It will not look like the team we have grown to know without Peyton Manning on the field, but will the Colts be the team to usher in the Andrew Luck era? What can NFL bettors expect for the Indianapolis Colts this season?
Colts Sign The Second Coming (of Peyton)
By: Joe Catalano
The Indianapolis Colts have finally managed to make a lot of progress in this week's update as they've managed to come to terms with two major players.
Let's not beat around the bush anymore; the Indianapolis Colts have finally managed to sign the 1st pick of the 2012 NFL Draft in Andrew Luck and 2nd round pick Coby Fleener. You would think that the highly touted Luck would be the last to sign, but Fleener held out the longest.
Colts owner Jim Irsay seems to be using Twitter a lot these days. First, he's trying to lure fans into Lucas Oil Stadium and find ticket buyers, as the Colts have had a tough time in ticket sales, now Irsay has announced that Andrew Luck has signed a 4-year contract worth $22.1 million dollars. This deal is almost identical to that of Carolina's Cam Newton and Robert Griffin III of the Redskins. Everyone knew that Luck was going to sign; it was just a matter of when and for how much.
He waited until half an hour before July 26th, but tight end Coby Fleener has finally given in and signed on the dotted line. Terms of the deal weren't disclosed, but this is a perfect situation for Fleener in so far as he played with Luck in college. Last season, Coby Fleener had 34 receptions for 667 yards and 10 TD's. If the Colts can get anything close to that in his first year, they would be thrilled. An overall intelligent draft choice by the Colts to hook Luck up with a player with whom he's familiar.
Indy also managed to sign 3rd round draft pick Dwayne Allen. Terms were not disclosed for this tight end but the tight end position is at its limit. Nevertheless, Indy managed to get the job done, and everyone can report to training camp at Anderson University on Saturday.
Rookie nose tackle Josh Chapman will begin training camp on the PUP list. Chapman could've been taken earlier in the draft but the former Crimson Tide player was hampered by a knee injury all last year and he slipped in the draft.
Does anyone remember when fans and NFL management were wondering who would be the better running back between Ricky Williams and Edgerrin James? The Saints and Mike Ditka traded everything but the kitchen sink to get Williams but it was the former University of Miami product Edgerrin James who excelled running behind Peyton Manning.
James will be enshrined into the Indianapolis Colts Ring of Honor. James was a tough and effective runner that complimented Manning well. The enshrinement will take place on September 23rd as the Colts host the Jacksonville Jaguars.
That's it from Colts camp as there's nothing but good news. Jim Irsay managed to sign his top draft picks and the Colts can go into training camp at full strength.
Bears To Maul New-Look Colts
By: Joe Catalano
The Irsays have had a tough time selling the Colts to the fans with the loss of Manning. The fans have interest in the 1st pick of the 2012 Draft in Andrew Luck, but that's about it. This team is practically trying to give their tickets away. It will take time for Luck to be in sync with Reggie Wayne and Austin Collie. This team does have a future, but the present will be rocky. Most great NFL QB's had difficult initiations into the league. Just ask Troy Aikman.
Where Chicago's concerned, this might be Jay Cutler's year. If he can avoid injury, he has Brandon Marshall to throw the ball and all purpose back Matt Forte to watch his back. Look for the veteran Bears to give the Colts, their management, and Andrew Luck a rude awakening at Solider Field in week 1. Take the Bears and lay the double digits.
The Bears are currently installed by NFL odds makers as prohibitive favorites at -550.
Pick- Chicago Bears -11
Luck Shows Up In Indy
By: Joe Catalano
This week's Colts blog mostly involves signings, cuts, secondary issues, and the much awaited return of Andrew Luck after a long absence.
Two QB cuts in 2 days!
The Colts most recent cut was of undrafted rookie David Legree. The previous day, the Colts waived backup quarterback Trevor Vittatoe. I hate to disrepsect these potential NFL'ers but they had no chance of making the team, and Indy had to make room for the signing of veteran running back Mewelde Moore. Moore has had an 8 year NFL career as a serviceable back with the Vikings and the Steelers.
Yet to be signed are former Stanford Cardinal Andrew Luck and Coby Fleener, but it's just a matter of time. This is just a posturing measure and nothing to be concerned about if you're a Colts fan or a future bettor who took Indy in hopes of cashing in on the lottery ticket.
