Heading into this afternoon's regular-season opener with the Oakland Raiders, here is a position-by-position look at the 2013 Indianapolis Colts:
Starter – Andrew Luck. Backup – Matt Hasselbeck.
The Colts have opted to go with just two quarterbacks on the regular-season roster this season. Luck had a strong preseason and Hasselbeck provides perhaps the best primary backup in several years. Former No. 3 quarterback Chandler Harnish was among Indianapolis’ final cuts and then signed to the practice squad.
Starter — Vick Ballard. Backups – Ahmad Bradshaw, Donald Brown, Stanley Havili (FB).
Heading into the Oakland game, Ballard figures to be the starter. Bradshaw, though, will see plenty of playing time as part of a three-back rotation along with Brown. Bradshaw, who did not play in the preseason, could end up as No. 1 on the depth chart as the season progresses. Havili is the lone true fullback on the Colts’ regular-season roster.
Starter — Dwayne Allen. Backups — Jack Doyle, Coby Fleener, Dominique Jones.
Allen appears to have recovered from a foot injury that he incurred during the second week of training camp. He did not play in the preseason. Allen, though, is expected to start the regular-season opener with the Raiders. Fleener had an inconsistent preseason but is expected to be a key contributor to the Colts’ offensive attack. Doyle, an Indy native, was added to the roster after being released by Tennessee and will help fill the role of end-line blocker and H-Back. Jones was released, re-signed to the practice squad and then elevated to the regular-season all in a matter of three days.
Starters – Reggie Wayne, Darrius Heyward-Bey. Backups – T.Y. Hilton, David Reed, Griff Whalen. Suspended – LaVon Brazill.
The Colts have pretty good quality at receiver with Wayne, Heyward-Bey and Hilton. Heyward-Bey and Hilton will share one outside receiver position, with Hilton also getting work in the slot. Whalen is the No. 4 receiver for now with Brazill being sidelined for the first four games of the season due to violations of the league’s substance abuse policies. Reed is recovering from a concussion suffered in the final preseason game but is expected to be the No. 5 receiver for now.
Starters — LT Anthony Castonzo, LG Donald Thomas, C Samson Satele, RG Mike McGlynn, RT Gosder Cherilis. Backups – C/G Khaled Holmes, G/T Jeff Linkenbach, T/G Joe Reitz, G Hugh Thornton.
Castonzo is recovering from a sprained knee but is expected to be in the starting lineup against Oakland in the season opener. McGlynn is also rehabbing a sore knee. He should start as well. Satele returns for his second season as a starter. Thomas and Cherilis were signed as veteran free agents during the offseason and will hopefully help to stabilize the Colts’ offensive line. Holmes and Thornton are promising rookies who could push for playing time. Linkenbach and Reitz are both versatile veterans who can play several positions.
Starters — DE Cory Redding, NT Aubrayo Franklin, DT Ricky Jean Francois. Backups – NT Josh Chapman, DT Montori Hughes, DT Ricardo Mathews, DE Fili Moala.
Two new starters in Franklin and Jean Francois with Redding the lone returnee from the 2012 season. Chapman is expected to see plenty of work as he rotates with Franklin at nose tackle. Versatility earmarks the rest of the defensive line as Hughes, Mathews and Moala can all play dual positions. Hughes has been impressive as a nose tackle and defensive tackle. Mathews and Moala have proven adept at playing tackle and end.
Starters — SLB Erik Walden, ILB Pat Angerer, ILB Jerrell Freeman, RLB Robert Mathis. Backups – ILB Kavell Conner, ILB Mario Harvey, OLB Cam Johnson, ILB Kelvin Sheppard. OLB Bjoern Werner.
New starter at strong side linebacker in Walden. Angerer appears to be healthy again after struggling with a foot injury all of last season and during the preseason this year. Freeman led the Colts in tackles last season as a first-year starter. Mathis moves over to be the rush linebacker, taking over for former starter Dwight Freeney. Indianapolis looks to have good depth with Conner, Harvey and Sheppard inside. Johnson was added to the roster on Monday in a trade with the San Francisco 49ers. He can play either the rush or the strong side outside linebacking role. Werner, the Colts' top draft pick last spring, continues to be a work in progress but has played relatively well in the early going.
DEFENSIVE BACKS: Starters – LCB Greg Toler, S LaRon Landry, S Antoine Bethea, RCB Vontae Davis. Backups – S Sergio Brown, CB Darius Butler, CB Josh Gordy, S Delano Howell, S Joe Lefeged, CB Cassius Vaughn.
