Hey Colts fans, it’s Matt Bowen your Colts Team Photographer. I will be posting my “Tuesday’s Top 10″ photo gallery linked to this blog on colts.com! The photo galleries will always have a theme, ranging from game action to creative images around the Colts Complex!
While the NFL Draft is fresh on everyone’s mind, I thought it would be fitting to show you how I experienced the draft from inside the Colts complex! Draft weekend is a very exciting time for an NFL franchise, resulting in an “all hands on deck” approach to covering the draft from an in-house media standpoint. During the draft process all of the important decisions are always made behind closed doors. This draft day photo gallery will give you look behind those closed doors. I started my weekend shooting General Manager Ryan Grigson and Head Coach Chuck Pagano being interviewed about the draft in the Colts Pavilion. Most of my weekend was spent lurking in the shadows (not as creepy as it sounds) trying to capture the true candid moments that really convey the excitement and emotion of this big event. Moments before our first round pick was chosen, I was allowed entrance into the nerve center aka the “WAR ROOM” where all of the action was taking place. This allowed me to photograph Grigson on the phone with Bjoern Werner, our first round pick, minutes before it was officially announced live at Radio City Music Hall. Following that exciting phone call, the decision makers watched with the rest of the world as our pick was announced. The next morning, Werner was flown into Indianapolis for his first official tour of the Colts Complex! I tagged along on the tour to try to capture what Werner was experiencing during his visit. My hope is that this photo gallery will give you a peek behind those closed doors and a little insight into my NFL Draft day experience as the Colts Team Photographer.
If you have a great theme idea for a “Tuesday’s Top 10″ photo gallery, please let me know!
Posted in Colts Photography
The Indianapolis Colts today signed nine undrafted free agents including: tackle Emmett Cleary, kicker Brandon McManus, running back Dan Moore, running back Denodus O’Bryant, cornerback Sheldon Price, linebacker C.O. Prime, wide receiver Rodrick Rumble, wide receiver Lanear Sampson and cornerback Daxton Swanson. The team also waived running back Alvester Alexander, fullback Robert Hughes and linebacker Shawn Loiseau.
Cleary, 6-7, 313 pounds, played in all 48 games on the offensive line during his career at Boston College. Over his final two seasons, he started every game, playing right tackle his junior year and left tackle his senior year. In 2012, he blocked for an offense that averaged 259.3 passing yards per game, the most for the team since 2007. In 2011, he helped pave the way for six 100-yard rushing performances throughout the season.
McManus, 6-3, 201 pounds, holds Temple career records for points scored (338), field goals made (60) and attempted (83) and punting average (45.4). As a senior in 2012, he earned All-Big East first-team honors after leading the team in scoring (74) on 14-of-17 field goals and 32-of-33 extra points. He also averaged 45.1 yards per punt, pinned 17 punts inside the 20-yard line and had a long kick of 68 yards. McManus handled kickoff duties as well and recorded 40 touchbacks on 56 total kickoffs.
Moore, 5-11, 235 pounds, was a four-year letterman at Montana and compiled 924 rushing yards and 12 touchdowns in 38 career games. He also caught 26 passes for 338 yards and two touchdowns. As a junior in 2011, he posted career-high numbers, rushing 120 times for 430 yards and seven touchdowns, which ranked second on the team.
O’Bryant, 5-9, 194 pounds, was a two-time NAIA All-America selection, three-time all-conference choice and two-time conference MVP at Lindenwood University. He is the school’s all-time career leader in total touchdowns (62), rushing touchdowns (38), rushing yards (3,237) and kick return yards (1,377). O’Bryant also finished with 1,512 receiving yards, 6,126 all-purpose yards, 12 100-yard rushing games and three 100-yard receiving games.
Price, 6-2, 180 pounds, competed in 47 games (45 starts) at UCLA and totaled 157 tackles (123 solo), 21 passes defensed, five interceptions and two forced fumbles. He participated in the 2013 East-West Shrine Game following a senior season in which he started all 13 games and tied for the team lead with a career-high four interceptions.
Prime, 6-1, 255 pounds, started 38-of-45 games at Wagner College and registered 297 tackles (111 solo), 11.5 tackles for loss, 2.0 sacks, five forced fumbles, four fumble recoveries, seven passes defensed and two interceptions. As a senior, he started all 13 games and led the team in tackles (98), while posting two forced fumbles and an interception. As a junior, Prime finished second on the team and 10th in the Northeast Conference with 80 tackles.