4-3 to 3-4
For a long time now, the Colts have been running a 4-3 defense, but the new coaching staff is all 3-4 based and that's what Indy will be playing this season. With Dwight Freeney, Robert Mathis, Pat Angerer, and Kavell Conner the Colts are set up nicely on the line and at the linebacker position. The secondary is somewhat of a concern, however.
Everyone except for cornerback Jerraud Powers (51 tackles, 2 INT) is a concern, and one of the starters will need to step up or the Colts will be giving up a lot of points this season.
On a side note, running back Donald Brown has really excelled at the OTA's, and coach Chuck Pagano is putting a major tag on Brown by saying that he could be an "every down back".
Time heals wounds
Quarterback Andrew Luck has returned from Stanford, and the fans got to get their first look at him. Of course, the coaches are already impressed with Luck's ability, but the fans (even dressed in Manning jerseys!) were surrounding Luck in search of an autograph after a 2 hour practice at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Colts' management has had a difficult time in ticket selling as I mentioned in a previous blog and thought of seeing Luck would help the ticket situation, but most of the crowd was there to get their first look at the 1st overall pick and nothing else.
Veterans Reggie Wayne and Austin Collie finally got their first opportunity to play with Luck as they've been very eagerly awaiting to build a bond with the first rounder.
That's it from Colts camp. Andrew Luck is here and we're going to be hearing a lot about him as each week rolls along.
By: Joe Catalano
Veterans stepping up
This will be a basically new team, but some veterans will play key roles in helping rookie quarterback Andrew Luck develop in his 1st year as a pro.
The media got their final glimpse of Colts players at the OTA's and the work of veteran wide receivers Reggie Wayne and Austin Collie was noted as exceptional. This is the generation of Twitter and it was noted that Collie made a couple of nice touchdown catches in the endzone, Wayne caught a bunch of touchdowns while making the play of the day on a tipped ball, and rookie tight end Dwayne Allen caught a TD pass off of a deflection and then proceeded to get a chest bump from offensive guard Mike McGlynn.
Mandatory mini-camps start next week and Andrew Luck will be there.
The Colts will most likely start two of Peyton Manning's favorite receivers in Wayne and Collie this season and their veteran experience will definitely help Andrew Luck
T.Y. Hilton is signs with Colts
Andrew Luck's Stanford counterpart remains unsigned, but 3rd round draft pick T.Y Hilton out of FIU has been signed. This is important for the Colts;as Hilton will be a backup for now but should be a vital part of the offense. Hilton is a speedster that set records at FIU and can also return punts and kickoffs.
Offensive lineman Jake Kirkpatrick has been put on waivers. This is the 2nd year that Kirkpatrick has failed to make the team. Third times a charm?
Undrafted rookie linebacker Kevin Eagan out of Endicott College has been released
On the positive side, the Colts sign free agent receiver Kris Adams out of UTEP. Adams was released by the Vikings but has 2657 yards and 30 TD's to his credit in his college career.
Indy has also signed cornerback Justin King. King has played his last 4 seasons with the St. Louis Rams and has started 19 games and recorded 131 tackles in that time.
Reggie Wayne and Austin Collie are both chomping at the bits, waiting for Andrew Luck to finish up his classes and attend mini-camp. It looks like they forgot about Peyton Manning really quickly. This seem's to be a team of promise as the Colts look to forget about the 2011 season and QB Curtis Painter.
Action is happening at a rapid pace in Colts camp. Stay tuned for the next installment as Andrew Luck make's his appearance at mini-camp.
How Luck-y can you be?
By: Joe Catalano
The Luck era has begun in Indianapolis and the Colts are expecting quarterback Andrew Luck to live up to the reputation that he's earned at Stanford University.
Luck impresses immediately
As second round pick and teammate from Stanford, Coby Fleener put it best about first overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft Andrew Luck: "he's as brilliant as ever". Fleener is referring to Luck's "30 worded play calling" in minicamp. The coaches and other players were also impressed with what Fleener had seen for his entire college career.
