Posts tagged Chicago Bears
One of the most prevalent issues for the Indianapolis Colts in 2010 was the unprecedented number of injuries the team’s players incurred at almost every position on the team. The Colts were not alone — the World Champion Green Bay Packers were the second most injured team in the league. The frequency and severity of injuries has become one of the most discussed topics in all of football for players, owners, the NFL Competition Committee, and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.
In 2005, Major League Baseball had to address an unrelated matter that could have some correlation with the number of injuries some NFL teams have experienced over the last few years. Players like Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, Jose Conseco, Alex Rodriguez and others were all either questioned or openly discussed the use of performance enhancing drugs like steroids. The issue was so important that Congress saw fit to have hearings regarding the use of illegal performance enhancers in professional sports.
Shortly after Congress expressed open concerns with the use of steroids in professional sports, the NFL instituted a crack down of its own, increasing the penalties for use and the frequency of tests to catch violators of their substance abuse policies. As with any change in policy, words on paper or an agreement reached between players and the NFL are meaningless unless those words and the agreement is enforced. It took the league approximately one year to start getting some results by instituting penalties, suspensions, and making good on their word to be diligent with the use of steroids. More >
The Indianapolis Colts are known for their ability to put together teams that are young and competitive on the field with a chance to win the Super Bowl every year. The team has accomplished this by finding jewels in the draft that other teams simply overlook. As a Colts fan I have nothing but respect and admiration for the front office of the Colts and thank them for the product they consistently put on the field for Colts fans to cheer. It’s time for the next step, and at this point in Peyton Manning’s career it’s now or never for the Indy. Unlike many of the experts out there, I do not believe that Peyton is anywhere close to the end of his career. I do believe that he is at the point where the team can’t just wait for young talent to develop around him.
Starting with the offensive line, Ryan Diem has been rode hard this year for the false starts and his mental mistakes, but I’m one who believes that a lot of his issues were because of having to play through injuries all year long with a lack of depth behind him. The same could be said for left tackle Charlie Johnson. The hope in the franchise should be that Ryan Diem will work with the front office on restructuring his $5.4 million deal that would allow the team to pay him on incentives as opposed to cutting him as cap casualty.
Regardless what happens with Diem, the best answer for the Colts is to not miss out on a chance to get an anchor left tackle early in the draft such as Anthony Castonzo, Boston College, Nate Solder, Colorado, Gabe Carimi, Wisconsin, or Derek Sherrod, Mississippi State. There is also the option of landing a couple solid free agents with both Tyson Clabo of Atlanta and Matt Light being available, Clabo being ideal because of his youth. At guard the best answer without question is to find a way to sign Logan Mankins out of New England. Adding an all pro will allow you to let Jamey Richard and Mike Pollak fight for the starting spot next to Mankins with the loser backing up both the center and guard spots.
Ideal line: LT-Tyson Clabo, LG- Logan Mankins, C- Jeff Saturday, RG- Mike Pollak, and RT- Gabe Carimi. More >
Colts fans are stuck in limbo. The Super Bowl is still two weeks away, so talking about the off-season seems premature. Before fans get to that point, it is worthwhile to take a look back at 2010 to gauge where the Colts franchise will be when the draft and summer activities roll around.
One of the biggest impacts on Indianapolis in 2010 was the unprecedented number of injuries the team had to play through. The Colts placed 18 players on Injured Reserve, and two others on the injured/waived list — including Taj Smith, who rejoined the Colts. This number does not include injured players who missed multiple games throughout the year, but still managed to hold onto a roster spot.
Below are three ways to examine Indy’s injuries in 2010.
One of the most enjoyable experiences I have had since I started writing about the Colts is when I put a lot of focus on researching players entering the 2009 NFL Draft. It gave me the opportunity to “play scout” for a year. So, when the Colts signed Chip Vaughn, I was excited to see him develop on the team and have a chance to work his way onto the roster. Not unlike most things involving Colts safeties this year, that all ended due to injury.
The Colts replaced Vaughn with second-year safety Al Afalava. I projected that the Colts may select Afalava in the sixth round in 2009, but not unlike most of my predictions, I was wrong. The Bears selected him seventeenth in the sixth round. He started much of his rookie season at both strong and free safety for the Bears before falling out of favor. More >
Importance of NFL Organizational Stability to Winning
In 2004 the Washington Post wrote a story titled The Formula for Success discussing the New England Patriots’, Pittsburgh Steelers’, and Philadelphia Eagles’ success during the 2004 NFL season. The article generally considers the importance of organizational stability to winning in the NFL.
Colts Mini-Camp Roster Predictions: Defense
The other side of the ball for the Colts promises to be even more interesting as the summer plays out. The number of familiar faces out the team’s defensive depth is incredibly thin. New players will have to step up to replace names like Freddie Keiaho, Tyjuan Hagler, Marlin Jackson, Tim Jennings, and Raheem Brock.
Colts Mini-Camp Roster Predictions: What We Have Lost
While there is a lot of turmoil surrounding the Colts this summer, with contract disputes and issues to handle, it is getting closer to that time when Colts management will go into serious evaluation of the players on the roster and begin to cut down to more manageable sizes. The key cut dates are still months away, and will likely be in early September, but the time to really evaluate the talent and begin making those decisions begins with some of the workouts players will run through during this weekend’s mini-camp.
The Myth of the Third Round Curse
Bill Polian has earned a reputation as one of the best executives in NFL history. He has created this perception largely due to having unparalleled success each year in the NFL Draft. No team in the NFL has used the draft and undrafted free agency as successfully as Polian, creating an atmosphere where the Colts system reigns king and where finding players who best function within it is the goal.
Generally, players that enter the NFL are no different than future professionals in the business world; once they are trained to play a certain way and are molded physically to fit in that role, they are more difficult to acclimate to an entirely different system. As a result, the best way for Polian and the Colts to find an endless crop of new talent is to get them early, train them to play the Colts way, and build the strength of the franchise by retaining the best players and not allowing them to leave via free agency. More >