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Who was the biggest winner from Colts OTAs and minicamp?


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Who was the biggest winner from Colts OTAs and minicamp?

by Jerry Trotta

 

The Indianapolis Colts are officially in summer vacation mode. With mandatory minicamp concluding on Thursday, players, coaches and trainers will go their separate ways before reuniting in late July for training camp.

What organized team activities and minicamp lack in intensity they make up for in providing clarity to roster battles and highlighting which players have momentum on their side in terms of making the roster. On the flip side, however, these practices give insight into players who have an uphill climb to make the team.

But what about players who are already cemented as starters or key role players? What do they have to gain from OTAs and minicamp? With an extremely deep roster, there was no shortage of Colts players who entered summer break as big-time winners from spring practices.

Between Nyheim Hines, Bobby Okereke, Parris Campbell and rookie safety Nick Cross, it’s tough to say who emerged as the Colts’ biggest winner. If we had to pick somebody, though, we’d give the cake to cornerback Isaiah Rodgers.

Colts DB Isaiah Rodgers is poised for a breakout year in 2022.

Rodgers was all the rage throughout OTAs and minicamp. After earning the most playing time of his career in 2021, Rodgers continued to showcase his elite ball skills and ability to change direction on a dime to keep up with Indy’s receivers. As a result, the young DB proved to be a headache for Matt Ryan by breaking up passes left and right.

The competition between Rodgers and veteran Brandon Facyson is shaping up to be the most compelling roster battle in training camp, and it’s fair to say Rodgers has the inside track after his sublime OTAs and minicamp.

Following the departures of Xavier Rhodes and Rock Ya-Sin, who was surprisingly offloaded in the trade for Yannick Ngakoue, there’s a path for Rodgers to claim the starting spot opposite free-agent pickup Stephon Gilmore.

In 2021, Rodgers posted 49 tackles, seven passes defended, three interceptions and a 71.0 coverage grade from Pro Football Focus that ranked second on the defense behind Ya-Sin for players who logged at least 500 snaps.

A natural playmaker, Rodgers’ role in Matt Eberflus’ defense increased as we got deeper into the season last year. In fact, the 2020 sixth-round pick played nearly 80% of the snaps over the final three games.

If he continues this level of play into training camp, he could be in for that big of a workload on a permanent basis in Gus Bradley’s defense

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Good to hear that Rodgers did so well. I had seen his name cropping up, but most of the noise from OTAs was on the offensive side and singing Campbell's praises.

If our secondary holds up well, this defense is going to be NASTY. Give Yannick and Buckner time, those 2 alone will wreak absolute havoc on an O-Line. Add in a budding Paye / Odeyingbo as well and this defense is gonna fly.

And all of that will just give Leonard / Okereke / Speed more time and ability to float around and cause even more trouble.

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It's a tie for between Rodgers and Campbell. Rodgers seems ready to finally be a regular starter. As for Campbell, the talent has never been in question so his connection so far from Ryan is great to see. I'd be happy if Campbell could play 12 games and get 600 yards and 4 tds

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6 minutes ago, CR91 said:

It's a tie for between Rodgers and Campbell. Rodgers seems ready to finally be a regular starter. As for Campbell, the talent has never been in question so his connection so far from Ryan is great to see. I'd be happy if Campbell could play 12 games and get 600 yards and 4 tds

I would absolutely love to see Campbell make it the entire season, and even get CPOY. Dude has all the talent in the world.

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1 hour ago, TaylorTheStudMuffin said:

Rogers is a fun dude. He has such a fun personality. Hopefully he gets extended after this season.

 

He's gonna be waiting. JT is gonna be priority after this year followed by Pitt. 

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1 hour ago, CR91 said:

 

He's gonna be waiting. JT is gonna be priority after this year followed by Pitt. 

JT and Pitt both will be a priority but i don't think rogers will have to wait.  Those moderate priced players often get signed early so the teams know how they have to structure the top priced players.  The amounts and guarantees will be the same but the timing for cap purposes can be different.

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Campbell got the most mentions overall and on O.

Rodgers the most on D. 

Ryan was talked about a lot too, probably more than Rodgers.

 

But OTAs are more or less a passing camp. No contact, so not much half of the team can do to get mentions. 

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6 hours ago, Fluke_33 said:

JT and Pitt both will be a priority but i don't think rogers will have to wait.  Those moderate priced players often get signed early so the teams know how they have to structure the top priced players.  The amounts and guarantees will be the same but the timing for cap purposes can be different.

 

It's not that simple. Moore's contract is up the same time Rodgers is. Not to mention we still have to re-sign Nelson

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29 minutes ago, CR91 said:

 

It's not that simple. Moore's contract is up the same time Rodgers is. Not to mention we still have to re-sign Nelson

 

Yup, it's never that simple. But he is correct in that middle guys typically get wrapped up early. So do some of the high level guys. 

 

IMO, we've got a lot of bills coming due. Haven't dove in and done the math yet, but guessing we won't have all the stars back next season. Simply can't pay everyone the big bucks. Of course the draft will factor a lot. 

 

Here's a look at some of the starters/contributors that are FAs in 2023

  • Ngakoue
  • Nelson
  • Campbell
  • Okereke
  • Dulin
  • Lewis
  • Facyson
  • Pryor
  • McLeod
  • Blankenship

There's several other guys, but the above are all guys that will either be starting or getting a ton of reps.

