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Colts Mailbag Weekend Edition: How Will Rob Chudzinski's Offense Look In 2016?

Intro: In Saturday’s mailbag, readers inquire about new cornerback Patrick Robinson, the competition at inside linebacker this offseason and which unit should be more of a focus come draft time.


INDIANAPOLIS – Each week, readers of can submit their questions to have a chance of them being answered in our Wednesday or Saturday mailbag.

With the abundance of questions in recent weeks, we will have two mailbags each week. This one comes via a weekend edition (here’s the Wednesday version from this week).

Stephen G. (Pasadena, CA)

What's up Kevin, I do appreciate you doing these mailbags week in and week out. You Sr. are the real MVP for us Colts Fans. With that being said my question(s) to you, What are the chances the Colts draft defense in the first round and trade to get two second round picks to grab quality interior lineman with the likes of Stanford's guard who is excited to block for Luck. How much do the Colts like Denzelle Good, is he considered an option to start at RT?

Bowen: Haha Stephen, thanks for reading each week. I do enjoy answering the questions. You know I'm a fan of drafting defense in Round One. My problem with your scenario is where you see the Colts acquiring an additional second-round pick. The Colts only have six draft picks in 2016 so there isn't a ton of ammunition there to move up. It's going to cost a significant amount for the Colts to acquire another second rounder. The Colts really, really like the potential of Denzelle Good. Jim Irsay, Chuck Pagano and Ryan Grigson went out of their way in Florida to praise Good, a seventh-round pick from last season. I do think Good could start at right tackle (although Joe Reitz played well there last year) but don't rule out guard either. The Colts think he has some guard ability as well.

CJ P. (Washington D.C.)

Do You Think The Colts Should Go Mostly Defense In This Draft? I Think Our First Pick Should Be Noah Spence. If We Learned Anything From The Superbowl, It's Defense Wins Championships. We Need A Pass Rusher. I Feel Like He's The Next Von Miller. Our Second Round Pick Should Be C Nick Martin. Our Third Round Pick Should Be G Joshua Garnett. The Rest Should Be Straight Defense. I Like Denzelle Good Potential. I See Him Starting At RT. The O-Line Could Be, AC At LT, Mewhort At LG, Martin At C, Garnett At RG, And Good At RT.

Bowen: If you've read past mailbags, you would know that I'm a fan of continuing to stockpile the defense with young talent. You found three starters on that side of the ball in the 2015 class (David Parry, Henry Anderson and Clayton Geathers). If D'Joun Smith can produce in his second season, you are looking at four key defensive contributors from the 2015 rookie class. That's why I believe another three-ish such additions there in 2016 would really, really enhance the future the Colts have on defense for the next handful of seasons.

Bransen H. (Tipton, IN)

Hi Kevin, big fan!

  1. I think people think that the only way to improve at position is either through free agency and/or the draft. For instance, Hugh Thorton has lost almost 30 pounds to be more effective in our new zone run scheme. My question is, do the colts believe he can be the guy at RG in this more effective zone? If so then that helps narrow down the O-Line needs to C.
  1. Grigson said that even though we signed Turbin and Todman, that doesn't mean they aren't looking at RB. He said it's hard to pass up an elite RB. This sounds a lot like Derrick Henry in round 1?
  1. I've seen in a lot of Round 1 mock drafts going either RT (Decker) or ILB (Ragland). Now Ragland is a fantastic 3-4 tackler, but I feel confident in Nate Irving and Sio Moore to fill Freeman's spot, thoughts?
  1. I follow Pat Mcafee on Twitter and he suggested a punt downed in the 5 yard line to be awarded 2 points? I love this idea? Thoughts?


Bowen: Bransen isn't holding back this week with the number of questions. Jim Irsay talked about Thornton this past week and he sounded like the fourth-year guard will definitely have a say in who plays right guard for the Colts in 2016. Will the body change be the difference for Thornton? I can't see Derrick Henry going in Round One. Maybe I'm wrong, but I haven't seen many Mock Drafts with him in the first 20 picks. The Colts do like what they have in Nate Irving and Sio Moore's experience. At the same time, they like the depth at inside linebacker in this draft class. Pat McAfee touched on the new touchback rule this week, but I can't see the rule you alluded to above gaining much steam.

