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Colts 2022 Training Camp Preview: Wide Receivers

The Colts return a 1,000-yard talent, added a highly touted second-round pick and will feature strong competition under first-year wide receivers coach Reggie Wayne. Check out what to watch for from the Colts' wide receivers ahead of the start of training camp on July 27. 

Who's In

  • Alec Pierce (drafted in second round)
  • Kekoa Crawford (signed as undrafted free agent)
  • Ethan Fernea (signed as undrafted free agent)
  • Samson Nacua (signed as undrafted free agent)
  • Michael Young Jr. (signed as undrafted free agent)

The Colts used their first pick in the 2022 NFL Draft on Pierce, the long, athletic vertical threat who snagged 52 passes for 884 with eight touchdowns in 2021 for Cincinnati. The Colts' other additions have been undrafted free agents, including Young – a teammate of Pierce's at Cincinnati who happens to be Joseph Addai's nephew.

Also, this list is just limited to players – but it'd be silly to not recognize another big addition in Reggie Wayne, the Ring of Honor member who was hired to coach the team's wide receivers earlier this year.

Who's Out

  • T.Y. Hilton (free agent)
  • Zach Pascal (signed with Philadelphia Eagles)

Hilton remains an unsigned free agent after catching 23 passes for 331 yards with three touchdowns in 10 games for the Colts in 2021. Pascal re-united with former Colts offensive coordinator Nick Sirianni in free agency 38 catches, 384 yards and three touchdowns last season.

Who's Back

  • Parris Campbell (fourth year)
  • Keke Coutee (fifth year)
  • Ashton Dulin (fourth year)
  • DeMichael Harris (third year)
  • Dezmon Patmon (third year)
  • Michael Pittman Jr. (third year)
  • Mike Strachan (second year)

Pittman will look to build on a breakout sophomore season (88 catches, 1,082 yards, six touchdowns) which made the ninth wide receiver in Colts history to have at least one 1,000-yard season (joining Raymond Berry, Bill Brooks, Roger Carr, Marvin Harrison, T.Y. Hilton, Reggie Langhorne, Brandon Stokley and Wayne).

Campbell broke a bone in his foot while catching a 51-yard touchdown in Week 6 of the 2021 season, and returned to play in Week 17 with a plate and screws still in his foot. The Colts remain confident in Campbell's upside and talent even though he's appeared in seven, two and six games in each of the last three seasons.

Coutee spent most of the 2021 season on the practice squad – he only played in two games and had one catch for five yards – but 328 of his 946 career receiving yards have come in four games against the Colts.

Dulin cemented himself not only as a core special teamer but as an explosive option in the Colts' offense – his 62-yard touchdown against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 12 flashed the speed that could open up more opportunities for him in 2022.

The trio of Harris, Patmon and Strachan saw limited time on the field last year – Patmon had a game-sealing touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 16 – but all three players possess upside and traits the Colts value.

What To Watch For

There should be intense competition for a couple of roster spots during camp, with Harris, Patmon, Strachan and the four undrafted free agents set for what should be one of the fiercest position battles to watch at Grand Park.

How Pierce progresses – keep an eye on padded one-on-one drills against the cornerbacks – will give us a peek into what his usage and upside could be as a rookie, too.

Training Camp Information

The Colts will return to Grand Park Sports Complex in Westfield for training camp in 2022. Click here for a full schedule of practices open to fans. Free tickets will be required to attend, which can be obtained here. For more information on Colts 2022 Training Camp Presented By Koorsen Fire & Security, click here.

Statistically Speaking

Pittman didn't just put together a 1,000-yard season – he made a number of plays when it counted.

Receptions on third down that resulted in a first down in 2021:

Table inside Article
Rank Player Receptions Yards
1 Justin Jefferson 31 574
2 Tyreek Hill 28 422
3 Cooper Kupp 26 480
4 Keenan Allen 25 390
5 Brandin Cooks 24 425
6 Davante Adams 23 363
7 Jaylen Waddle 23 226
8 Stefon Diggs 21 264
9 Mike Evans 21 309
T-10 Michael Pittman Jr. 19 343

Pittman is tied with four other players with 19 catches, but he separated himself – literally and figuratively – with those 343 yards, which ranked ninth in the NFL when converting a third down into a first down last year.

They Said It

"The guy looks like a human Slinky when the ball's in the air." - Colts Chief Personnel Executive Morocco Brown on Alec Pierce, on a recent episode of the Official Colts Podcast

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