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Without Charlie Johnson, the Colts MUST Sign Free Agents on the Offensive Line


bayone
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The whole reason Peyton Manning took less money was to ensure the Colts could sign their own and improve the offensive line after an ugly season. I would imagine that he thought the Colts were intent on fortifying the line and I am pretty sure he was planning on having Johnson around..

Early indications of the drafting of Castonzo and Ijalana indicated the Colts were serious about finding solutions. A starting offensive line of Castonzo, McClendon, Saturday, Ijalana and Johnson was beginning to look very promising. Given Peyton's quick release time - something that would really help cover for rookie mistakes - the Colts line could have quickly developed into a strength by midseason or earlier.

Now? Questions abound. How the Colts let Johnson get away is a total mystery. Indy is famous for rewarding its own and Johnson has been as loyal as any, playing all 73 career games for the Colts and starting the last 54. More importantly, Johnson was versatile, anchoring four positions on the line when injury demanded him to do so.

For a team that thrives on continuity and especially given how poor the rest of the line was last year, Johnson heading to Minnesota is devastating. This latest departure may be remembered as "the one that got away," a key cog in the line who Peyton trusted to protect his blindside.

Just like that, the Colts line is once again the Colts' biggest question mark heading into the offseason for - I don't know - the 19th straight year. This posting was originally going to be about what corners the Colts could add, now it will focus on what linemen the Colts NEED.

Let's hope the Colts have a replacement up their sleeve. Fortunately there are several good right tackles still unsigned.

There is also Max Starks & Flozsell Adams for stop gap measures

REST are discussed in detail in article

Alex Barron, formerly with the Dallas Cowboys:

At 6'8'' 318, Barron is a big boy. Now that Johnson has bolted, the Colts may be willing to pay the higher price.

Ryan Harris, formerly with the Denver Broncos:

A product of Notre Dame, Ryan Harris has developed into an upper-tier offensive lineman for the Broncos. Know for his run blocking, Harris is more than adequate in the passing game and would be a great fit opposite Castonzo at the right tackle spot.

Jeremy Trueblood, formerly with the Tampa Bay Bucs:

Trueblood has an intimidating vampire like name to go along with his intimidating aggressive play. Born in Indianapolis, playing for the Colts would be a homecoming for Trueblood who has played his first four seasons in Tampa Bay. Trueblood is alsNot only is Trueblood a physical power tackle who would protect Manning while also opening larger holes for Addai (do we need that...), o an extremely durable player having missed only two games (both last year) in four years. Given that our offensive line always seems to be hurt and guys shuffled in and out (a reason why Johnson was so valuable), Trueblood's presence would add a strong continuity to the unit. Like Harris, the Colts should be able to convince Trueblood to protect Manning for the rest of number 18's career, were he to sign with Indy. For an offensive lineman, there is no higher honor (another reason why Johnson leaving is strange).

Chester Pitts/ Sean Locklear formerly both of the Seattle Seahawks:

Both players are over 30 so neither is a long term option.

* Jared Gaither, formerly with the Baltimore Ravens:

Gaither is already in talks with Oakland Raiders, The Colts were interested in Gaither last season and there were even rumors of trade talks. Nothing happened. Oakland is the clear front runner, but if anyone can screw up a good thing its Al Davis and the Raiders.

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I would be curious to know what the difference in compensation was between what the Colts were offering and what he got from the Vikings.

all i know is whatever we gave Diem, we should have thrown to CJ Plus more

Peyton said before signing he was willing to take less so we could resign our players & other FA, he wnted that understood and he mentioned Addai & CJ by name as only 2 named

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In either case, I will be upset and baffled if Johnson signed a reasonable deal with the Vikings, the Colts had the money to afford paying him, and Indianapolis does not use that free money to make an improvement to their current roster.

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so the defensive line is still a big questionmark, safety as well, depth at the linebacker position also and now we are opening again holes in our offensive line that should have been fixed long time ago. i loved the draft but i hate the pre season so far. and we probably aren't signing any free agent. I don't get that strategy. but maybe I'm just a dumb person...

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Bayone this is not directed at you but what a load of manure that article is.

The entire premise is ridiculously flawed. A "line of Castonzo, McClendon, Saturday, Ijalana, & CJ looked promising." What?!?! Two rookies who may be able to play, a 2nd year guy who only lined up as a tight end last year, an aging Saturday and CJ who would have switched positions. While I suppose it was possible that particular line up would have been the one the Colts go with, I think saying that it looked promising before any of them had even practiced together one freaking time is just a touch premature.

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completely agree. Diem should have been gone and CJ signed. I don't understand that move at all

Polians track record on offensive line decisions like this lately are not very good. I didn't like this decision either. They let Lilja go and he had a very good year in KC. If he wanted outrageous money i could learn to accept it, if he didn't then i have a huge problem with it.

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Bayone this is not directed at you but what a load of manure that article is.

The entire premise is ridiculously flawed. A "line of Castonzo, McClendon, Saturday, Ijalana, & CJ looked promising." What?!?! Two rookies who may be able to play, a 2nd year guy who only lined up as a tight end last year, an aging Saturday and CJ who would have switched positions. While I suppose it was possible that particular line up would have been the one the Colts go with, I think saying that it looked promising before any of them had even practiced together one freaking time is just a touch premature.