Rumble, 6-2, 201 pounds, graduated as Idaho State’s all-time leading receiver with 223 receptions for 2,863 yards and 17 touchdowns. His 223 career catches were the fifth most by any active player in the FCS and his 2,863 yards ranked sixth. Rumble finished his collegiate career with a pair of 1,000-yard receiving seasons, including a record-setting campaign as a junior. In 2011, he set a school single-season record for receptions (112), while ranking second in receiving yards (1,348) and tied for sixth in receiving touchdowns (nine).
Sampson, 5-11, 205 pounds, played in all 51 games for Baylor and recorded 165 receptions for 1,905 receiving yards and 11 touchdowns. His 165 receptions rank fifth in school history and he finished his collegiate career with a 43-game reception streak, which ranked second nationally at the end of 2012. Sampson capped his collegiate career with a senior season which included career highs of 52 catches for 646 yards and six touchdowns.
Swanson, 5-11, 185 pounds, graduated Sam Houston State as the school’s all-time leader in interceptions (14), while finishing second in all-time interception return yards (228). In addition, he recorded 129 tackles (96 solo), 43 passes defensed, four forced fumbles and one fumble recovery in 41 career games. Over his final two seasons, he paced the Bearkats in interceptions and passes defensed. As a junior in 2011, Swanson set a school record, led the Southland Conference and ranked No. 3 nationally with eight interceptions. Following the season, he was named an Associated Press and CollegeSports.com All-America third-team selection.
Alexander was originally signed by the Chicago Bears as an undrafted free agent on April 29, 2012 before being waived on July 17. He was then signed by the Colts on August 15 and spent time on the practice squad during the season. On December 26, he was signed to the Tennessee Titans practice squad before later signing with the Colts to a reserve/future contract on January 9, 2013.
Hughes played in five games (one start) with the Colts in 2012 and recorded one rush for five yards and one reception for three yards. He was originally signed to the Colts practice squad on October 9, 2012 and was elevated to the active roster on October 29.
Loiseau was originally signed by the Houston Texans as an undrafted free agent on May 14, 2012 before being signed to the Colts practice squad on November 13, 2012. He was then signed to a reserve/future contract on January 7, 2013.
Posted in Colts Blog
At the top of the list for quality fullbacks comes the ability to be a successful blocker.
NFL offenses are continually evolving and while versatility at every position continues to grow, fullbacks around the league still must be able to pave the way for running backs behind them.
Stanley Havili knows exactly that.
“I think the biggest thing for a fullback to be good, is wanting to block,” Havili, the Colts new fullback said last week. “I want to do it. I want to go out there and open holes for the running backs.”
“At the same time I know, I can catch the ball and make plays with the ball in my hand. But first and foremost, I think I’m a good blocker.”
Over the past several years, Colts fans have seen players of virtually every shape and size line up at the fullback position.
Defensive linemen, linebackers, offensive linemen have all played the role of a fullback for the Colts but the addition of Havili should give Pep Hamilton’s offense a ‘true’ fullback.
Havili, who is entering his third NFL season after two years with the Eagles, excelled as a receiver during his time at USC (he is the Trojans’ all-time leading receiver at fullback) and that ability should be an ideal fit for Hamilton’s scheme.
The Colts are beginning their third week of OTAs and while the installation of the offense is still early, Havili likes what he’s seeing.
“This offense is a lot similar to USC’s offense and little things that we did with the Eagles, and more so Stanford and the power running game,” Havili said.
“It’s something that I’m familiar with so it’s not like I’m learning a whole new offense which I’m lucky. I think that’s the biggest part is that I understand the basics of this offense.”
Back in 2011, then Eagles Director of Player Personnel Ryan Grigson was apart of selecting Havili with the 240th overall selection.
After Havili was acquired via trade late last month, Grigson had a short message for the player he knows very well.
“(Grigson) basically just told me to come in here and “work hard,” Havili said.
“He knows what I’m capable of. If I come in, work hard, contribute on special teams than things will work out.”
Tags: Stanley Havili
Posted in Colts Blog
COLTS NEWS (LOCAL AND NATIONAL)
Indianapolis Colts luxury suites cited as Indiana lawmakers limit new CIB taxes
Indianapolis Colts’ Pat McAfee adds $5,000 to reward in Boone County hit-and-run case
Pop Your Way Into The Pacers Playoffs With Pat McAfee
Colts deal disappointing first-round pick Jerry Hughes to Buffalo for LB Kelvin Sheppard
Colts Daily Links: Analysts lukewarm on team’s draft, ‘hard to see it all falling into place’
Indianapolis Colts’ best undrafted free agents: No. 9, returner Aaron Bailey
Indianapolis Colts’ best undrafted free agents: No. 10, safety Melvin Bullitt
What’s not to like about Colts’ draft class?
