Happy New NFL Year! It is the March Madness of the NFL. Legal tampering and free agency is well over a week old and it started off with quite a bang for some teams, including former Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown to the Oakland Raiders and his former teammate, running back Le’Veon Bell to the New York Jets, and not to mention the huge trade that sent WR Odell Beckham, Jr. to the Cleveland Browns.
And although these big name signings and teams were bringing the month of March “in like a lion”, the Indianapolis Colts were, and still are, very quiet in the trade talks.
The Colts, who currently hold the most salary cap space for the 2019 season, have little movement going forward. Listening to many of his pressers and interviews, it should not be a shock that Colts’ GM Chris Ballard didn’t have any plans to sign any huge names or make big splashes. And there is nothing wrong with that, in my humble and honest opinion.
When you lead the league in tackles, 146 to be exact, as a rookie linebacker, have 7 sacks, are coming in second in tackles behind the line of scrimmage, and are seventh in pass breakups, fans would assume this individual is going places in the NFL. This would include being selected to the NFL Pro Bowl in Orlando.
According to Robert Klemko of Sports Illustrated, “Three bodies vote on Pro Bowlers: Coaches, players, and fans. Necessarily, primetime broadcasts have a big influence on all three groups. How many primetime games did the Colts get in 2018? One: Thursday Night Football on Oct. 4, vs. the Patriots. (And it was the lone game Leonard missed this season due to injury).”
After Sunday’s AFC South Divisional loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars, the jury is out on if the Indianapolis Colts can actually make a wild card playoff appearance. Although there are still 4 games left in the regular season, chances now appear to be diminishing.
On Sunday’s matchup, it appeared to be the Battle the Defenses as the Colts only allowed the Jaguars 211 total yards. (132 passing and 79 rushing).
Defensive end Denico Autry led with seven solo tackles, three sacks, two forced fumbles, and four quarterback hits. Autry has become one of the first Colts’ to pick up three sacks since defensive end Robert Mathis in 2013. Although Indianapolis did not get their needed divisional victory, the defensive line kept Jaguars backup quarterback Cody Kessler and company from the end zone and forcing two field goals.
The Indianapolis Colts showed considerable preseason growing pains in their hometown debut against the Baltimore Ravens on Monday night. It’s more evident than ever that Colts quarterback Andrew Luck is on a long road to recovery after missing over a year on the field. Unfortunately, the situation is more urgent than ever as the regular season is just around the corner.
Luck appeared in Monday night’s game for just five series, going 6-for-13 for 50 yards, along with a pair of sacks and a red zone interception. “I didn’t feel like we as an offense got into any semblance of a sustained rhythm,” Luck told the Indy Star. “I think we were just sloppy a little bit.”
Head coach Frank Reich has been thrilled with the Colts’ progress in training camp, but has utilized a more simplified offensive scheme in the first two preseason games, reserving the Colts’ best plays for the regular season and a well-adjusted team.
Colts fans can’t remember an offseason with this much importance.
The Indianapolis Colts were named one of the league’s six most improved teams of 2018 by ESPN’s Bill Barnwell- not surprising after the last couple of seasons the Colts have had. Quarterback Andrew Luck has returned after two long awaited years on injury reserve and has been practicing with the team in training camp.
The Indianapolis Colts return to their building today, starting their offseason program, and Andrew Luck will be joining them.
The Indianapolis Colts didn’t have much to be happy about in 2017. With the injury of quarterback Andrew Luck lingering much longer than anyone expected, his return to the team could be a game changer. Will 2018 be the year we finally see the revival of the team who just a few years ago had such potential?
Luck injured his shoulder back in September of 2015, although at the time, not many knew how severe the injury was. Luck missed the next two games, but then came back to play 4 more, but sadly his 2015 season was ended due to a lacerated kidney.
In the second week of the 2016 season, Luck re-injured his shoulder during a game against Denver. At the time, Colts owner Jim Irsay said Luck wouldn’t need surgery, however, Luck spent much of that season on and off the injury report. It was at the end of the 2016 season that the severity of the injury truly came to light. Luck had surgery during the 2017 offseason, and although it was anticipated he would return at some point, was never given clearance to play in 2017.