 

And here's a look at guys in contract years after this season

  • Gilmore
  • Moore
  • Pittman
  • Taylor
  • Stewart
  • Sanchez
  • Blackman
  • Pinter
  • Rodgers
  • Patmon

 

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1 hour ago, EastStreet said:

 

Yup, it's never that simple. But he is correct in that middle guys typically get wrapped up early. So do some of the high level guys. 

 

IMO, we've got a lot of bills coming due. Haven't dove in and done the math yet, but guessing we won't have all the stars back next season. Simply can't pay everyone the big bucks. Of course the draft will factor a lot. 

 

Here's a look at some of the starters/contributors that are FAs in 2023

  • Ngakoue
  • Nelson
  • Campbell
  • Okereke
  • Dulin
  • Lewis
  • Facyson
  • Pryor
  • McLeod
  • Blankenship

There's several other guys, but the above are all guys that will either be starting or getting a ton of reps.

 

And here's a look at guys in contract years after this season

  • Gilmore
  • Moore
  • Pittman
  • Taylor
  • Stewart
  • Sanchez
  • Blackman
  • Pinter
  • Rodgers
  • Patmon

 

That’s sobering. 

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9 minutes ago, Hoose said:

That’s sobering. 

 

Yup. Not pushing the panic button or anything at this time, just saying we have a ton of moving parts. 

But that's 14 of 22 likely starters this season. 

 

We know Nelson will likely set the market at OG so long as he stays healthy. 

Ngakoue will likely do well this season alongside Defo and Paye.

 

Gotta hope Raimann is the future, although Pryor really isn't that expensive (now). If he becomes a high grading lock down guy, we'll have a decision to make. 

 

And it's likely our entire starting secondary will be looking for new contracts over the next two years. Hope Rodgers is up to the challenge, and Cross develops quickly. IMO, our starting Ss in week one will likely be McLeod and Cross, so we'll see what we have early. 

 

And the situation might be another reason to draw a hard line with Moore. I'm getting closer to be willing to roll the dice with Gilmore, Facyson, and Rodgers... and trade Moore. I'd prefer he played this season though at least. If he's a total PIA though, I'd off load him quickly. 

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2 hours ago, EastStreet said:

 

Yup, it's never that simple. But he is correct in that middle guys typically get wrapped up early. So do some of the high level guys. 

 

IMO, we've got a lot of bills coming due. Haven't dove in and done the math yet, but guessing we won't have all the stars back next season. Simply can't pay everyone the big bucks. Of course the draft will factor a lot. 

 

Here's a look at some of the starters/contributors that are FAs in 2023

  • Ngakoue
  • Nelson
  • Campbell
  • Okereke
  • Dulin
  • Lewis
  • Facyson
  • Pryor
  • McLeod
  • Blankenship

There's several other guys, but the above are all guys that will either be starting or getting a ton of reps.

 

And here's a look at guys in contract years after this season

  • Gilmore
  • Moore
  • Pittman
  • Taylor
  • Stewart
  • Sanchez
  • Blackman
  • Pinter
  • Rodgers
  • Patmon

 

 

Hence the urgency to win now. A lot of key players are gonna need new contracts soon.

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14 minutes ago, CR91 said:

 

Hence the urgency to win now. A lot of key players are gonna need new contracts soon.

 

Yup.

And I forgot to include Ryan, who will be in a contract year next year..... 

 

So more or less a two year window. 

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1 hour ago, EastStreet said:

 

Yup.

And I forgot to include Ryan, who will be in a contract year next year..... 

 

So more or less a two year window. 

 

Well you would think the colts would have a QB in the wing at that point

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5 hours ago, CR91 said:

 

Well you would think the colts would have a QB in the wing at that point

We pretty much have to. Ballard has to strike gold next off season or we could be looking at years of mediocracy for years - worst case. 

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3 hours ago, Solid84 said:

We pretty much have to. Ballard has to strike gold next off season or we could be looking at years of mediocracy for years - worst case. 

 

Perfect timing to get Arch Manning haha

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I’m not even gonna waste time thinking about it. If there is one thing that Ballard and his staff have absolutely excelled on, it’s cap management. We’ll be fine

22 minutes ago, CR91 said:

 

Perfect timing to get Arch Manning haha

Trade the farm for him hahaha 

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I think the biggest "winner" from the Colts off-season program - OTA's - and - mini-camp are the Indianapolis Colts.

 

We had new QB Matt Ryan "in the building" from the git-go working with his new teammates and learning Frank Reich's offense.

 

That alone - makes the off-season a positive for the Indianapolis Colts and their fans!!

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2 hours ago, sb41champs said:

I think the biggest "winner" from the Colts off-season program - OTA's - and - mini-camp are the Indianapolis Colts.

 

We had new QB Matt Ryan "in the building" from the git-go working with his new teammates and learning Frank Reich's offense.

 

That alone - makes the off-season a positive for the Indianapolis Colts and their fans!!

Think about how long it’s been since the starting QB Participated in OTA. Not even luck in 2018. Not in 2019 really because Brissett was not supposed to be the starter. Then we had Covid for 2 years. A lot of this has contributed to slow starts.

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18 hours ago, CR91 said:

 

Well you would think the colts would have a QB in the wing at that point

I've been thinking that for several seasons. Hasn't happened lol.. 

And our draft situation will likely get worse with Ryan at the helm now.

 

So perhaps we mortgage the future, or grab FAs Baker or Daniel Jones after the season. Kirk Cousins is a FA the year after lol... 

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