ANDERSON – The Colts were back to their normal practice schedule on Friday with an afternoon session running for a little less than two hours.
An afternoon practice is scheduled again for Saturday before a mandatory off day on Sunday.
Here are three takeaways from Friday's practice
- Back on the practice fields after a bit of a short turnaround, the defense had a very strong afternoon on Friday. Andrew Luck was 16-of-25 on the day with the Colts once again practicing a lot of situational drills (under two-minute, red zone). Many veterans rested on Friday (see injury report below) with the players practicing in shoulder pads and shorts.
The highlight on Friday afternoon came via Greg Toler. In a two-minute drill (more like 1:04), Luck quickly moved the offense down to the one-yard line. Luck tried to pull a fast one on the Colts defense by acting like a spike was forthcoming. Toler was not fooled though. His leaping interception turned into points for the defense as Toler took the pick down the sideline for a 99-yard touchdown. That brought the entire defense off the sideline to celebrate with a player that has been healthy, and effective, all offseason long.
- One player that Colts fans know very well but we haven't seen a ton from this camp is Robert Mathis. Combine a veteran pitch count, and the pending suspension for Mathis, the first team reps have been minimal for No. 98.
He got some extended action on Friday though and looked like his old self. The patented spin move got the best of Anthony Castonzo and a holding penalty was the only thing the Colts left tackle could do to keep Mathis away from Luck. Later on in practice, a play was blown dead when Mathis got to the quarterback. It's pretty clear Mathis knows the amount of run he needs to be rearing to go come October 5.
- With a handful of veterans resting on Friday afternoon, we saw some interesting personnel groupings out there. Veteran Kelvin Sheppard saw a ton of first team reps and he's a guy that figures to be high on the depth chart behind starters D'Qwell Jackson and Jerrell Freeman. At right tackle, Joe Reitz filled in with the starting unit and his versatility will be critical in 2014 both at guard and tackle. At safety, Sergio Brown returned to his starting position with Delano Howell and Mike Adams both getting first team action, too.
INJURY REPORT/ROSTER MOVES
The following players did not participate in Friday's practice: Josh Lenz, Xavier Nixon, Vontae Davis, LaRon Landry, Davin Meggett, Josh McNary and Reggie Wayne, Gosder Cherilus, Cam Johnson, Andrew Jackson (was helped off by trainers during special teams drills), Cory Redding and Jerrell Freeman. Safe to say a ton of rest for many veterans following last night's practice.
Pep Hamilton on what he's seen from Trent Richardson
"He has a better understanding of the offense. I think it all starts with his ability to play without the ball. We've got to protect our quarterback and he's done a great job of making the appropriate adjustments from a pass protection standpoint and he's in to it. He's a lot more relaxed now. Like I said, I think he will be able to play fast without any uncertainty on game day."
PLAYER QUOTE OF THE DAY
Dwayne Allen on what this offense is able to do this year that it couldn't do in 2013:
"We're able to do a lot of things that we did last year but with bigger personnel, meaning me and Coby (Fleener) are the pair that are on the field and we don't leave the field no matter the situation. Today we worked a two-minute drill with one tight end, three wides, but very often we'll work the same two-minute drill with two tight ends and two wides just to give the defense a different look and really work on the things that we want to accomplish."
PLAYER TWEET OF THE DAY
YESTERDAY'S TRIVIA QUIZ
Chuck Pagano is one of eight NFL coaches ever to open a career with consecutive seasons with 11-plus wins. Only one of the other seven still is an active coach. Who is he?
ANSWER: Jim Harbaugh ("Captain Comeback") is the only active coach to open a career with consecutive seasons with 11-plus wins. Harbaugh did it with San Francisco in 2011-12.
TODAY'S TRIVIA QUIZ
Chuck Pagano is the fifth Colts coach to earn playoff berths and have double-digit victory totals in the first two seasons with the club. Name the others. See the next Colts Camp Notebook for the answer.
SPOTTED IN CAMP
The national media is beginning to invade on Anderson. ESPN's Mike Sando attended the night practice on Thursday and stuck around through Friday afternoon. ESPN was well represented in Anderson on Friday with Kevin Seifert also making an appearance.
PRACTICE ATTENDANCE: 2,782. TOTAL FOR CAMP: 24,050
It was another ideal day in Anderson. Sunny skies descended on the Anderson University practice fields with temperatures reaching the low 80s. Tomorrow's forecast calls for similar temps with a 40 percent chance of rain.
The Colts held an afternoon practice on Friday. The schedule will return to its normal format on Saturday with a closed morning walk-through and an open afternoon practice from 1:50-4:25 p.m.
Another great afternoon practice!