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[Breer] The Colts Are Quietly Winning the Offseason

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https://www.si.com/nfl/2019/05/20/colts-2019-offseason-chris-ballard-chris-long-retirement-patrick-peterson-suspension-mmqb

 

I'm not posting this one here for the Breer's praises of the team, but rather for the insight we can glean from Ballard. It's a good piece and I'd recommend a full read at the link above. 

 

I am posting some highlights here:

-Ballard is not a believer in momentum - every year starts anew. 

Quote

 “I don’t want us to be a momentum team. Every year you have the ability to say, ‘Man, we’re gonna start it over.’ And look, there’s so much noise in this league. It’s a noise-driven league. And I get it. But you’ve got to tune that out. And Frank and I have to do the best we can do, and Jim [Irsay] included, to help our football team continue to move forward.”

-The draft board for the Colts has been shrinking every year since Ballard got in the building. This year it was 170 players. Ballard says he wants to shrink it even more to about 120 players and that the more we shrink the board the better idea we have of what exactly we are looking for and what exactly a Colts player looks like:

Quote

"I think when we really get it right, and we get it down to about 125, 150, that’s when we’ll have really honed down exactly what a Colt is for our schemes."

“And not only from a player perspective, how he’s going to fit on the team, but also from a character perspective.”

-Ballard sees that happening due to getting more and more time to spend with the coaching staff and understanding what they need and value in players for our schemes:

Quote

“The longer you’re together with your staff and the more time you spend with them, the more you’re going to understand what they want,” Ballard continued. “At the end of the day, that’s our job. We’re not drafting for our egos. We’re drafting to find players for our coaches who fit their schemes and fit what they want. I think it just gets better each and every year.”

-Ballard confirms - we were deep into FA for 2 top tier FAs but the moment the bidding went above what we were willing to pay, we let them go. He also says that he won't spend just to spend. He wants to always have capspace, especially while still building(seems like he thinks we are still in the building stage of this roster construction). Says he wants to have capspace to sign our own players when their time comes and they've earned being rewarded.

Quote

“It’s important to be fiscally responsible, especially when you’re building it. You want to leave yourself flexibility for when these young players come due, so we’re able to take care of them and make them Colts for their careers.”

-Funchess was coaches' request and Houston was Ballard's addition due to the knowledge he had with him from when he worked in KC. 

Quote

Ballard’s belief, based on his knowledge of Houston’s health, is that the Colts will be able to get more out him with the help of Rusty Jones and the strength staff. Likewise, the hope is that Funchess can be the guy Ballard saw on tape in 2017 and early ’18.

-Ballard has long-term view of the roster!!! They are looking ahead for following year's drafts and assessing the potential strengths and weaknesses of future drafts. He thinks next year's draft will be stacked WR-wise: 

Quote

“We think next year’s receiver class is pretty good,” Ballard said, before doubling down. “It’s gonna be really good.”

-Colts were looking for speed on defense, something that's a prerequisite for our system and for a player that can affect 3d downs. Ballard says that player is Ben Banogu. IMO they have high hopes for him. Ballard on the linebackers:

Quote

 

"We wanted to make sure we added somebody who could affect third down—that was Banogu—and then also get more athletic ability and speed at linebacker,” said Ballard. “And look, Darius played great, Anthony Walker played good football for us last year and he’s a young player, as did Matt Adams, as did Zaire Franklin, the guys that we had. The young players played good football.

 

“But we totally revamped that position from just two years ago.”

 

-Ballard on Banogu and Okereke:

Quote

“We kept talking through Banogu and Okereke, it just got to the point where it was like, man, it’d be nice to get both of them,” Ballard said. “The draft’s funny. I mean, of course I pay attention to where people might take them and where they might go, but we never set our board on that. We set our board on how we see it for the Colts, and where we would take them and how they fit. It worked out for us.”

-Ballard seems proud of his FO and coaching staff and their ability to stay level-headed and accurately assess the state of the team - not getting too down and give up when we were 1-5 and not get too hyped with the way we finished the season:

Quote

“I don’t want us ever to get a feeling of, ‘Let’s exhale’ or ‘We’re where we need to be.’ There’s always room for improvement, there’s always room for growth. You have to question, you have to ask, you have to be willing to critique each other. That’s how you get real growth each and every year.”