The drafting of Fleener was brilliant by the Colts as Luck immediately has a key player that he's familiar with on and off of the field. A move to the midwest can be difficult coming from Northern California but Coby Fleener will be there to lessen the shock as one experiences a change of scenery and style of living.
Set for life
More news revolves around Andrew Luck as the amount of his signing bonus was disclosed on his 4 year contract. The signing bonus is the same exact amount as Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton at $14,518,544. Luck's contract is slightly higher than Newton's but both contracts are very similar.
Owner Jim Irsay spared no time in getting Manning out and Luck in.
In the genes?
The Colts are hoping that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree as the son of all time great kicker Gary Anderson, Austin Anderson is in camp. Anderson comes from McGill University in Montreal, Quebec Canada. Anderson hope's to show enough to get into training camp but attempting to overtake place kicker Adam Vinatieri seems impossible as Vinatieri has Hall of Fame credentials.
This doesn't affect the bettors but if you live in that local area, training camp will remain in Anderson University which is about 25 miles north of Indianapolis and players report on July 28th.
Just over a week ago the Colts signed RB Deji Karim who was released by Jacksonville off of waivers. Karim averaged 24.7 yard per kickoff return will accruing 420 all-purpose yards (rushing and receiving) in 23 games with the Jags. Indy also went to the arena league where they signed tight end Dominique Jones.
In all, the Colts signed 15 undrafted free agents in hope's of finding some players that can fill some holes left by the departures of players from their disastrous 2011 season.
A team can't function on one player alone but the focus is definitely on the franchise, Andrew Luck.
Good Luck Charm
By: Joe Catalano
A new start for the Indianapolis Colts occurred when they took down the Peyton Manning banners in anticipation of the NFL Draft.No surprises here
The Indianapolis Colts immediately drafted quarterback Andrew luck out of Stanford as was expected. Although he was expected to win the Heisman Trophy and was beat out by Robert Griffin III, the NFL game is made for a player with Luck's attributes.Familiar face
Aside from kicking Peyton Manning to the curb, how do you make a quarterback like Luck feel comfortable in new surroundings? The Colts end up drafting Luck's college teammate, tight end Coby Fleener in the 2nd round. There's a familiarity with these two players and with the loss of Dallas Clark, the Colts make a fantastic pick in Fleener.
On the season, Fleener caught for 667 yards and 10 TD's
Two heads are better than one
Indy immediately comes back in the 3rd round and drafts another tight end in Dwayne Allen out of Clemson. Another big player from another school with a good reputation.Offense is the focus
The Colts end up drafting five offensive players out of their next seven picks. On the defensive side, the Colts snatch up a national champion in defensive tackle Josh Chapman from Alabama and the famed Hoover High in High school. This kid's a winner.Possible fits on offense
3rd Round- T.Y. Hilton- WR- FIU - This is small player with some speed that excels after the catch (YAC). Although he went to one of the smaller schools in FIU, Hilton caught for 1038 yards and 7 TD. If there's anyone that can turn this kid into a legitimate NFL player it's Andrew Luck.
5th round- Vick Ballard- RB- Mississippi State- Ballard played on an average team in a good conference and managed to run for 1189 yards and 10 TD.
6th round- Lavon Brazill- WR- Ohio- Indy might have found a nice player in Brazill in the later rounds. He can catch the ball and return punts. Something tells me that this guy will stick and have a decent sized role in the offense.
There's your Indy update. The combination of Luck to Fleener could pay large dividends at the higher level.
Colts 2012 Schedule
By: Joseph Catalano
The NFL Draft is quickly approaching. Indianapolis has made a commitment to Andrew luck while Peyton Manning is a Denver Bronco. Let's take a look at the Colt's 2012 schedule.
5 Green Bay
6 @ Jets
8 @ Tennessee
10 @ Jacksonville
11 @ New England
13 @ Detroit
15 @ Houston
16 @ Kansas City
This isn't a team that will get double-digit wins. As we saw last season with Cam Newton, there will be a learning process in which the starting quarterback, presumably Andrew Luck, gets adjusted to the team.
Indianapolis will definitely benefit from an early season bye in week 4. The early part of the schedule is slightly tougher as the Colts start off in a hostile Solider Field. The other two games of concern are the Packers at home and the Jets on the road.