The premise may be off But CJ was a valuable & interchangeable cog, Peyton in willing to sign for less noted it was to sign addai, CJ , other colts and other FA agents, I wonder how he feels

I see I already said that, SORRY , I am upset at this loss

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The premise may be off But CJ was a valuable & interchangeable cog, Peyton in willing to sign for less noted it was to sign addai, CJ , other colts and other FA agents, I wonder how he feels

I see I already said that, SORRY , I am upset at this loss

CJ had a higher value of himself than the Colts did. Even if Manning took less to keep him around, his asking price still needed to be reasonable - in other words, on the Colts' terms. It clearly was not and he did well for himself in Minny. I say good for him.

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so the defensive line is still a big questionmark, safety as well, depth at the linebacker position also and now we are opening again holes in our offensive line that should have been fixed long time ago. i loved the draft but i hate the pre season so far. and we probably aren't signing any free agent. I don't get that strategy. but maybe I'm just a dumb person...

you are definitely not a dumb person...you hit the nail on the head. i cant believe how many people on this forum are such homers. some people here honestly think we can win 12-13 games next season with the defense we currently have. colts finished 20th last season in total defense, i would not be surprised if they finished 30th...especially if freeney or mathis goes down with an injury.

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CJ had a higher value of himself than the Colts did. Even if Manning took less to keep him around, his asking price still needed to be reasonable - in other words, on the Colts' terms. It clearly was not and he did well for himself in Minny. I say good for him.

I do agree i would love to see what Vikings paid him, Wonder what he may have settled for to stay a Colt if had any loyalty with some price discount & if Diems salary added to offer for him would of helped,

I liked session but Jags way overpaid for him & understand letting him go

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you are definitely not a dumb person...you hit the nail on the head. i cant believe how many people on this forum are such homers. some people here honestly think we can win 12-13 games next season with the defense we currently have. colts finished 20th last season in total defense, i would not be surprised if they finished 30th...especially if freeney or mathis goes down with an injury.

We finished 20th last season with half our starting defense injured. 3/4 of it was on IR, plus a key backup who started all of 2009. We started Aaron Francisco 12 games. Gary Brackett missed 4 games. Clint Session missed 11 games. And so on. If nothing else, we'll be alright by virtue of the fact that we should be healthy, or at least not as banged up as we were last year.

And that's before you mention that Moala, Angerer, Conner, Powers, etc., should all be better with another year under their belts.

And I love how anytime anyone doesn't see the world as being quite as dark as you do, they must be a homer.

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1. That writer needs to check his facts, Trueblood already re-signed with the Bucs.

2. I'm starting to believe that StampedeBlue should change their name to, "PANIC, OH GOD PANIC"

thanks, this writer isn't big blue and the 3 previous articles person had written defended colts off season patience and was suddenly discouraged & turned off from how i read the beginning of the entire article

Big Blue I know is really a Polian basher

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I think the Colts made the right move in letting him go. We have plenty of offensive line, and unless he was playing a guard spot I didn't wanna see him playing a tackle spot anymore.

Hed help school Castonzo, play RG or rt till Ijalana is capable, though probably would of started season instead of Cast as right now Linback looks like he will be protecting a post op Manning

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Bayone this is not directed at you but what a load of manure that article is.

The entire premise is ridiculously flawed. A "line of Castonzo, McClendon, Saturday, Ijalana, & CJ looked promising." What?!?! Two rookies who may be able to play, a 2nd year guy who only lined up as a tight end last year, an aging Saturday and CJ who would have switched positions. While I suppose it was possible that particular line up would have been the one the Colts go with, I think saying that it looked promising before any of them had even practiced together one freaking time is just a touch premature.

bayone..this guy is just a hater..i agree completely! idk what people want from our line (5 anthony munoz would b nice but it aint happenin)..that would b the most ideal o-line..yeah mayb having 2 rookie linemen isnt "ideal" but they are as good as rookies can be coming into the league and getting drafted w the #22nd overall pick (and dont say "well we dont know yet", u gotta have some sort of idea if you have studied these 2)..now instead we have diem @ RT and i hope he can regain some of his old form but i got a feeling that when its all said and done its gonna be a mess..i like what we have as far as depth tho and knowing how the colts can move guys around i think we may just b ok..i may b optimistic here but im still more worried about the Dline than the Oline

the only 2 tackles i would say we go for would b gaither first..harris second

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I think the Colts made the right move in letting him go. We have plenty of offensive line, and unless he was playing a guard spot I didn't wanna see him playing a tackle spot anymore.

yeah but think about next year when the rookies are seasoned and you can put CJ anywhere in the lineup or someone goes down n u got a 50 game starter u can plug into the tackle positions..he woulda been a hugh luxury!

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yeah but think about next year when the rookies are seasoned and you can put CJ anywhere in the lineup or someone goes down n u got a 50 game starter u can plug into the tackle positions..he woulda been a hugh luxury!

Thats how I feel

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And I can't believe how many people on this forum are haters and disbelievers.