David B. (Clearwater, FL)

My wife is British and has become a great fan of the Colts. how-ever she is a life-time Chelsea English soccer fan. Her team like many others have announced dates to play in U.S. Kevin have u ever heard Lucas std. considering hosting one of these events? T.Y. david

Bowen: I didn't expect this topic. David, I'm not sure if you remember but Lucas Oil Stadium played host to a soccer match between Chelsea and Inter Milan back in 2013. More than 40,000 fans attended the match. Based off that, I think Lucas Oil is open to hosting such an event again. I know when the World Cup bidding process came around, Lucas Oil was mentioned as an option to host games.

Anthony O. (Springfield, MO)

Read the mailbag every week and been doing my best staying up to date on all news Colts. Saw yesterday that the Colts picked up Robinson as a veteran CB to potentially start opposite Davis, which would be great to solidify. Do you think he will be able to lock down that side like Davis does his side? Also I like who the Colts brought in to round out the running back group, so do you feel they will still look at a late round draft at RB? I personally think if they take care of the DL/DE needs and OL needs early in the draft that they should find a gem in the later rounds at WR like they did with Moncrief. What do you think with the neweat additions?

Bowen: Head here for some more information on new cornerback Patrick Robinson. I think he does lock up the No. 2 cornerback spot, with some nice versatility to slide into the slot for Ted Monachino. Robinson's ability to not allow the big play last season had to make him very attractive to the Colts. As far as running back, I wouldn't rule out one at all. Ryan Grigson touched on this very point at the League Meetings. The Colts are in the market for a young running back.

Jerry G. (Florence, AL)

Hey Kevin, when is the schedule coming out? I pastor a church and its hard to explain missing for a game. Trying to find out if we have any home games on a Monday or Thursday?

Bowen: Jerry, I respect your passion. The NFL schedule typically comes out in mid-to-late April. The Colts will definitely be playing one Thursday night game and I'd guess they would be in the running for a few Monday night contests with Andrew Luck back healthy. Trying to predict which weeks will be the "weekday" games is impossible.

Joey K. (New York)

Mr Bowen I am a huge Colts fan and I would love to share to you my theory, and would love to hear your opinion..don't be quick to judge, just hear me out

The Colts aren't going to win the Super Bowl next year, let's not be ignorant. But we have contended for one with a very similar defense we have now, simply because of a healthy Andrew Luck. If I was the general manager, I wouldn't ignore defense in the draft, but I would take Ryan Kelly/Nick Martin with our first pick whether we trade back or not..then The Standford guard Garnett. We have 2 solid options for right tackle next season. We take these 2 and we have a solid if not above average line for years to come, so we can put our full focus on building a defense after our first2 picks in the next coming years.

What do you think?

Bowen: Joey, I understand you're thinking but I would be hard pressed to find a team going back-to-back interior linemen to start a draft. If an elite pass rusher is on the board in the first two rounds, you just can't automatically say no to. Jim Irsay talked in Florida about the Colts finding a center and then a guard/tackle combo. The Colts are still very much in the process of building their defense. You can't ignore that side of the ball right away until you see the board fall in Round One and Two.

Dave H. (Sebring, FL)


Bowen: I don't believe Jim Irsay has ever specified a year amount on the next contract for Andrew Luck. Irsay said it would be a nine-figure sort of deal, but nothing about length.

Martin G. (Topolcany, Slovakia)

Hi Kevin, I am a big Colts fan from Europe. I appreciate your work with the mailbag. I would like to ask you why is it that Josh Robinson is not with the team and if is there a chance that Boom Herron will be back in 2016? And also I would like to know more about "Wembley game" vs. Jacksonville. Thank you for your answers

Bowen: Josh Robinson never regained the momentum he created for himself last August. Some fumbles and injuries led to Robinson going off the active roster and eventually he was placed on injured reserve. Boom Herron was a free agent this year. Colts' brass talked last week about the need to go find veteran backups this offseason and they've done that with Robert Turbin and Jordan Todman. Martin, the Colts are coming to play in London next season. They will be taking on the Jaguars at Wembley Stadium on Oct. 2. Here is more information on the Colts going across the pond.

