I thought that with another succesful Colts season coming to a close, that I’d give my thoughts on a positional basis and the team. Who should be kept or replaced or whatnot. This is mostly a starter thing, but I threw in a few backups where I feel its warranted.
QB: Andrew Luck – if I have to explain this, you’re too stupid to live, aka Skip Bayless.
RB: Vick Ballard – Vick feels like a keeper to me. Nate Dunleavy of Bleacher Report thinks he’s easily replaceable and should be. I don’t know how you can get a good gage on that with the present oline. There are things he needs to work on, catching the ball, pass blocking, but how many runningbacks are good off the bat at that. Edgerrin James and Joseph Addai aren’t easy to find. Let’s give Vick a chance. He’s come on faster than Donald Brown did. They need a back-up though. Let’s put an end to the Mewelde Moore experiment.
WR: Reggie Wayne – Reggie! Reggie! Reggie! Nuff said. Donnie Avery – Very replacable. Avery disappears too much and too easily. And drops way too many balls. We need someone else. TY Hilton – Me likey. TY ended the season in the top four among rookie receivers. Maybe he can be a number 1, but if not, he’ll be a hell of a 2. LaVon Brazil – Seems promising. A little more so than Pierre Garcon at the same point.
LT: Anthony Castonzo – He had an up and down year. How much of that was because he has crap beside him and how much of it is that he’s miscast as a left tackle, I don’t know. I keep thinking that he would better as a right tackle.
LG: Joe Reitz – Who knows? He’s been too injured to really solidify anything. There’s room for an upgrade.
C: Samson Satele – I haven’t been impressed. Sometimes, I think that AQ Shipley is better. I know he’s limited athletically, but the oline seems better when he’s in. Maybe he’s more consistent than Satele is. Either way, a better starter is needed.
RG: Mike McGlynn – I’ve barely noticed him at all this season. I think that’s a good thing. I’m sure there’s an upgrade out there somewhere, but maybe this is the last position on the oline to worry about.
RT: Winston Justice – I’ve heard from other sources that he played well this year. I didn’t see it. What I did see was a lot if ends getting around him to get to Luck. Either way, he’s injury prone and thus needs replacing.
Top Backup: Jeff Linkenbach – Ugh. There must be someone better out there.
DE: Cory Redding – He had his moments, but wasn’t consistent with his production. Not the worst, though. I would fix other defensive positions before worrying about replacing Cory. Fili Moala – I like what the team got from Drake Nevis and Ricardo Mathews better. Maybe he can finally produce with another off season in this defense, but the Colts should still try and upgrade.
NT: Antonio Johnson – He’s ok in spots, but his spots aren’t big enough. The Colts need Josh Chapman to be the force he was at Alabama.
OLB: Dwight Freeney – He’s out of position and maybe aging. I don’t think he’s coming back. He wants to be a DE. Robert Mathis – The transition fit him well. He may take over Freeney’s spot or the Colts may try and find a replacement. I don’t think Jerry Hughes is it.
ILB: Jerrel Freeman – Nice! He lead the team with 203 tackles. I can’t wait to see his encore. Pat Angerer – Once he’s healthy, he should fit in fine. He had a few moments near the end of the year, but the team said that he wouldn’t be 100% this season. Kavell Connor – He lost his starting spot to Angerer because he can’t defend the pass. I don’t know if he has a spot going forward.
CB: Vontae Davis – This looked like a good pick-up by the end of the year. I think Coach Chuck can turn him into a legit #1 corner. Cassius Vaughn – he may be ok as a nickle back, but he’s not starter material. Darius Butler – I think this was another good pick-up. He seems like a good nickle corner to me. The Colts just need to keep him off the big receivers until they perfect his technique. Jerraud Powers – Injury prone. He can’t help the team from IR.
SS: Tom Zbikowski – Replace him. I think he had two good plays this year. Joe Lefeged – He’s not a stud, but he can hold the position until a replacement his found. He at least outplayed Zbikowski. That’s a good starting point.
FS: Antoine Bethea – He started off slow this year, but once he got a little more used to the new defense, his play picked up. Were I the Colts and a really good free safety fell into their laps, I’d consider switching Bethea to strong safety. He looks good near the line o’ scrimmage.
Kicker: Adam Vinatieri – He struggled this year, but made clutch kicks all the same. That’s more important than any booming leg. Right, Mike Vanderjact?
Punter: Pat “Boomstick” McAfee – His contract is up, so the Colts better resign him. He’s a weapon, able to flip the field and is learning directional punting. Dropping punts inside the two yard line isn’t something to be taken lightly.
PR/KR: TY Hilton – The rookie got better at this as the year went along. Unless he becomes to valueable as a receiver, he should be kept returning punts. Deji Kareem – Anybody that can run a kick-off back 101 yards for a TD is ok in myAa book. Hell, I was happy he was just getting beyond the 20.
So there you have it. Things I want to happen with the known quantities on the team. The bottom line is that I trust this organization to make smart picks and build toward an even brighter future than the present is now.