INDIANAPOLIS – The Colts had a quieter Thursday practice following three straight sessions in full pads.
Now, the attention turns towards Saturday’s preseason opener in Buffalo, as the Colts will be off from Grand Park until next Tuesday.
Here is what was learned at Thursday’s 10th practice of camp:
- Matt Ryan finished Thursday afternoon 10-of-17 with completions to the following guys: Michael Pittman (3), Parris Campbell (2), Nyheim Hines (2), Mo Alie-Cox (1), Kylen Granson (1), Alec Pierce (1). Campbell had a very nice start to practice with a couple of first-down receptions. Through 10 practices, Ryan is 84-of-125 in the full teamwork. Ryan’s completed his passes to the following guys: Michael Pittman (24), Kylen Granson (12), Mo Alie-Cox (10), Jonathan Taylor (9), Nyheim Hines (9), Parris Campbell (8), Alec Pierce (4), Drew Ogletree (3), Ashton Dulin (3), Dezmon Patmon (1), Keke Coutee (1).
- The drops quieted down on Thursday, with the Colts not in full pads. Nyheim Hines and Jelani Woods both had drops though.
- Who should be on the “keep in bubble” list for the Colts preseason games? Some potential names for me: Jonathan Taylor, Michael Pittman, Yannick Nkgaoue, DeForest Buckner, Stephon Gilmore. Frank Reich gave every indication that Parris Campbell and Julian Blackmon—who are both coming off serious injuries last year—will play in the preseason. Tyquan Lewis, who tore his patellar last October, might be held back in preseason games though, according to Reich.
- The Colts had their third kicking session of camp on Thursday. It was Rodrigo Blankenship winning the day, going a perfect 5-of-5, with distances of 28 yards, 33, 40, 47 and 56. Jake Verity made his first four from the same distances but he was wide right from 56 yards. Both kickers are now 13-of-15 at Grand Park.
- Speaking of kicker, it sounds like the Colts will split placekicking reps for Saturday’s game, with Rodrigo Blankenship taking one half and Jake Verity the other half.
- It was another solid day from rookie Drew Ogletree. The 6th round pick flashed on a couple of impressive catches during the first 7-on-7 session of the day. Matt Ryan first gave Ogletree a chance about 20 yards down the field and the rookie delivered by breaking free from Rodney McLeod (who was flagged for pass interference on the play) to make the contested catch. A few plays later, Ogletree made a one-handed catch with his left hand hauling in a pass from Nick Foles. When it was time for Ogletree to check out, even Shaquille Leonard offered the rookie a high-five. With Jelani Woods dropping another pass on Thursday, it was a clear reminder that Ogletree is ahead of the guy drafted 3 rounds before him on the depth chart.
- The first play of Thursday’s 11-on-11 period included some more disguising with Nyheim Hines and Jonathan Taylor on the field together. A plea for the 2022 Colts: in every short yardage and goal-to-go situation, the duo of Hines and Taylor need to be on the field. For an offense that isn’t getting mobility from their quarterback, putting 21 and 28 out there would help in the unpredictability forced upon a defense.
- We are 10 practices into Grand Park and the Colts have had the starting offensive line intact for every single practice. That’s a quintet of LT-Matt Pryor, LG-Quenton Nelson, C-Ryan Kelly, RG-Danny Pinter, RT-Braden Smith. Ryan Kelly missing one period of 11-on-11 drills is the only rep that those 5 haven’t been together. Again, unlike last year, the Colts have had an incredibly healthy start to training camp.
- Quenton Nelson had a strong “no comment” when asked on Thursday about his pending contract extension/wanting to stay in Indianapolis long-term. This will be something to keep an eye on before the season opener arrives next month. Nelson was pretty adamant on Thursday about how “freeing” it’s been to go through a healthy training camp, after breaking his foot early on at Grand Park last year.
- Here is how the starting offense looked on Thursday: QB-Matt Ryan, RB-Jonathan Taylor, RB-Nyheim Hines, WR-Michael Pittman, WR-Parris Campbell, TE-Mo Alie-Cox, LT-Matt Pryor, LG-Quenton Nelson, C-Ryan Kelly, RG-Danny Pinter, RT-Braden Smith.
- Here is how the starting defense looked on Thursday: DE-Yannick Ngakoue, DT-Grover Stewart, DT-DeForest Buckner, DE-Kwity Paye, LB-Zaire Franklin, LB-Bobby Okereke, CB-Kenny Moore, CB-Stephon Gilmore, S-Julian Blackmon, S-Rodney McLeod.
- Guys that stood out at Thursday’s practice for a variety of reasons: LB-JoJo Domann, K-Rodrigo Blankenship, WR-Parris Campbell.
Injury Report: The following players remain on the PUP or non-football injury list: LB-Shaquille Leonard (back/ankle), WR-Mike Strachan (knee). The following players also did not practice on Thursday: DT-Chris Williams (left foot), OT-Dennis Kelly (knee), LB-Forrest Rhyne (undisclosed), WR-DeMichael Harris (undisclosed), CB-Anthony Chelsey (undisclosed).
Weekly Camp Schedule
-Friday: Off day
-Saturday: Preseason opener at Buffalo, 4:00 kick
-Sunday Off day
-Monday: Off day
-Tuesday: 12:20 – 1:20 Practice
-Wednesday: 12:20 – 1:55 Joint practice with Lions
-Thursday: 12:20 – 1:35 Joint practice with Lions