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Colts cornerback Dallis Flowers hopes to establish himself as a 'top' player this season

Going from a roster hopeful to taking first-team reps at training camp, Flowers has the backing of his coaching staff ahead of the 2023 season.


WESTFIELD, Ind. -- Outside of Grand Park Sports Campus, the name Dallis Flowers does not generate much national buzz...yet.

However, within the Colts' organization, the excitement for what the second-year cornerback can become is palpable.

"We really like Dallis Flowers," general manager Chris Ballard said. "Dallis is talented. He's a young player like any but we think he's going to take a whole other step. Stephon (Gilmore), I love Stephon Gilmore – he's an unbelievable pro and I still talk to Stephon. He was high – he kept telling me, 'Man this Dallis Flowers is really talented.' He's right, he is. Now, he's got to play and he's got to prove it but the times, the snapshot we've given him has been pretty good."

As an undrafted rookie out of Pittsburg State, Flowers played 174 defensive snaps last season and had 14 tackles and a forced fumble.

He also had 23 kickoff returns where he gained a team-high 715 return yards, including an 89-yard return against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 12.

After months of hard work and gaining the trust of Colts' defensive backs coach Ron Milus, he started Week 18 against the Houston Texans at cornerback.

"I think it really was in practice, some of the one-on-one sessions we had during the year," Milus said. "When you go back and look, this guy can really do it. He just needed his opportunity. And later on in the season, when the opportunity presented itself he had a chance to go out and perform."

Fast forward to this year's training camp and Flowers has had the first crack at earning a starting opportunity which he said he doesn't take lightly.

"It's a blessing," Flowers said. "I try not to take any day for granted, so I come in here and work my [butt] off every single day."

No longer feeling the weight of being an undrafted rookie trying to prove that he belongs, Flowers said he finally feels like he can settle in.

"This year, I know where I'm at," Flowers said. "I know the scheme and what the coaches are asking and looking for. I know what the defense is looking for in general. I just feel more comfortable year two into the scheme. I know what's going on before it happens. So. I'm way more in tune with myself and the defense overall."

A big believer in Flowers' traits, Colts defensive coordinator Gus Bradley said that he hopes to see him use them on every play.

"I think Dallis is one of those guys where he's got the length, the speed, and you look at him and you see the playmaking," Bradley said. "Now it's just consistency. Do we know what we are getting from him play after play?"

That consistency will be put to the test this season as Flowers will not only have to go against his teammates Michael Pittman Jr. and Alec Pierce, but other notable receivers on the schedule like DeAndre Hopkins, Ja'Marr Chase and Davante Adams.

Never one to shy away from a challenge, Flowers said that he looks forward to proving his mettle against the league's top guys.

"It really tests yourself to see how good you are," Flowers said. "A lot of people watch tv or are watching film and think, 'I could have done this if he would have done that'. But it's different once you're actually in that predicament going against those guys. It's a good test for you and the other person you're going against."

By all accounts, Flowers seems intent on passing those tests as he's set lofty expectations for himself this season.

"I want to show everyone that I'm the best kick returner in the game and a top cornerback," Flowers said.

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