Colts offseason has look, feel of upgrade
In their words: Colts picks on Bo, trouble, Dungy
Colts hoping for more high marks on draft picks
NFL: North Penn’s Brandon McManus signs with Indianapolis Colts
Bills trade LB Sheppard to Colts for LB Hughes
Colts deal Hughes for Kelvin Sheppard
Colts offer reward in hit-and-run search
Colts, Bills exchange linebackers
Draft review: Indianapolis Colts
Colts shuffle much maligned Hughes off to Buffalo
George Bremer: Colts’ home finale holds keys to future
Colts owner Jim Irsay, kicker Pat McAfee boost reward in hit-and-run that killed Anita Wernsing, 78
All Means Possible
Dream not denied by language barrier
Open Mini-Camp Practice at Lucas Oil Stadium
Indianapolis Colts Acquire LB-Kelvin Sheppard in a Trade with the Buffalo Bills in Exchange for LB-Jerry Hughes
Colts Owner & CEO Jim Irsay and P-Pat McAfee Contribute to Reward for Arrest and Conviction of Hit-and-Run Driver in Death of Fayette, Ind. Grandmother
True to the Board
AFC SOUTH BLOG
David Caldwell ready to hire in front office
Titans host Idonije, Winston on visits
Texans just missed on Arthur Brown
Reiterating: Jaguars don’t covet Tebow
Assessing AFC South draft trades
On Houston Texans DE J.J. Watt’s fame
Jaguars’ undrafted rookies
Monday Morning Quarterback
Bills swap LBs with Colts for versatility
Noisy Courtship, Quiet Breakup
Why NBA center Jason Collins is coming out now
NFL warns against gay jokes, talk
Dolphins: Mike Wallace’s remarks “do not reflect the views” of the organization
Collin Klein reportedly to be Houston Texans QB
Sam Montgomery: ‘Effort was not needed’ sometimes against weaker teams
Tennessee Titans QB Jake Locker talks about team’s draft class
Are the Jaguars interested? ‘Plans do not include Tim Tebow’
Jaguars dismiss Terry McDonough, 2 others
Reviewing ESPN and NFL Network’s coverage
Report: Tyrann Mathieu won’t sign deal without guaranteed money
Tags: aaron bailey, Arthur Brown, brandon mcmanus, bryant mckinnie, buffalo bills, daily clips, david caldwell, eli manning, eric winston, houston texans, indianapolis colts, isreal idonjie, j.j. watt, jacksonville jaguars, jake locker, jason collins, jeremy ebert, Jerry Hughes, Jim Irsay, kelvin sheppard, kyle long, lance briggs, lgbt rights, lucas oil stadium, malcolm williams, melvin bullitt, miami dolphins collin klein, mike wallace, new england patriots, new york jets, NFL Draft, pat mcafee, ryan nassib, sam montgomery, tennessee titans, terry mcdonough, tim tebow, Tony Dungy, tyrann mathieu
Posted in Colts Blog
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS ACQUIRE LB-KELVIN SHEPPARD IN A TRADE WITH THE BUFFALO BILLS IN EXCHANGE FOR LB-JERRY HUGHESPosted by on April 29, 2013 – 1:51 pm
The Indianapolis Colts today acquired linebacker Kelvin Sheppard in a trade with the Buffalo Bills in exchange for linebacker Jerry Hughes.
“We wish nothing but the best for Jerry in Buffalo,” said General Manager Ryan Grigson. “He’s a talented guy that did everything we asked of him. At the same time, we are very pleased to be getting a young linebacker who has been a productive starter in this league.”
Sheppard, 6-2, 244 pounds, was originally a third round (68th overall) draft selection by Buffalo in 2011. In 32 career games (24 starts), he has totaled 138 tackles (95 solo), 2.0 sacks, two passes defensed and one fumble recovery. Sheppard recorded his first career sack in a 2012 Week 2 victory against Kansas City and added his second of the season in a loss against Seattle.
As a three-year starter at LSU, Sheppard completed his collegiate career ranked ninth in school history with 311 tackles. He posted 100-plus tackle campaigns in both his junior and senior seasons. In 2010, Sheppard was voted an All-SEC first-team selection after compiling 116 stops, which ranked third in the conference.
