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
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Posted in Colts Blog
For almost the entire first three games of the season, Colts outside linebackers Justin Hickman and Jerry Hughes were apart of filling the void missed by Dwight Freeney’s absence.
With the return of Freeney to the lineup against the Packers, those minutes for Hickman and Hughes seemed to be dwindling.
However, life in the NFL is lived on a week-by-week and the loss of outside linebacker Robert Mathis means the duo will continue to play significant roles.
Next man up?
“That’s what coach Pagano has been teaching since day one so I just have to come ready on Sunday,” Hickman said.
The past two games, Hickman has come ready to play contributing five tackles from his outside backer position.
Hughes has been productive as well with 10 tackles on the season including a sack against the Vikings.
The two were able to play more than normal during the regular season as the Colts rested Freeney and Mathis and their combined 21 years of NFL experience.
With the Pro Bowl duo in the lineup against the Packers, the Colts defense sacked Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers five times on Sunday.
“We haven’t had Robert (Mathis) and Dwight (Freeney) out there at the same time except for six plays in the first game, and of course we got them out there in this past game,” defensive coordinator Greg Manusky said. “It’s always a pinch and that’s what the National Football League is. Those backup players have got to step up and they have to perform at a high level and that’s what we’re looking for.”
The scrip has flipped a bit with Hickman and Hughes now opposite Freeney, not Mathis, on Sunday.
Freeney will obviously miss Mathis, who has five sacks in four games this season, against the Jets and he knows that he will need to be a bit more vocal this weekend.
“I think the big thing is just communicating more with the other guy, whoever it is on the opposite side,” Freeney said.
“When Rob’s out there, there is not much that needs to be said. He understands what to do, where to be, we kind of mesh together pretty well. Whoever is going to be on the other side, it’s going to be kind of a rotation deal probably. I’ll probably and communicating a little more.”
Hickman knows the resume of the man missing from the Colts defense on Sunday and he looks at this weekend as simply another opportunity for a 27-year old man who made his NFL debut this season.
“I can’t fill his shoes obviously he’s been doing it for over a decade,” Hickman said. “I’ve got to come in, do my assignments, play hard and try and make some plays.”
Tags: Dwight Freeney, Jerry Hughes, Justin Hickman, robert mathis
Posted in Colts Blog
Chuck Pagano heads into his first home game as head coach of the Indianapolis Colts pleased with where his team is at less than 48 hours away from kickoff.
The Colts wrapped up practice on Friday morning and one final walk-through is all that stands between the Vikings and 1:00 p.m. on Sunday.
“I felt like we had an excellent week of practice in preparation for this ballgame. I thought the guys came in and did a nice job of putting the last ballgame behind them and then moving forward,” Pagano said.
“We had three great days of practice. We’ve got our mock game tomorrow and then get ready to tee it up on Sunday.”
Pagano addressed some injury news heading into Sunday’s contest and announced that outside linebacker Dwight Freeney will miss the Vikings game due to an ankle injury.
The team will count on a trio of outside linebackers in Mario Addison, Justin Hickman and Jerry Hughes in Freeney’s absence.
“Someone’s going to step up and fill in,” Pagano said. “You’ve got a player of (Freeney’s) caliber that’s not on the field, that always hurts. That’s like not having Pat (Angerer). We’d all love to have Pat Angerer out there every snap. But injuries happen, so it’s next man up.”
At the wide receiver position, Austin Collie (concussion) not practice on Thursday and is questionable heading into the Vikings.
Rookie wide receiver T.Y. Hilton is back from a shoulder injury and is expected to play on Sunday.
Along with Hilton, it looks like the Colts might get some good news along the injury front in regards to offensive tackle Winston Justice (concussion).
“(Justice) went the last two days, he’s still questionable, but anticipating,” Pagano said. “He’s been getting better every day, feeling great out there. So anticipate him being ready and able to go. We’ll list him as questionable, but he’s looked good the last couple days.”
With the injury situation aside, the Colts can count on having the home crowd behind them on Sunday.
The Colts were 2-0 in the preseason at Lucas Oil Stadium and ever since taking the job in January, Pagano hasn’t shied away from talking about the importance of protecting your home turf.
“You’ve got to take advantage of home field,” Pagano said. “I told them early on, you win your home games and split on the road you’re probably going to make the playoffs every year. There may be an exception here or there, but you’ve got to win your home games.”
“We’ve got a great fan base, great venue in Lucas Oil to play in. It’s paramount that we go out, start fast, play extremely well and get a win.”