 

Quote

“In this league, the sky is always falling. It just is,” Ballard said. “If you pay attention to it, it will absolutely gut your program out. And I think it goes both ways. Either the sky is falling, or you’re the greatest thing on earth. It doesn’t really matter. What matters is how we handle things internally.”

 

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Albert Breer has to make up for kissing Josh McDaniels' behind when he published that unsubstantiated "organizational structure" crap about the Colts. I lost respect for him when he said that. Remember this link??? I have not forgotten.

 

 

We, Colts fans, are pretty high on Ballard, regardless of whether Breer sings his praises or not. 

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1 hour ago, chad72 said:

Albert Breer has to make up for kissing Josh McDaniels' behind when he published that unsubstantiated "organizational structure" crap about the Colts. I lost respect for him when he said that. Remember this link??? I have not forgotten.

 

 

We, Colts fans, are pretty high on Ballard, regardless of whether Breer sings his praises or not. 

 

Getting Reich instead of McDaniels is probably the best thing that could have happened for the Colts.

 

 

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I'm not really digging all the attention the team has been getting. I want to lay low

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1 hour ago, chad72 said:

Albert Breer has to make up for kissing Josh McDaniels' behind when he published that unsubstantiated "organizational structure" crap about the Colts. I lost respect for him when he said that. Remember this link??? I have not forgotten.

 

 

We, Colts fans, are pretty high on Ballard, regardless of whether Breer sings his praises or not. 

 

Seriously, again?   It’s not Breer’s job to confirm the organizational structure of the Colts.   That’s what McDaniels put out.   THAT’S Who should be apologizing to the Colts.   Brewer simply reported what McDaniels said. 

 

How would anyone go about confirming  that anyway?   It’s one man’s opinion.   And the better the Colts do, the dumber McDaniels looks. 

 

The article glows and gushes about the Colts from first sentence to last sentence and you’re still not happy due to some perceived slight.   The only person who slighted the Colts is JM.   And hopefully we can repay him by beating his rear end for years to come.   Breer is fully on board the Colts bandwagon.   Read the whole story.   You’ll be a happy Colts fan.   I promise.

 

PS— thanks to Stiches for posting this as he did.   This story is required reading for every Colts fan. 

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47 minutes ago, IndyD4U said:

I'm not really digging all the attention the team has been getting. I want to lay low

 

Doesn't really matter.  You just plug away, regardless.  KC gets attention.  NE gets even more.  It's a part of success, and it means you're doing something right. So, I hope the Colts keep getting attention.

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57 minutes ago, CurBeatElite said:

 

Getting Reich instead of McDaniels is probably the best thing that could have happened for the Colts.

 

 

Absolutely, the Colts dodged a bullet on that one & all seems to have worked out for the best.

lol... I mean, where was Brian Decker at when we needed him to profile mcdaniels leadership qualities??? 

 

While Ballard has handled that mishap as well as possible, I still gotta question that initial hiring. How in the world were there NO red flags that he might pull a move like that??? I mean I wasn't surprised when it happened so can't really assume Ballard was either... lol...

 

anywho, it seems to have worked out for the best...

 

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1 minute ago, braveheartcolt said:

So Ballard sees the 2020 rookie WR class as stacked. Funchess got a one year deal. No pressure then Devin....

that's beauty about their focus on competition....it'll either bring out the best in them or they'll wilt. 

 

We'll find out soon enough. 

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2 hours ago, NewColtsFan said:

 

Seriously, again?   It’s not Breer’s job to confirm the organizational structure of the Colts.   That’s what McDaniels put out.   THAT’S Who should be apologizing to the Colts.   Brewer simply reported what McDaniels said. 

 

How would anyone go about confirming  that anyway?   It’s one man’s opinion.   And the better the Colts do, the dumber McDaniels looks. 

 

The article glows and gushes about the Colts from first sentence to last sentence and you’re still not happy due to some perceived slight.   The only person who slighted the Colts is JM.   And hopefully we can repay him by beating his rear end for years to come.   Breer is fully on board the Colts bandwagon.   Read the whole story.   You’ll be a happy Colts fan.   I promise.

