Colts Defenders Like The Bravado Johnathan Hankins Has Brought To Indianapolis

Intro: In coming over to the Colts this offseason, newcomer Johnathan Hankins has not shied away from his strong beliefs for the Indy defense in 2017. What do Hankins’ teammates think of his comments?

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INDIANAPOLIS – In Johnathan Hankins, the Colts are acquiring a player and a body type they've longed to have in the interior of their defensive line.

That's what they are getting on the field from Hankins.

But what about off the gridiron?

The Colts are beginning to find out that Hankins is not one to shy away from striking up a few off-season headlines

Despite the Colts ranking 30th in defense last season, Hankins believes the unit will "shock" the NFL in 2017 and has "the best defense in the AFC" on paper.

Fellow defensive lineman Henry Anderson has seen the headlines. And he is just fine with them.

"If you have a guy with that confidence, it just kind of rubs off on the rest of us," Anderson says of Hankins' bravado.

"I don't know if we've had someone like that since I've been here that's kind of out in the media, saying statements like that. I don't have a problem with it. I'd rather have a dude who is optimistic and talking highly of the defense then bringing us down. It's not going to do any harm, I don't think. I think it's going to help."

During the start of the 2017 offseason program in April, Anderson was asked about what he thought of the Colts signing Hankins.

Anderson's description of the new highest paid defender on the Colts?

"Obviously, if he's making that much money…" Anderson said of Hankins, "he's got to be a pretty good player."

And now after a month and a half of working with Hankins?

"As I suspected, Hankins is quite a good player," Anderson says coyly.

Now, the question becomes: Can the Colts turn off-season words into regular-season action?

The new faces are aplenty up front and Anderson is eager to see just how Hankins and the rest of the defensive line bunch will look this fall.

"A lot of us are versatile," Anderson says. "We play multiple positions. The three positions: d-end, d-tackle and nose tackle are all pretty similar. I know I don't really have a body to play nose tackle, but if I need to play inside, I can play inside. We have a lot of guys like that.

"So yeah, I think we can present teams with different looks, and if we want to go with a quicker front, we can put in smaller guys because even some of the smaller guys we have can play well against the run. So yeah, excited to see what we do with that."

And what does Chuck Pagano think about his newest defender turning a few heads with his words this offseason?

"If you put it out there," Pagano says of Hankins' comments, "you better back it up."

The analysis from those producing content on Colts.com does not necessarily represent the thoughts of the Indianapolis Colts organization. Any conjecture, analysis or opinions formed by Colts.com content creators is not based on inside knowledge gained from team officials, players or staff.

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