Alec G. (Bakersfield, CA)

Im a big fan and i live in bakersfield california so im like a lone fan.But anyways my question is how is Nate irving? ive been wondering because that man is a true beast an a game wrecker. I was really excited when we signed him but i know his health is in question. so do you have any info on his injuries?

Bowen: Irving should be recovered now and have a healthy offseason program in his second season with the Colts. Last year it was virtually all mental reps for Irving until he finally got on the field late in Training Camp. Irving started two games last season but it was a very up and down year for his availability. That was a bit to be expected with him coming off a mid-season ACL injury in 2014. The Colts are anxious to see a healthy Irving on the field this offseason. He started for the Broncos in 2014, on a unit that ranked top-five in the NFL. I believe Irving will have a strong say on who starts next to D'Qwell Jackson in 2016.

Ray S. (Minneapolis)

Hello Kevin, With the in pending draft rapidly approaching can you share with us who does the Colts use for scouts? Also was there any chances in this area according to recent report cards on our draft selections, we can't seem to get grades above a C?

Bowen: Ray, I'll point you to the Colts’ staff directory page to find the scouts. The Colts have around 10 scouts all across the United States. Regions are divided up and then the entire scouting department convenes a couple of times throughout the year to put together the draft board.

Clyde B. (Winona Lake, IN)

With the Dolphins maybe looking to trade for a running back. Do you think the Colts might consider trading one of the several running backs they have on the roster to aquire a draft pick?

Bowen: I can't see such a trade happening. Robert Turbin and Jordan Todman were just on the open market. So if the Dolphins really wanted them, they could have tried to sign them. Plus, the Dolphins wouldn't be giving up a real significant pick even if they decided a trade was necessary.

Anthony A. (New Jersey)

I understand the acquisition of Nate Irving and Sio Moore puts them in line to start Next to jackson. But why is there no talk of junior sylvestre in the mix. He had and awesome preseason last year. He's a little on the short side but so was Sam mills and our own Gary bracket. Sylvestre , in my opinion was the most underrated LB comming out last year. Extremely athletic. In a league of measurables, 4.5 LB's who can play the run/pass equally well are at a premium.Can't understand why he went undrafted.. Was there baggage?

Bowen: Chuck Pagano mentioned Sylvestre's name at the League Meetings this week. The Colts really like a potential steal they found last year in Sylvestre, an undrafted free agent. I think his size is why he went undrafted. You're right that he did play well in the preseason before going on injured reserve. I'd expect Sylvestre to have a chance to factor into the rotation at inside linebacker.

Luke R. (Rochester, NY)

Hey Kevin,

Earlier in the month, the Colts announced the timeline (more or less) when they plan on trying to extend Andrew Luck's contract. However, brining back Luck for potentially 2-5 more years doesn't halt the fact that the Colts not only went 8-8 in a season where many expected for them to make the Super Bowl, but our offense was far less effective as the 2014 Colts, even with the additions during our previous offseason.

With Ryan Grigson bringing Luck back to play in Indianapolis, it would also be the smart time to modify the offensive gameplan from last year and prior years; meaning everything centered around Andrew Luck. What do you think Rob Chudzinski, Ryan Grigson, and Chuck Pagano will try to do to make the 2015-16 Colts' offense more effective?

Bowen: I'm very interested to see just what Rob Chudzinski's scheme looks like. Chud has history with Norv Turner and with the weapons at receiver, expect the Colts to take their shots down the field with a healthy Andrew Luck. I'll leave you with this quote from Carolina's Ron Rivera, who Chud was the offensive coordinator for from 2011-12. "Chud is a very bright game planner," Rivera said at the League Meetings. "I think he's going to attack vertically. He's got the quarterback with the type of physical characteristics to throw the ball, stand tall in the pocket. And they've got playmakers. He's going to find ways to utilize it. I know he likes the tight end position and that will be a position that will be exploited. If you go back and look at the things that we did when we first got started with Chud you'll see it. I think he will fit in Indy very well for what Indianapolis wants to do."

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