 

PS— thanks to Stiches for posting this as he did.   This story is required reading for every Colts fan. 

Living well has always been the best revenge

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3 hours ago, IndyD4U said:

I'm not really digging all the attention the team has been getting. I want to lay low

You know you may be right.  Imagine how unglued and ferocious the attacks on Cleveland will be next year when they open 2-4.  Then the stress will mount up a great deal when it really shouldn't.  Reasonable expectations are when the fan faithful (like this message board) and local media are hyped, but the mainstream is busy preening over every action the mega-market teams make.  (examples: The endless LA Lakers stories for the team with the worst record in the NBA over the past half dozen years give or take is an example or the frenzy over Dallas for every sneeze or hiccup Jerry Jones makes).  Players listen to the mainstream and many get their value from their respect/support there and adopt those expectations.  It's human nature and many of us would do the same in their place.  Odell and his QB are in a media fight right now with Cowherd on Fox.  Cowherd LOVES it, it builds his brand.  I am not sure it helps anything in Cleveland for them all to be caught up in it. 

 

The Colts are working hard to find the right personalities/mentalities for this team in part to be able to discount and ignore outside garbage and focus on the job at hand.  We don't have any Social Media stars on this team.  Andrew Luck, who would likely be 100 times more popular if he played the brand-building media games and that would put raw cash in his pockets, but it wouldn't help his game, it wouldn't win late in the 4th Quarter and this team seems to be building for character almost above all else (perhaps it IS above all else).  If you said the Colts ranked all the players first based on that and then brought athleticism and positional fit just below, I would believe it.  And I think courage to overcome exhaustion and distraction in critical moments (I think it takes internal fortitude to battle through it when all seems lost or at risk) will serve this team very well.  

 

BUT...  we live in a new universe where media of all types, especially social media, rules the roost of today's culture.  No one is 100% immune to it.  Being built up is a way media can either claim they were geniuses to have predicted it, or in most cases, they can then use their own efforts to do so to tear people back down for ratings and $'s when someone succumbs to the pressure and false expectations.  

 

So some might scoff.. but I think you may be on to something.  It was better when no one was paying attention.  It took a big heavy burden completely away from the team.  Sort of like the Pacers when they lost Paul George and blew everyone away coming out of nowhere.  Even this year after losing Oladipo no one thought they could do anything and they finished strong.  If the Colts stumble out of the gate (as we tend to do) the merciless attacks will be legion   

 

Who needs that?  

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It is nigh on impossible to understand the impact on the team regarding the social media attention we (or any team for that matter) get. How will the players cope with being rated in the top 5 of most Power Rankings this season, compared to last year when we were commonly placed last or near to last? Or is it all irelevant?

 

Ballards considered words imdicate the latter.......

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5 hours ago, Nadine said:

Living well has always been the best revenge

 

Beautifully said!   Thank you!!   :thmup:

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15 hours ago, IndyD4U said:

I'm not really digging all the attention the team has been getting. I want to lay low

  I read (on the Pats fan forum), very little concern for the Colts. I think the question posed was; “ which team has the best chance to win 5 SBs”?

   Of course, many fans said the Pats but only 2 posters (out of 40-50 posters) said the Colts. Many picked KC, Philly, NO and even the Browns. If  that’s any indication of how that fanbase views the Colts, they are in for a surprise.

    We know the Patriots are probably going to be competitive but the gap could be closing. Of course, the Colts still have to earn it but I love the way this thing is getting built. 

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20 hours ago, IndyD4U said:

I'm not really digging all the attention the team has been getting. I want to lay low

 

I've seen this statement a few times around the board and I have to say I agree and disagree. The Colts have always been the underdog. Even during the manning era it took forever for the Colts to get true recognition. So we as fans have grown used to not being in the spotlight. 

 

But on the other hand, so many people want to see the Colts become the next NFL dynasty. And in order for that to happen this organization needs to get used to being in the spotlight. They need to get used to being praised all the time. They need to get to a place where it doesn't matter if people are talking to up or not. 

 

I am embracing this. Because being in the spotlight and being praised all the time comes with the territory of being an NFL dynasty... so happy Ballard is the man running the show. He understands that outside noise is just that. Noise. 

