a year last year. He definitely seemed to improve as the year went on (and I think that was expected in a new scheme and coming off a major knee injury). Unfortunately, it seems like DBs who rack up a lot of INTs get more recognition for All-pro/Pro-bowl. Hooker did an exceptional job shutting down the middle of the field last year... if he does that again this year, he may have an exceptional year, but if teams don't throw at him, may lack the stats to get votes. As @ProblChld32 said, Reggie ran a 4.45 before the draft. He was a lot faster than most give him credit for.... People have high hopes for Campbell (rightfully so), but for now I think it's way pre-mature to call him elite. A few years back we had Moncrief, Dorsett and TY -- all 4.4 or under guys. They talked a lot in pre-season that they had some packages called the Indy 500 b/c they were so fast and would burn by defenses. TY is really the only one that did anything substantial from that group. I think Campbell will wind up being a better WR than Moncrief/Dorsett -- but until we see it, I'm not ready to say TY's got an elite speedster alongside him. I agree with this 100%. We ran a pretty vanilla defense last year -- I think for 2 reasons: (1) we were very young and unexperienced, and (2) we didn't have a lot of talent. We definitely deepened our talent across the roster this year and the young guys from last year are a year older (outside of Autry, Woods and Hunt, our main defensive contributors had 3 or less years of NFL experience). We definitely added some athletes to this roster in the off-season, so I think we'll see a much more intricate defensive scheme this year. On offense, I am excited that we tried to get some weapons for Luck to take pressure off TY. We got Luck protection last year, but with Doyle out hurt and TY playing with significant pain, Luck did a heckuva job elevating talent of others in the offense. I thought it was very apparent in the playoff loss to KC when TY was hobbling that our offense needed to add weapons. If Campbell, Cain, and Funchess pan out and if Doyle comes back healthy, Luck ought not have any lack of weapons with this group. I also like that he has a wide catch radius. It seems like his drops are what he gets knocked for, but if you look at the actual stats, he mainly drops balls that are right in his numbers and makes catches on balls away from his body. I think Luck will work very nicely with him.
  20. The nice thing with Campbell, like it was with Reggie, is he has a very good mentor to learn from. Ideally, we'll see Campbell develop closer to day 1 than year 3... but if it takes him a little while to turn from a freak athlete to a top notch WR, we'll likely be OK.
  21. Ware is talented if he's healthy and arguably our most talented back-up to Mack... however, Ware did miss the entire 2017 season w/ a knee injury and he only rushed for 246 yards last year (granted he was backing up Kareem Hunt most of the year prior to Hunt's release). Ballard said last year that he believes Mack can be a 1,200+ yard rushing season if he can stay healthy a full 16 game season. I agree with you that we can still win games without Mack, but if we really want to make a run through the playoffs, I don't see us doing it without a healthy Mack leading our backfield.
  22. Torn ACL's typically take over a year to fully recover from (though technology is improving).... Even last year, I thought Malik Hooker looked a little slow until sometime around the bye week. He played well, but whether it was mentally building confidence in the knee or the knee itself was still healing, I thought he seemed to improve as the year went on. I would expect the same from Cain -- in August, which is ~1 year from his injury, he'll start participating in contact drills/etc.... but it'll take a few months after that until he's really back at full speed.
  23. I would give the edge to Ebron right now strictly based on health. Ebron is also a better athlete and more of a receiving threat. Doyle is a better blocker and is reliable in short yard passing situations, but doesn't really seem to have the athleticism to put a ton of fear into defenses like Ebron can. They really are two totally different players. In my opinion, I think it's easier to replace a guy like Doyle than a guy like Ebron mainly due to raw athletic ability. Either way, I hope Doyle's hip recovers to a point where he is back to old form and can play a full season for us --- if so, we have one of (if not the) best TE Duo's in the NFL.
  24. Polian had some sort of personal connection with Kirk Ferentz from Iowa. He mentioned several times that kids coming out of Iowa are well trained and prepared for the NFL. Dallas Clark and Bob Sanders came from Iowa in 2003 and 2004 via draft by the Colts. Polian also mentioned he really trusted Coach Ferentz' opinion when he was evaluating players. Perhaps Ballard or one of Indy's staff members has some connection with Meyer or an assistant at OSU. Reich does mention when he talked to the position coach at OSU, he said Parris Campbell is the "kind of man I want my son to grow up to be like." The way Reich said it, you could tell he really valued the opinion of that specific coach. I wouldn't say he was ousted... he was promoted to Assistant Athletic Director. Ohio State is going to continue to be a powerhouse of D-1 College Football for the foreseeable future.
  25. https://www.colts.com/video/nfl-draft-day-3-willis-tell-iii-speed-green-barton-patterson He says it kiddingly, but somewhere in the NFL Draft Recap video, Ballard says we'll have a special package with 11 LBs standing up on D.
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