Tags: austin collie, chuck pagano, Dwight Freeney, Jerry Hughes, Justin Hickman, Mario Addison, T.Y. Hilton, winston justice
Posted in Colts Blog
Not many questions stir up a reaction out of Colts safety Antoine Bethea.
But even the ever stoic Bethea cracked a bit of a smile on Tuesday afternoon when commenting on the play of outside linebacker Jerry Hughes this preseason.
“Jerry has an extreme amount of talent. Seeing him in this system, he’s just flourishing. He’s out there making plays, making sacks, dropping in coverage, making tackles,” Bethea said.
Those same sentiments echoed throughout the Colts locker room on Tuesday as teammates glowed when talking about the production that No. 92 has had in opposing backfields the past two weeks.
“With Jerry coming in and not having the success that he probably thought he would have early on, and for him to start getting that success now, it’s always good to see,” Powers said.
Hughes has seen significant playing time from his new outside linebacker position this preseason and has thrived in his new role.
He led the Colts with seven tackles on Sunday evening and upped his team-leading sack total to three.
“It’s helped my confidence a lot, tremendously,” Hughes said of the preseason. “First two years, I wasn’t really doing much of anything so even though it’s still the preseason, just going out there and helping the team win, going out there and playing with the guys is helping out.”
During his time at Texas Christian University, Hughes was a successful pass-rushing defensive end. Just like Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis, the move to outside linebacker was a little foreign.
Seeing different sight lines is one of the major differences Hughes said of switching positions.
For Hughes, the on-the-field talent hasn’t gone anywhere, but it’s learning to become a complete NFL player that he is starting to figure out.
“Coming in from college, you get to get away with a lot more things, being a college player versus being a pro. Being a pro, it’s a 9-5 job,” Hughes said.
“You’ve got to come in early, you’ve got to put in extra work to get (fluent) with the film, get (fluent) with the playbook, things like that. Once you kind of get that down and you’re able to make that transition, things will come real smooth.”
Head coach Chuck Pagano has seen his fair share of standout outside linebackers during his days of working in 3-4 defenses. Pagano knows the physical talent is there for Hughes and the more comfortable he becomes in the system, the more he should be able to produce.
“I think he’s just flourishing right now doing the things we’re asking him to do,” Pagano said. “He’s getting better at playing the run and doing what it takes to set the edge and he’s got natural pass-rush ability.”
Tags: antoine bethea, chuck pagano, Dwight Freeney, jerraud powers, Jerry Hughes, LaVon Brazill, robert mathis
Posted in Colts Blog
When looking at linebacker Pat Angerer’s statistical numbers from last season, most would call it a successful year.
After leading the league in tackles for much of the 2011 season, Angerer finished fourth in the NFL with 146 stops.
That is all fine and well with Angerer, but it’s the number in the win column that is most important to him in 2012.
“I’m still going to try to make tackles, but I want to win. I don’t really care if I have any tackles as long as we keep winning and playing hard,” Angerer said.
While many defenders are learning a new position this season, the switch for Angerer hasn’t been as drastic.
Lining up next to Angerer in the middle of the 3-4 defense has been fellow third-year linebacker Kavell Conner.
The linebacker duo entered the NFL back in 2010 and have been consistent starters for the Colts each of the last two seasons.
With former Pro Bowl defensive ends flanking them on the outside, Angerer said it’s nice to have a familiar face next to him in the middle.
“Kavell (Conner) is a good guy, and I always love playing next to him. I’m glad that he’s healthy. That dude can hit. He smoked me yesterday, did you guys see that? Oh man, I’ve never been hit like that before in my life,” Angerer said following Tuesday morning’s walk-through.
Another new face, and member of that 2010 draft class, is Jerry Hughes.
Playing in an outside linebacker position, Hughes has more than caught the eye of his teammates during training camp.
“He’s just an unbelievable athlete. That guy can do just about anything,” Angerer said of Hughes. “Watching him in linebacker drills, we’ve been doing those for years and he just started doing it, and he was better than all of us at it. I mean that guy is just a freak. It’ll be exciting to see what he ends up doing.”
It’s that versatility of so many different players that excites Angerer about getting back on the field this season.
He knows the individual numbers will come is way but at the end of the day the longer the season goes, the happier No. 51 will be.
“There are so many things that we can do; it could be a 3-4, 4-3, 5-2, it can be anything. There are so many good athletes out there on the defense that anybody is going to make a big play. It definitely is exciting.”
Tags: Jerry Hughes, kavell conner, pat angerer
Posted in Colts Blog