 

And as a fan for the last 16 years I'm going to eat this up. 

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21 hours ago, chad72 said:

Albert Breer has to make up for kissing Josh McDaniels' behind when he published that unsubstantiated "organizational structure" crap about the Colts. I lost respect for him when he said that. Remember this link??? I have not forgotten.

 

 

We, Colts fans, are pretty high on Ballard, regardless of whether Breer sings his praises or not. 

 

 I would think JM would have wanted to have serious amounts of roster control.

That therefore might have given some pause. No way did NE want to compete against him.

 

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43 minutes ago, NannyMcafee said:

 

I've seen this statement a few times around the board and I have to say I agree and disagree. The Colts have always been the underdog. Even during the manning era it took forever for the Colts to get true recognition. So we as fans have grown used to not being in the spotlight. 

 

But on the other hand, so many people want to see the Colts become the next NFL dynasty. And in order for that to happen this organization needs to get used to being in the spotlight. They need to get used to being praised all the time. They need to get to a place where it doesn't matter if people are talking to up or not. 

 

I am embracing this. Because being in the spotlight and being praised all the time comes with the territory of being an NFL dynasty... so happy Ballard is the man running the show. He understands that outside noise is just that. Noise. 

 

And as a fan for the last 16 years I'm going to eat this up. 

 

Very good point made.

 

The underdog role has been our "fuel". It's easy to get complacent and feel like you've got it wrapped up once all the talking heads start giving you W's before you even step on the practice field.

 

I too am glad Ballard and Reich are here to keep the young guys focused.

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Not sure what Breer is drinking these days but I might guess he's abusing the beverage thats almost spelled like his name. Lol 

Best offseason?

I like the Houston and not against the Funchess signings but don't think along with our draft that our off season is the best of all the teams.

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Great stuff as usual, @stitches. Ballard is building a team as I like it, through the draft and without overly spending in free agency. I've never been a fan of spending on free agents outside the organization. 

 

Anyhow, other teams' fans want their favorite teams to emulate what the Colts have done. The Jets SB Nation site has a good piece on how Ballard has built the Colts. One area the writer mentions is the value that Ballard has placed on second round picks. I thought it was a good read. 

 

https://www.ganggreennation.com/2019/5/21/18631702/the-colts-provide-the-jets-with-a-great-model-to-turn-things-around

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20 hours ago, LJpalmbeacher2 said:

but don't think along with our draft that our off season is the best of all the teams.

 

Who had better?

 

Who had the best?

 

Who are your top 10?

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On 5/20/2019 at 3:56 PM, braveheartcolt said:

So Ballard sees the 2020 rookie WR class as stacked. Funchess got a one year deal. No pressure then Devin....

I wonder what that means for Hilton.  Will 2020 be his last year in Indy?  If Campbell and Cain develop nicely, and a solid WR is drafted next year, that could be the end of Hilton's time here

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4 hours ago, Lucky Colts Fan said:

 

Who had better?

 

Who had the best?

 

Who are your top 10?

 

So your saying wirh Houston, Funchess and no picks in 1st round we had the best??

 

Not researching all teams offseason but just going off top of my head I'd say Raiders, Pats had a very good draft. Jags got a SB mvp qb. Browns got the most talented wr in nfl.

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1 minute ago, LJpalmbeacher2 said:

Not researching all teams offseason

 

You do this every year.

 

You throw out an opinion on the Colts offseason without a reference point to compare it to.  The Colts Free Agency is never good enough for you, but compared to what?  The Colts Draft is never good enough for you, but compared to what?  You only know the Colts offseason, and not the other 31 teams, so you have no point of reference other than what you think the Colts should have done.

 

If you want to talk comparatively, the Colts have had some pretty good offseasons under Ballard compared to the other 31 teams.  But if you just want to talk about what you think they should have done, I'm guessing none of the 32 teams have good offseasons.

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On 5/20/2019 at 10:36 AM, stitches said:

Ballard has long-term view of the roster!!! They are looking ahead for following year's drafts and assessing the potential strengths and weaknesses of future drafts. He thinks next year's draft will be stacked WR-wise: 

  Quote

“We think next year’s receiver class is pretty good,” Ballard said, before doubling down. “It’s gonna be really good.”