Hughes was a first round (31st overall) draft choice by the Colts in 2010. In three seasons with the team, he totaled 61 tackles (44 solo), 5.0 sacks and one pass defensed.
Posted in Colts Blog
Monday following the NFL Draft is normally known for a day when teams release names of undrafted free agents.
But for the Colts, the news came a bit early when Indianapolis acquired Buffalo linebacker Kelvin Sheppard for outside linebacker Jerry Hughes.
How does this trade impact the Colts?
Sheppard, 6’2″ and 244 pounds, was a 2011 third round draft pick of the Buffalo Bills and the LSU product has started 24 games over the two seasons.
The Colts are getting a productive inside linebacker (150 tackles in two seasons) who adds some depth to a position that is trying to replace backup Moise Fokou (46 tackles in 2012).
Leading tackler Jerrell Freeman returns to the lineup in 2013 and the other inside spot was shared by Pat Angerer and Kavell Conner last year.
Mario Harvey, who was used in goal line packages in 2012, also returns at the inside linebacker position.
The outside linebacker position is still in very good hands thanks to some offseason moves and a Pro Bowl returnee.
Robert Mathis will obviously start on one side of the defense with the other starter likely coming from a pair of newcomers.
Free agent addition Erik Walden is the new No. 93 in town and head coach Chuck Pagano has raved about the former Packers’ ability to set the edge.
New first round draft pick Bjoern Werner will get his first crack as a standup linebacker in Indianapolis and Colts staff believe he can play the RUSH or SAM linebacker position.
Other outside linebackers on the roster include free agent signee Lawrence Sidbury, Justin Hickman and Jake Killeen.
Posted in Colts Blog
COLTS OWNER & CEO JIM IRSAY AND P-PAT MCAFEE CONTRIBUTE TO REWARD FOR ARREST AND CONVICTION OF HIT-AND-RUN DRIVER IN DEATH OF FAYETTE, IND. GRANDMOTHERPosted by on – 11:34 am
Indianapolis Colts Owner & CEO Jim Irsay has pledged $10,000 and punter Pat McAfee has added $5,000 to the reward, which is being offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of a driver who struck and killed 78-year-old Anita Wernsing of Fayette, Ind. The driver left the scene following the incident.
Wernsing was leaving Mt. Tabor Primitive Church on the 7000 block of South State Road 267 on November 25, 2012 when she was struck. Boone County Sheriff’s Department investigators said that the vehicle that hit Wernsing was a dark SUV that was traveling northbound on 267.
Police have asked anyone with information on the case to call them at 765-482-1412 or send the department an email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tags: anita wernsing, Jim Irsay, pat mcafee
Posted in Colts Blog
Scout.com: 20 Best Undrafted Players
Secrecy helps Bills land E.J. Manuel, perhaps long-awaited return to postseason
Jaguars add 23 undrafted rookie free agents
Titans scored big in draft
Almost no veteran player is safe following NFL Draft
Tags: buffalo bills, daily clips, e.j. manuel, eli manning, Hugh Thornton, indianapolis colts, jacksonville jaguars, john boyett, john idzik, new england patriots, new york giants, NFL Draft, pittsburgh steelers, san diego charger, tennessee titans
Posted in Colts Blog
Here is a rundown of some national draft analysts offering up a synopsis of the 2013 Colts draft class:
Mel Kiper, ESPN.com:
Bjoern Werner lined up as a 4-3 defensive end at Florida State, and while productive, lacked elite athleticism or size at the position. The Colts will be looking to stand him up in the mold of Bryce Paup and Jarret Johnson, and I think he can develop into a productive player. He just doesn’t have that one elite trait, and I think he’ll need to find his way a little bit. That said, I had outside linebacker as a top need for this team, and he qualifies. Hugh Thornton was a good pick at No. 86. Pretty good value, and I had guard as the No. 2 need for this team. He has a chance to start this season. Khaled Holmes is also a future starter at center if he can stay healthy. Montori Hughes is an interesting player. If he hadn’t been forced to leave Tennessee, we’re looking at a guy who could have gone a lot higher. Give him another year of development and you might have something. One pick I think could help now and be a great option for this offense is Kerwynn Williams. He’s a speedster, and if they can find him touches you’re going to see some explosive plays. Not in love with the first pick, and I’m pretty surprised the Colts didn’t get a cornerback or a wide receiver — I saw both as needs. But they got two of the more intriguing players in the draft with Hughes and Williams.
