INDIANAPOLIS – Each week, readers of Colts.com can submit their questions to have a chance of them being answered in our Wednesday mailbag.
Here is this week's collection:Chip Emerick (Cumberland, MD)
Even though Robert Mathis is out for the year, thanks to an injury, will we see him on the sidelines supporting his teammates when his suspension is over? I loved seeing his twitter feed from Sunday. He obviously loves his team and is supporting them from afar. Great game Sunday and more to come, Go Colts!!!!
Bowen: Following Mathis on game days is extremely entertaining. His emotion is clear through the tweets, seeing how he obviously can't be with the team until after Sunday's game. Mahtis was down in Atlanta following surgery but assuming he returns to Indianapolis, I see no reason why he wouldn't be present at games. A leg injury can be a little dicey though in terms of standing on the sidelines.
Frankie Ruiz (Bakersfield, CA)
Donte Moncrief has shown some flashes useing his speed and size and seems to be a promiseing young receiver. Can we expect to see more of him? I feel like Reggie Wayne is still dependable, but Moncrief, Hilton, and Nicks could be a dangerous trio moving forward. What are your thoughts??
Bowen: The future is clearly bright for the 21-year-old Moncrief and Sunday was another indication of just that. Moncrief shined in Training Camp getting some first team reps with the Colts top three receivers all missing some time in Anderson. On any other team Moncrief is probably getting 20-30 offensive snaps a game. That isn't the case in Indianapolis, but there's no question Moncrief is a major part of the future Indianapolis offense.
Shawn Lambert (Walterboro)
can luck keep moving the ball well against a better team get it to the running back ,receiver, and tight end
Bowen: Sunday was the ideal blueprint to exactly what you're talking about. It's pretty remarkable the numbers that Andrew Luck has put up so far this year with Reggie Wayne and T.Y. Hilton still not having a touchdown. Luck hit nine different receivers at least twice this past week (four wide receivers, three tight ends and two running backs). Game plans are going to change from week-to-week and Luck is about to face some of the league's best defenses in the next month so it will be interesting to watch if his numbers can remain among the NFL's top signal callers.
Philo Vaega (Lacey, WA)
Why not try give Newsome a chance?
Bowen: Newsome is averaging a little more than 20 snaps a game defensively, so he's getting some reps behind Bjoern Werner and Erik Walden. We've seen the rookie mainly used in passing situations and he's been the most frequent sub off the edge. I don't see any reason why the Colts wouldn't continue to give Newsome opportunities with a pass rush looking to be more creative.
Kyle Williams (McGuire AFB, NJ)
I'm pleased to see/hear that a vast majority of Colts Fans have not given up hope when it comes to Trent Richardson's contributions to the team. It's truly great to see Colts Nation continuously support him as we fine-tune our offense. He's had to play quite a few tough hands that have been dealt to him since the start of his young NFL career (changes in coaching staff, playbooks, teams, etc.) and I absolutely haven't given up hope. Although our running game was better against the Eagles, it was still obvious that he would hesitate to hit the hole, or made one two many cuts, may have tried to get too fancy, or simply outran his lead block. Why is it that T-Rich hasn't quite found the success in running the ball as Bradshaw has? He's running behind the same line, same blockers, same formations. In YOUR opinion, is this a confidence issue with Richardson?
Bowen: I don't sense a confidence issue at all for Richardson. While both players have been effective in 2014 (the Colts are the lone team in the league with two runners over 150 rushing yards), Bradshaw has been one of the most pleasant surprises in the NFL early on this year. On Sunday, we saw Richardson with another game of more than 4.0 yards per carry. If Richardson continues to find some success in cutback lanes like he did on Sunday, that number should be well in sight each week.
MP (Charlotte, NC)
I saw that someone asked you about Herron and why not use him. You responded that it's difficult to use three running backs. I'm from Charlotte, and I see the Panthers do that all the time, and they make it look so easy. Why is it difficult for us??
Bowen: The Panthers do use three very well and that is clearly team specific. Most teams in the NFL do not use three backs anywhere near with the frequency of a Carolina. This year, they've struggled with this system but you are correct that in years past it has worked. With the Colts already having so many weapons at the skill spots, inserting another into the game plan could begin to complicate things in trying to get everyone involved. Richardson and Bradshaw have been productive early this year so I don't see the need in trying to force carries to Herron (even though I do think Herron is capable to carry some work load if called upon).
Thomas Watters (Bloomington, IN)
We have two of the best Receivers in the Game w/Reggie n TY and I find it hard to believe that neither have a TD Reception in the first two weeks. Do you Plan on Targeting them more with some Timed High Percentage Routes?
Bowen: It's pretty remarkable that of Luck's nine touchdown passes in 2014 none have gone to Hilton or Wayne. These two are the leading receivers though and it's clear that when the Colts get closer and closer to the goal line opponents are taking notice of No. 87 and No. 13. Again, they are the Colts leading receivers for a reason and those two are going to continue to be the most frequently targeted pass catches for Luck.
Brandon James (Lake Charles, LA)
Are the colts go switch to a four-three defense sense they just got kelcy Quarles
Bowen: The Colts aren't changing their 3-4 defensive scheme anytime soon. Quarles got 16 snaps on defense in his Colts debut, with Art Jones out of the lineup. The highlight for Quarles came on a fourth quarter sack.
Richard Wolford (Tulsa, OK).
Does the team have any say in who ref's their games? Or can they make a recommendation? Thanks, Colt Strong
Bowen: Teams do not have any such say. Each week, teams do send in questions they have on the previous week's game from an officiating standpoint. The NFL has final say in deciding which crews to assign to games.