The Colts have improved the secondary with the additions of Toler and Landry. They should team with Davis and Bethea to give Indianapolis a strong starting group. Landry and Bethea are both listed as safeties, with either one having the ability to play near the line or back in pass coverage. Butler, Vaughn and Gordy provide pretty good depth at cornerback. Lefeged, Brown and Howell strengthen the safety position.
Starters — P/KO/H Pat McAfee, PK Adam Vinatieri, LS Matt Overton, KR David Reed, PR T.Y. Hilton.
McAfee and Vintatieri combine to give Indianapolis a great one-two punch on special teams. McAfee is the Colts’ punter, kickoff specialist and placement holder. Vinatieri had a strong preseason and appears ready to start his 19th year in the league. Overton is in his second year as Indianapolis’ long snapper. Reed will most likely handle kickoff returns while Hilton is the primary punt returner. CB Cassius Vaughn can also return kicks for the Colts.
Heading into this afternoon's regular-season opener with the Oakland Raiders, here is a position-by-position look at the 2013 Indianapolis Colts:
Colts’ Luck getting timing down with newcomer Nicks
The Indianapolis Colts have officially put the 2013 season in the rear-view mirror with the start of the team’s off-season conditioning workouts, which got under way at the team’s West 56th Street Indiana Farm Bureau Center on Monday morning.
Colts open against Manning, Broncos
Indianapolis will open this season at AFC champion Denver in a Sunday night showdown pitting quarterback Peyton Manning against his former team.
Colts take another look at Shakir Bell
Under general manager Ryan Grigson, the Indianapolis Colts have searched nationally and internationally for talent to build a program that has won 23 of 34 games in the last two seasons.
On Wednesday, the Colts took a look at some Indianapolis-area talent, including former Warren Central High School and Indiana State standout Shakir Bell.
Police: Colts owner had $29K in cash when arrested
CARMEL, Ind. (AP) — Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay had $29,000 in cash and bottles of prescription drugs in his vehicle when he was arrested on suspicion of intoxicated driving, according to a police arrest report.
Family source: Irsay has gone to treatment facility
The family of Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay said Tuesday that he has placed himself in a treatment facility after police found multiple prescription drugs in his vehicle during a traffic stop.
The 54-year-old Irsay, who acknowledged a painkiller dependency more than a decade ago, faces preliminary charges of misdemeanor driving while intoxicated and four felony counts of possession of a controlled substance. He was arrested near his home in suburban Carmel late Sunday and released the next day.
Colts owner has double image in media
Colts owner Jim Irsay is known in NFL circles as a tough businessman and eccentric billionaire who enjoys interacting with fans about his beloved team and favorite songs from bands like the Beatles and the Grateful Dead. He may end up adding convicted felon to the mix.
Update: Colts owner Irsay arrested for DWI
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Colts owner Jim Irsay was jailed today on suspicion of intoxicated driving after police said he failed sobriety tests during a traffic stop and they found multiple prescription drugs inside his vehicle.
Colts sign former Giants receiver Nicks
Ryan Grigson loves to make a deal. The Indianapolis Colts third-year general manager has earned a reputation around the National Football League as a guy who will act decisively and quickly if there’s somebody that he really wants. That trait proved true again Friday as the Colts added former New York Giants wide receiver Hakeem Nicks to the team’s roster.
Colts keep Vinatieri, Davis, Bradshaw in fold
With the NFL’s free-agency signing period getting underway at 4 p.m. Tuesday, it was fairly certain that the Indianapolis Colts would be active participants.
The Colts went into free agency with around $40 million of salary cap space in their back pocket. Indianapolis general manager Ryan Grigson, however, had indicated at the National Football Scouting Combine that he wanted to be judicious in how the team spent its money.
Colts re-sign punter McAfee for five years
Shortly before 10 a.m. Friday, Pat McAfee — the Indianapolis Colts’ punter and kickoff specialist — tweeted that he had a special announcement to make at the top of the hour.
Colts excited to add talent, experience of D'Qwell Jackson
With the National Football League's veteran free agency period set to start on March 11, the Indianapolis Colts front office has started to make the decisions needed to retool for the 2014 season.
Former Cleveland Browns inside linebacker D’Qwell Jackson, who had been released by Cleveland on Feb. 26, signed a reported four-year, $22 million deal with Indianapolis on Thursday. Only the first two years of the contract are guaranteed.
Jackson (6-foot, 240) started 96-of-97 games over the past eight seasons with the Browns since being selected by the team in the second round of the 2006 draft. He played collegiately at Maryland.
EIU’s Garoppolo hopes to impress scouts
Let the Eastern Illinois University quarterback tradition continue.
Mike Shanahan, Jeff Christensen, Sean Payton, Tony Romo and, now, Jimmy Garoppolo. All were record-setting quarterbacks on the Division II and FCS levels.
