INDIANAPOLIS –Now we move into the trenches, where all eyes will be fixated on the three interior spots.
The weapons are present all over the Colts skill positions and, with improved line play in 2014, the offense has a chance to become one of the league’s best.
Here’s a look at the offensive line burning questions heading into training camp.
All signs are pointing to the time is now for Khaled Holmes to become the Colts starting center.
Sure, Phil Costa retired and the Colts did not draft a center in 2014, but a lot of credit should go to Holmes for putting himself in a position where the staff feels more than comfortable to have him snapping to
With a reshaped body, Holmes enters his second NFL training camp healthy and with the physical stature that he was looking for heading into this offseason.
The next step for Holmes comes in showing the mental capacity to keep a Colts offensive line on the same page once the live bullets start flying.
Life in Anderson means the pads will be strapped on, which is a period of time that Holmes missed last season due to an early camp injury.
The backing of Holmes has come from every avenue this offseason and the time is clearly now for the Colts 2013 fourth-round pick to be that “captain” of the five-man offensive line unit.
STAT TO NOTE: Holmes competed in just 12 offensive snaps for the Colts last season. For example,
How will the crowded guard positions play themselves out?
Along with the safety spot next to
Here’s a look at the four most likely candidates for first team reps.
STAT TO NOTE: Thomas was expected to be a starter in 2013 but the injury bug bit him hard, on two occasions, in Week Two and his season ended after just 70 offensive snaps.
So much talk is centered (no pun intended) on the interior of the Colts offensive line that we seem to forget just how durable, and solid, Anthony Castonzo and Gosder Cherilus were in 2013.
Castonzo played 1,065 offensive snaps (99.6 percent) and Cherilus logged 1,068 offensive snaps (99.9).
When Cherilus hit the free agent market in 2013, Castonzo might have put in a word or two on coaxing his good friend from Boston College to Indy.
It clearly worked and their value in 2013 should not be overlooked.
Offensive line coach Joe Gilbert certainly doesn’t take those two for granted.
Gilbert told a great story earlier this offseason about the competitiveness of Castonzo and Cherilus.
“It was funny when we got up in one of the games, neither one of them wanted to come out,” Gilbert says. “One of them had to come out because I’m being told to take one of them out.
“As a coach, that’s what you really want. You want guys that want to be in there and don’t want to give up their spot. To play 18 games and not miss a snap except when we were up is unheard of and, knock on wood, hopefully they can do the same thing next year.”
STAT TO NOTE: Castonzo and Cherilus missed a total of five offensive snaps in 2013.
ICYMI: Quarterback Burning Questions