Very true. I hate seeing the Colts wait around with FA signings, but we always come out on top. Polian and Irsay must know what they are doing. I liked CJ for guard, not tackle. Diem is aging, but has been around as long as I can remember.

And Moala is going to be a beast, just watch.

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-- Ijalana, Ben OG 6-4 317 R Villanova D2a-11

73 Thomas, Jaimie OG 6-4 330 2 Maryland D7b-09

65 McClendon, Jacques OG 6-3 324 2 Tennessee D4-10

66 DeVan, Kyle OG 6-2 306 3 Oregon State FA-09

78 Pollak, Mike OG 6-3 301 4 Arizona State D2-08

61 Richard, Jamey OG 6-5 295 4 Buffalo D7-08

-- Castonzo, Anthony OT 6-7 305 R Boston College D1-11

72 Linkenbach, Jeff OT 6-6 311 2 Cincinnati FA-10

75 Toudouze, Michael OT 6-6 303 4 TCU FA-10

71 Diem, Ryan OT 6-6 320 11 Northern Illinois D4-01

76 Reitz, Joe OT 6-7 320 1 Western Michigan FA-10

60 Williams, James OT 6-5 295 1 Harvard FA-10

-- Tepper, Mike OT 6-6 323 1 California FA-11

-- Bender, Casey OT 6-5 295 1 South Dakota State FA-11

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So what are we gonna put on our offensive line?

mike pollak?

jeff linkenbach?

Two unproved rookies?

michael toudouze?

jamey richard?

We've seen most of these guys, sans the rookies, play, and if you don't remember just how ugly it was you have the strongest selective memory I've ever come across...

Seriously... Name me one proven starting quality offensive linemen on our roster not named Jeff Saturday. (And with as much as Saturday gets moved around by D-linemen anymore I think his status as a quality starter is questionable at the absolute very best.)

We'd might as well be putting up inflatable children's punching bags in front of Peyton at this point... They'll give the same amount of resistance as most of our O-linemen will...

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So what are we gonna put on our offensive line?

mike pollak?

jeff linkenbach?

Two unproved rookies?

michael toudouze?

jamey richard?

We've seen most of these guys, sans the rookies, play, and if you don't remember just how ugly it was you have the strongest selective memory I've ever come across...

Seriously... Name me one proven starting quality offensive linemen on our roster not named Jeff Saturday. (And with as much as Saturday gets moved around by D-linemen anymore I think his status as a quality starter is questionable at the absolute very best.)

We'd might as well be putting up inflatable children's punching bags in front of Peyton at this point... They'll give the same amount of resistance as most of our O-linemen will...

Oh. I see we've re-signed Kyle DeVan. So there's one, giving us a total of two quality starters.

Out of 5.

Not good odds, relying on players who have shown they can't do it in the past, and players who have yet to prove they can do it...

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CJ had a higher value of himself than the Colts did. Even if Manning took less to keep him around, his asking price still needed to be reasonable - in other words, on the Colts' terms. It clearly was not and he did well for himself in Minny. I say good for him.

I agree, I wish CJ would have stayed simply because of his versatility. But some are acting like we just lost Anthony Munoz? CJ did not dominate at any position, his value to the team was only in his versatility.

If Costanzo and BI live up to their promise CJ will be an afterthought by week 8.

I am thrilled the Colts shelled out money for DE/DT that can actually play. The O will be fine regardless of who is on the OL. The D is where the upgrades really need to happen. If the D is getting off the field Peyton's job becomes 100x easier.

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bayone..this guy is just a hater..i agree completely! idk what people want from our line (5 anthony munoz would b nice but it aint happenin)..that would b the most ideal o-line..yeah mayb having 2 rookie linemen isnt "ideal" but they are as good as rookies can be coming into the league and getting drafted w the #22nd overall pick (and dont say "well we dont know yet", u gotta have some sort of idea if you have studied these 2)..now instead we have diem @ RT and i hope he can regain some of his old form but i got a feeling that when its all said and done its gonna be a mess..i like what we have as far as depth tho and knowing how the colts can move guys around i think we may just b ok..i may b optimistic here but im still more worried about the Dline than the Oline

the only 2 tackles i would say we go for would b gaither first..harris second

I am only a hater of mindless, irrational nonsense.

As far as Castonzo and Ijalana goes, they really don't have a clue yet if those guys can play. When San Diego drafted Leaf # 2 in the draft, do you think they thought he could play. Do you think that the Jets thought Gholston could play when they drafted him 6th overall? The league is filled with guys who projected well but turned out to be busts. Not saying that will be the case with either Colts pick but absolutely think that saying the ideal line will have both those guys when they had not even practiced once is just a touch premature.

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Anybody know what the Vikings paid for him? I can't find anything about his contract with them, so if someone has a link to those figures, please post it.

Losing players sucks...especially an experienced, if not great LT. But I gotta see what the Vikings paid him before I get all wrapped around the axle about losing him.

With Mathis and Wayne wanting retooled deals...even with Peyton taking "less money"...there were going to be cap casualties with the rollback to 2009 cap numbers.

That's the cold reality.

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