Grigson says Colts likely not to make big splash in free agency
Don’t expect the Indianapolis Colts to go wild in the upcoming free-agent market.
While the Colts will have anywhere from $33 to $37 million to spend this offseason, Indianapolis general manager Ryan Grigson says the franchise will be a bit more selective when it comes to signing any prospective veteran free agents.
SEASON IN REVIEW: Colts make progress in 2013 season
The Indianapolis Colts made plenty of progress over the course of the 2013 season.
And the Colts fought through some adversity as injuries hit the team hard at several positions, most notably at wide receiver (Reggie Wayne), tight end (Dwayne Allen), running back (Vick Ballard, Ahmad Bradshaw), offensive line (Donald Thomas) and cornerback (Greg Toler).
Moving on: Coach likes what he sees, gets ready for phase three of Colts’ development
Time to move on. In the wake of the Indianapolis Colts’ 43-22 AFC divisional playoff loss at New England last Saturday night, head coach Chuck Pagano is ready to take time off and then start getting after it again late this spring.
Blunt force trauma: Patriots running game too much for Colts
LeGarrette Blount ran the New England Patriots into their third straight AFC championship game.
The 250-pound back had four touchdown runs and New England kept Andrew Luck from a second straight comeback win to beat the Indianapolis Colts 43-22 Sunday night.
‘Still the same Tom’
How do you attempt to stop, or even slow down, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady?
Belichick impressed with Luck's skills, poise under pressure
Bill Belichick doesn’t have to be reminded about the talents of Indianapolis Colts second-year quarterback Andrew Luck.
Although Belichick’s New England Patriots handed the Colts a 59-24 loss in Foxboro last year, he came away from the game with plenty of respect for the young signal caller.
Colts, Patriots, both with many new faces, to meet in playoffs for fourth time
Here we go again. Yet another Indianapolis Colts-New England Patriots playoff game.
Up next for Colts: Brady, Patriots
Hello Tom Brady.
Thanks to the San Diego Chargers’ 27-10 AFC wild-card playoff win over Cincinnati on Sunday at Paul Brown Stadium, the Indianapolis Colts will be traveling to Foxboro, Massachusetts to face Brady’s New England Patriots Saturday (8:15 p.m.).
Luck leads huge rally as Colts grab first playoff win for Pagano
What a game.
Just when it looked like the Indianapolis Colts were going to be blown out at home in an AFC wild-card playoff game by the Kansas City Chiefs, the impossible happened.
Colts sell out today's Kansas City game
There will be no local television blackouts in the NFL this weekend.
The Indianapolis Colts, Cincinnati Bengals and Green Bay Packers said Friday that their weekend wild-card playoff games are sellouts. Normally, teams must sell out 72 hours before kickoff to have a game broadcast in their local market. The NFL gave the Colts, Bengals and Packers an extra day to do it.
The Colts host Kansas City today. On Sunday, the Packers host San Francisco and the Bengals host San Diego.
NFL honors Colts' Mathis with Deacon Jones Award
Robert Mathis never got to see Deacon Jones take down opposing quarterbacks in person.
He learned to appreciate Jones’ creativity over time.
The Colts Pro Bowl linebacker and newly crowned sacks champion was honored Thursday as the inaugural winner of the NFL’s Deacon Jones Award, which goes to the league’s sacks leader. Mathis will be recognized at the NFL award banquet Feb. 1.
Victory over Chiefs means nil, Mathis says
Robert Mathis doesn’t care that the Indianapolis Colts registered a 23-7 win over the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium two weeks ago.
Record-setting Indy win
Finish the National Football League regular season strong. That’s what the Indianapolis Colts wanted to accomplish Sunday at Lucas Oil Stadium.
In major gain, Colts lead NFL in fewest turnovers
Play clean. That’s been a credo that the Indianapolis Colts have tried to live by this season.
Has Luck's growth been accelerated by Colts' adversity? Probably
Indianapolis Colts second-year quarterback Andrew Luck is quickly becoming known as a guy who can quickly adjust to any situation.
Toeing the line: Colts’ offensive line getting healthy, finding niche as playoffs near
The Indianapolis Colts’ offensive line has certainly taken its share of hits this season, both on and off the field.
Colts’ chief strength: No panic
The Indianapolis Colts had watched the Kansas City Chiefs march downfield for an easy score on the first series of the game, yet nobody on their sideline seemed to be worried.
In fact, it seemed as if their confidence soared.
Luck has knack for knowing when to run
To run or not to run. When it comes to Indianapolis Colts second-year quarterback Andrew Luck, his competitive nature usually comes into play.
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