I've been touting 2020 as "the year" for a while now. I might be a year too early, but in watching the league this year one thing has struck me: there aren't any truly "elite" teams out there. Yes some are better than others, but IMHO the difference between the top and the bottom isn't as great as it used to be. The Colts are clearly among the average teams, so I think with another shrewd draft (and that Skins round 2 pick sure looks good!) and a couple of impact FA's, I think this team can contend next year. And Mr. Brady isn't going to be around much longer either.
Agree 100% on Willis from a box perspective. He'll be very good if that's where they focus him. On Okereke, he gets swallowed up easily vs the run. I just don't see that improving a lot with his build. He came from one of the best strength programs in D1, so I just think he's topped out in that space as well. I think that's why they're trying him out in the SAM space.
I think Rock will be fine. Most of his errors are "rookie" type errors you can expect being tossed into the deep end. Physically he's fine. I think the mental part will catch up.
That is exactly why the Colts are what they are and teams like the Patriots are a dynasty. That emotional attachment did not serve Irsay well during the Pagano & Griggson era...did it? He lost a franchise quarterback as a net result of all of this misplaced attachment because stayed too long with Griggson and Pagano who could not keep Luck out of harm’s way.
Vinny is a legend who has great exploits on his resume. We get it. However, I’d argue that most of his greatness was earned wearing another team’s uniform...the Patriots. He kicked them to 3 Super Bowl titles compared to one in Indy. He made his name and reputation with the Patriots. Sure he has played for the Colts longer but his formulative and most accomplished years were spent in New England. And still Belichick had no problem letting him walk in 2005 when he perceived it to be in the best interest of the Patriots. If Vinatieri was stinking it up like this with the Pats this year he would surely be gone by now...and wisely so. But Ballard, Reich and Irsay are led by the heart strings (as you imply) and as a result the team suffers on the field. It’s a bad message sent to the rest of the team. Certain players can under perform and be rewarded solely on the basis of who they are and what they have achieved in the past. While others are held accountable for poor play. It’s a double standard that eats away at that locker room “culture” that Ballard supposedly values so much. Well...we are no longer living in the past and the present day Adam Vinatieri is a liability on the field to this football team. A liability that teams like the Colts choose to live with to their detriment. That’s not admirable...it is downright foolish in my opinion.
Yeah, I’ve been very pleasantly surprised by Willis. Seems to make solid plays most weeks, looked good against Miami. Good closing speed, good instincts.
Also, I know it usually takes longer for CB’s to adjust and it’s way too early to know what we have in him, but I’m in wait and see mode with Rock. Not that I don’t think he can become a capable starter, which I guess is all we can ask for, just won’t be surprised if he doesn’t hit those sky high expectations some had for him. Happy Tell has looked good though, in the small sample size we’ve seen.