Indianapolis Colts

Indianapolis Colts Football

Day Eight Impressions: Competition behind DHB, new names at ILB and Greg Toler returns

Posted by Kevin Bowen on August 5, 2013 – 4:58 pm

The Colts spent most of Monday afternoon’s practice drilling specific situations (Hail Mary, last second field goals, getting out of bounds, etc).

During the live portion of practice though, Andrew Luck caught fire early on, connecting on his first 10 passes.

Here are three takeaways from day eight…

DHB’s injury “not serious”: Darrius Heyward-Bey did not practice on Monday afternoon, watching from behind the receivers group.

The Colts said the injury is “not serious” following practice but without DHB in the lineup the door is open for some significant receiver reps.

T.Y. Hilton added yet another strong day of practice to his impressive training camp. Hilton caught four of Luck’s first seven passes on Monday.

Griff Whalen and Nathan Palmer should see their reps increase with DHB sidelined. Also, Jeremy Kelley and Lanear Sampson have had a nice first week of camp.

Inside Linebacker spot filled with competition: Colts fans were checking their rosters frequently on Monday with some different names sliding into the inside linebackers spot.

Jerrell Freeman was sidelined with a shoulder injury on Monday, which gave some first team reps to Justin Hickman.

Last year, Hickman played extensively on the outside but this year he has also been taking reps at inside and was with the first unit for a quite a while on Monday.

Other names that Colts defensive coordinator Greg Manusky mentioned for the starting spot next to Freeman includes Kavell Conner, Kelvin Sheppard, Pat Angerer and Josh McNary.

Cornerbacks welcome back Greg Toler: Back with the first unit on Monday afternoon was Colts cornerback Greg Toler.

While Toler was back with the first unit, it was Vontae Davis and Darius Butler who both added to their numerous camp pass deflections.

After Davis was victim of a terrific catch by Reggie Wayne during red zone drills, he bounced back the following play knocking a potential touchdown away from the Colts six-time Pro Bowl receiver.

Earlier in practice it was Butler leaping high in the air to knock away a pass that would have been a significant gain for Wayne.




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Posted by Kevin Bowen on May 20, 2013 – 7:35 am

The names and stories are all over the Colts locker room.

There’s Jerrell Freeman who turned three years in the Canadian Football League into setting a Colts season record in tackles last season.

Further down the wall of lockers is Justin Hickman who’s roots also extend into the CFL.

Jeremy Kelley knows those names and Ryan Grigson’s pedigree for exploring all options in completing a full roster was something that intrigued the 6-6, 225-pound wide receiver to sign with the Colts.

“Once I get here, I find out that there’s a couple of more guys that were under the radar type guys that took the road less traveled,” Kelley said.

“It’s a good feeling to see some familiar faces but also at the same time they believe in those guys. Those guys do have a shot. It’s proof and I believe that I’m one of those guys that just had to go through the ringer to get to where I’m at.”

With the frame of a slender tight end, Kelley brings something to the receiver position that hasn’t been seen in Indianapolis.

The Colts receiving corps is filled with electric, jitter-bug type targets and Kelley feels he brings a dimension that can only add to the diversity of the group.

“That’s what I kept hearing when I came out here–Indy’s never had big wideouts,” Kelley said.

“I feel like I’m big enough, fast enough to bring a change. Whether they want to use me as a red zone threat, whether they want to use me as an inside, big target across the middle, whether they want to use me to block for screens, being bigger, being stronger, I think that makes me accessible to do more things.”

Kelley, who has spent the last two seasons in the Arena Football League following a stint in the CFL, participated in the Colts rookie minicamp from May 10-12.

When the first rookie minicamp practice concluded, there was the thump of the jugs machine running near midfield as Kelley was the lone member to stay after for extra reps.

The following day, there was Kelley again the lone rookie in the Colts locker room with iPad in hand, dissecting a playbook he hopes to still be in come September.

“It’s necessary, especially a guy in my position, being a free agent coming out of Arena, Canadian leagues and what not,” Kelley said of the extra work.

“It’s just perfecting your craft. For me, it gives me that confidence on the field and now I can go out and I can trust what I’m doing and just play.”

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