Beating a Packer team looking to avenge a disappointing end to last season seems impossible, while the Jets will be all business this season as they were embarrassed last year. No "Hard Knocks" for Gang Green this season.
"Home friendly" schedule
This is a schedule of good teams sprinkled in with bad. The Colts' best opportunities for wins during the middle part of the season are in week 7 when they host the Cleveland Browns, week 9 when they host a Dolphins team that can't seem to get its quarterback situation right, and a potential week 12 shootout when they host Ryan Fitzpatrick and the inconsistent Buffalo Bills.
A happy ending?
After a tough trip to Detroit in week 13, the Colts have a chance to win all of their remaining games as they host Tennessee and Houston while going on the road to face the same Houston squad and a disappointing Kansas City Chiefs team.
In most of these game, you would expect Indianapolis to be the betting underdog, but these are winnable games if Andrew Luck can build a chemistry with his team like Andy Dalton did last season with the Bengals.
Stay tuned to see if "Luck" is on Indy's side as we keep you updated on Indianapolis Colts news.
Indianapolis Colts: Luck of the draw
By: Joe Catalano
Indianapolis you're going to get a very good price where future NFL odds to win the
Super Bowl are concerned. Reggie Wayne has decided to return to Indy and that
might improve their record by a couple of games but it won't win them a Super
Bowl. What Wayne can do is make Andrew Luck's inaugurational season into the
NFL a lot easier because he's teamed up with the best in Peyton Manning for
Aikman and Manning
Troy Aikman had Emmitt Smith and Michael Irvin, but he was just 1-15 in his
first season with the Dallas Cowboys before he went on to win 3 Super Bowl
same goes for Peyton Manning. In Peyton's first season with the Colts (1998),
the team went 3-13 with manning throwing for 26 TD and 28 INT. The theory that
I'm trying to get at was that Rome wasn't built in a day.
season was a great example of what to expect. Quarterback Cam Newton had a
spectacular rookie season but a losing one while Andy Dalton, who was drafted
in the 2nd round, made it into the playoffs, had a successful season, but was
obviously not ready to carry the coveted Lombardi Trophy.
could've been and what is
Peyton Manning was still the quarterback of this franchise, the Colts would
still be one of the top 5 favorites (probably around 5th or 6th) to win the
Super Bowl. Having released the man who built Indy, the Colts will use their first pick of the NFL Draft to pick up one of the hottest QB prospects in ages.
Andrew Luck as quarterback, the Colts will be a major longshot and unless you
have a Kurt Warner 1999 St.Louis Cardinals Rams in where the Rams were
200-1 and won the Super Bowl, the Colts are looking at nothing better than 6
wins tops, and that's being generous.
people might hope that Luck is the ticket to the AFC South, as the Colts will
still have a nice price and have to beat out only a few teams. It might be worth
throwing someof your sports betting winnings on. Stranger things have happened and the Colts would
only have to beat out 3 teams.
Jacksonville Jaguars (5-11) are beatable, the Tennessee Titans (9-7) could be
beatable without a star quarterback, and the defending champion Houston Texans
(10-6) are also beatable. There's no team in this division with the talent of
Green Bay, New Orleans, or New England. Although far-fetched, if Luck is on the
Colts side with Wayne returning, anything is possible.
The most realistic NFL betting option on this team would be on on the season win totals, as either you take
the under or the over. As I've stated, we don't know the totals are yet but you
can expect the Colts to improve from last season.
factors need to be taken into account like the loss of Pierre Garcon, Dallas
Clark, and running back Joseph Addai. The NFL Draft can sway the win total one
or two games in either direction depending on who the Colts draft. We know that
the Colts are drafting Andrew Luck and to me, that's at least 3 to 4 wins
without anything else being said, but without Garcon, Addai, and Clark, the
Colts will need to make some moves in order for this team to reach the 6 win
Indianapolis Colts have what every team desires, a franchise quarterback.
Saying that, they're not ready to win now, and with the losses of Manning,
Addai, Garcon, and Clark, they have a lot of work to do in the upcoming NFL
Draft. It will cost them a few games, and they'll be one of the biggest
longshots on the board.
It's all about the drafting talent. Do they have
the knowledge to draft an Emmitt Smith or Michael Irvin? That's the question.