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Colts offensive line coach Joe Gilbert ready to watch his unit strap on the pads

Posted Jul 30, 2013

Intro: The hitting will be ramped up a bit on Tuesday afternoon with the Colts having their first padded practice of training camp. Offensive line coach Joe Gilbert is anxious to see his unit get physical in the trenches.

INDIANAPOLIS – The Anderson University practice fields will have a little extra noise coming from them Tuesday afternoon.

The pads are being strapped on the Colts for the first time in the 2013 training camp and that’s music to offensive line coach Joe Gilbert’s ears.

“Obviously the minicamp part of it without pads, you’re working on your technique and your assignments and that type of thing. When we put the pads on you’re going to see a whole different level of competitiveness and physicalness,” Gilbert said.

How the offensive line is going to shake out over the next three weeks is one of the more interesting storylines of the Colts 2013 training camp.

Gilbert is thrilled with the mix of veterans and youngsters across the line and is confident that come Sept. 8, he will have the right group.

There’s going to be a great competition going into this camp. It’s going to be a great thing to watch unfold,” the first-year offensive line coach said.

“At the end of it, I feel pretty good that we’re going to have eight guys that we’re going to dress on Sundays and go out there and win some games.”

 

This offseason, it was a point of emphasis to improve in the trenches.

Ryan Grigson and his personnel department went out and found a couple of veterans that bring some impressive frames to the offensive line.

Two areas in particular have caught Gilbert’s eye on why he believes the line has made progress.

For what we want to do and be a physical football team and run the ball, it’s going to be advantageous to us with the guys we got in size-wise. The other thing I’m very excited about is the level of knowledge that these guys possess,” Gilbert said.

“Bringing in Gos (Gosder Cherilus) and Donald (Thomas), two very smart football players to go in there with Samson (Satele) and Mike (McGlynn) and AC (Anthony Castonzo) and Joe Reitz, all those guys are extremely football smart. So that allows us to do more which is huge.”

It’s no secret the Colts want to be a more efficient running team.

Come late afternoon on Tuesday, the entire roster will huddle near the goal line for 11-on-11 running drills in full pads.

The hooting and hollering will be loud with the clanging of pads another indication that the season is quickly approaching.

Gilbert loves hearing Pep Hamilton talk about the need to establish the running game and the Colts offensive line coach is eager to win the line of scrimmage.

“If you look at Pep’s background and what he did, we are going to run the ball. We’re going to hang our hat on it,” Gilbert said.

“I really feel if we can line up in a third-and-medium or third-and-short, we’re going to have a chance to be very successful where Andrew (Luck) takes the game over. We got to do our part on first and second down.”

 

 

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