Bjoern Werner is a player with few holes, though the Colts are banking on his ability to convert to outside linebacker. If you like CB Vontae Davis, trading the second-round pick last summer was a good move. The rest of the picks appear to be guys who will fight for backup jobs. GRADE: C
Their top pick, Bjoern Werner, has a long way to go before he can be a reliable 3-4 OLB — he was a better fit for a 4-3. And just about every pick here comes with some hesitation. G Hugh Thornton is pretty raw, DT Montori Hughes carries significant red flags and S John Boyett has issues with both knees. Hard to see it all falling into place for this group. Grades: C
Best pick: The Colts traded a 2014 fourth-round pick to get to draft Tennessee-Martin nose tackle Montori Hughes in the fifth round for a reason. The former Vols player has a chance to be their nose inside for a long time.
Third-day gem: Sixth-round safety John Boyett was a good choice that late in the draft. He should be a good special-teams player early in his career.
Analysis: I have been impressed with most of what second-year general manager Ryan Grigson has done, but this wasn’t a “wow” draft for me. Call it solid.
Floyd Engel: (C ) They were better than anybody anticipated last season because of QB Andrew Luck. So waiting until the third and fourth rounds to shore up the line seems idiotic.
Alex Marvez: (C+) They hope they’ve found the replacement for Dwight Freeney at outside linebacker in Florida State’s Bjoern Werner. Illinois guard Hugh Thornton (third round) and Southern Cal center Khaled Holmes (fourth) could quickly push for snaps on an offensive line that allowed Luck to get hit too many times in his rookie season.
Peter Schrager: (B) The Colts didn’t make any sexy moves this year. They stayed the course. I like the Werner pick and think he went just about where he was expected to. Thornton’s a big body who can get on the field in this fall.
Posted in Colts Blog
COLTS NEWS (LOCAL AND NATIONAL)
2013 NFL Draft: Indianapolis Colts brass delighted with bevy of draftees
Colts trade way into 5th round, grab Tenn.-Martin DT Montori Hughes
Colts pick Utah State RB Kerwynn Williams in 7th round
Colts add USC center Khaled Holmes with 4th round pick
Peyton Manning says October game vs. Colts not on his mind yet
Justice Cunningham is 2013 NFL Draft’s ‘Mr. Irrelevant’
Instincts key Colts safety Boyett
Hughes brings troubled past to Colts
Colts continue O-line revamping
Five more become Colts
Instant Reaction: TE-Justice Cunningham with the No. 254 pick
Instant Reaction: RB-Kerwynn Williams with the No. 230 pick
Instant Reaction: S-John Boyett with the No. 192 pick
Instant Reaction: DT-Montori Hughes with the No. 139 pick
C/OG Khaled Holmes with the No. 121 pick
Grigson finds trench player in a former wrestler, Thornton
Harnish looks back on eventful final day of 2012 NFL Draft
Thornton’s toughness continually praised by draft analysts
AFC SOUTH BLOG
The work left to do in the AFC South
AFC South draft analysis
Wooten’s best quality for Titans: speed
The Texans’ four sixth-rounders
Jaguars now have options at safety
Titans may need run downs from Edwards
Denard Robinson: Offensive weapon?
Texans grow LB depth with Williams
Titans continue to add to O-line
Ace Sanders could give Jaguars a jolt
On the Jaguars’ restraint at quarterback
Eagles take Matt Barkley at No. 98
Source: LB Shaun Phillips to Denver
LeGarrette Blount dealt to Pats
QB Ryan Nassib goes to Giants
The 2013 draft’s winners, losers
Five best, worst matches of the draft
2013 NFL Draft: Breaking down winning and worrisome picks
Stephen Ross: Dolphins better without Tony Sparano
2013 NFL Draft: Winners and losers; rookie GMs do well
NFL Draft: Fraternal brothers of rehab helping Lattimore
Big weekend for the Packers and other thoughts on Day 3 of draft
Tags: ace sanders, bill belichick, Chandler Harnish, chicago bears, daily clips, denard robinson, Denver Broncos, Geno Smith, green bay packers, houston texans, Hugh Thornton, indianapolis colts, jacksonville jaguars, john boyett, john idzik, jon bostic, justice cunningham, kerwynn williams, khaled holmes, khaseem greene, lavar edwards, legarrette blount, marcus lattimore, Matt Barkley, miami dolphins, Montori Hughes, Mr. Irrelevant, new england patriots, new york giants, new york jets, NFL Draft, Peyton Manning, philadelphia eagles, ryan grigson, ryan nassib, Seattle Seahawks, shaun phillips, tennessee titans, trevardo williams
Posted in Colts Blog