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Colts Onside Kick Prowess Makes Opponents Think Twice In 2015

Intro: After yet another successful onside kick this preseason, the Colts are going to have the full attention of opposing special teams coordinators in 2015.


INDIANAPOLIS – Special teams coordinators won't be sleeping easy when the Colts appear on their 2015 schedule.

The Colts added another layer of preparation for those coaches this preseason when Indianapolis special teams coordinator Tom McMahon reached into his bag of tricks once again.

Last year, the Colts weren't afraid to go for first-quarter onside kicks on two different occasions.

The high risk turned into plenty of reward.

A pair of successful onside kicks in early season contests against Tennessee and Houston led to early multi-score leads and plenty of frightful opposing special teams units the rest of the season.

Flash back to a week and a half ago in St. Louis and who said trickeration couldn't enter the game plan in the preseason.

Yet another Pat McAfee onside kick ended up in Colts hands, putting even more film opposing teams will have to dissect when they see the AFC South defending champions this season.

"You don't game plan much for preseason games but we looked at it a little bit (the week prior) and thought we had it," McAfee said of the Colts first-quarter onside kick against the Rams.

"We've kicked a couple to the right (Denver and Tennessee last year), one up the middle (Houston last season) and now one to the left (St. Louis). It's going to be really difficult for people to prepare for us."

The latest trick from McAfee came with rookie Clayton Geathers getting involved in what has become a Colts staple.

Recovering onside kicks are a rarity in the NFL, but Geathers helped continue the trend by pulling in the loose ball with an extended reach.

"Heck of a play there by Clayton to get down in there, put a paw on it and rip it out of harm's way," McAfee said after viewing a video of the onside kick, following the Colts 24-14 win over the Rams.

Another trend that has come with the Colts snatching up onside kicks is what they've done with the sudden change in possession.

Just like the Colts did in both instances last season, a touchdown drive ensued against the Rams.

Geathers has only been a Colt for a few months, but he's quickly realizing this team isn't messing around on special teams.

"It changes momentum of the game, changes field position, it's huge," Geathers says.

"It's just good situational football and we executed it well."

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