 

 

Sorry,  been meaning to respond to this point with a reminder.    One year ago,  Ballard was talking about the 19 draft by raving about the DL class we all just saw get drafted.    So, I personally wouldn't read too much into his observatin that the wide receiver class looks very good.    Ballard almost passed over the entire DL class,  and didn't address the OL class until R7.    Even as late as the week of the draft, Ballard stated that the Colts would always pay close attention to both lines.  Then he turned around and almost avoided them.

 

As for next year's great WR class?   Maybe we take one in R1?    Maybe.   Or maybe R2?    Or R3?  Maybe.

 

But I also read his comment as a subtle message to players like TY and Funchess and Rodgers and the 27 other nameless, faceless WR's who are also on our roster.   That they shouldn't price themselves off the roster next year when looking for their next contract.    That they should played their best or they could easily be replaced.   Ballard doesn't do anything with a heavy hand.   But he's not above a little subtle messaging to those who might need a reminder.

 

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On 5/22/2019 at 2:37 PM, Lucky Colts Fan said:

 

You do this every year.

 

You throw out an opinion on the Colts offseason without a reference point to compare it to.  The Colts Free Agency is never good enough for you, but compared to what?  The Colts Draft is never good enough for you, but compared to what?  You only know the Colts offseason, and not the other 31 teams, so you have no point of reference other than what you think the Colts should have done.

 

If you want to talk comparatively, the Colts have had some pretty good offseasons under Ballard compared to the other 31 teams.  But if you just want to talk about what you think they should have done, I'm guessing none of the 32 teams have good offseasons.

 

There you go again with your argumentative homer bias rants. Lol

 

The Raiders acquired WR's Antonio Brown & Tyrell Williams.... T Trent Brown ... S Joyner plus 3 First Round picks DE Ferrell, best rated RB Josh Jacobs and S Abram!!!

 

The Brownies added to a already stacked team the most talented WR OBJ..... Olivea Vernon... Sheldon Richardson... star RB Kareem Hunt and drafted possibly the best CB Greedy Williams.

 

Jets added RB Leveon Bell.... CJ Mosley... twice pro bowler G Osmele and 3rd overalk pick DT Quin Williams.

 

I'm not even going to mention pats moves/draft caus I hate them but it was good.

 

It's not the end of the world(for colt fans) if in May the Colts didn't win the off season OR if Warner doesn't include Luck on his Top 5 list......unless of course the Colt fan is YOU! haha

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On 5/23/2019 at 9:36 PM, LJpalmbeacher2 said:

There you go again with your argumentative homer bias rants. Lol

 

It's not the end of the world(for colt fans) if in May the Colts didn't win the off seasonOR if Warner doesn't include Luck on his Top 5 list......unless of course the Colt fan is YOU! 

 

Am I a homer?  Yes.

 

Did I say the Colts had the best offseason this year?  No.  (It's too early to say one way or another)

 

Since we now have the results of this past season to judge last years offseason, is it safe to say that the Colts had the best offseason last year?  Yes.  (An offseason you were critical of at this time last year)

 

We'll have to see how this season turns out before we decide who had the best offseason this year.  (But if you wanna crown the Raiders, then crown 'em  :P)

 

:hat:

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2 hours ago, Lucky Colts Fan said:

 

Am I a homer?  Yes.

 

Did I say the Colts had the best offseason this year?  No.  (It's too early to say one way or another)

 

Since we now have the results of this past season to judge last years offseason, is it safe to say that the Colts had the best offseason last year?  Yes.  (An offseason you were critical of at this time last year)

 

We'll have to see how this season turns out before we decide who had the best offseason this year.  (But if you wanna crown the Raiders, then crown 'em  :P)

 

:hat:

...and we let them off the hook. :) 

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I think most of us are thinking Ballard will strike again with this years draft, which is probably wishful thinking. We are also lapping up the 'good dressing room character' philisophy and the 'build from within culture'. Whilst good on paper, we may be getting carried away. 

 

But with Luck tucked up our sleeve, it could all just land perfectly. It' s good to dream, is it not.....

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 Ssuper Bowl in Miami? Check.  Media jumping on our bandwagon finally? Check. Irsay spotted at Bilderberg? We shall see.

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