How Does Pep Hamilton View The Skill Players On The Colts Offense?

Intro: Earlier this week, Colts offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton broke down seven of the skill players that he could be working with in 2015.

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INDIANAPOLIS – If you think about it, Pep Hamilton might sleep uneasy at night.

Restless nights for Hamilton wouldn't be because he's lacking offensive talent at the skill positions this season.

The tossing and turning would come from thinking about how he is going to get so many capable bodies the football, in an offense that should challenge the impressive numbers put up last season.

Earlier this week, the Colts offensive coordinator went in-depth on what he has at the skill groups in 2015.

**Frank Gore

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"The way I know Frank, football is life for Frank. What I mean by that is, I don't know if we have ever had a conversation where we are not talking about football. Even when I try and probe and ask him, 'How's your family, so on and so forth?' It goes back to, 'Hey coach what do I need to do to get better?' He has a passion for the game. He's a great teammate and a leader of men. Frank has been a welcome addition to our team.

"Frank was born to run and what I mean by that is Frank has a great combination of size and the ability to change direction. But when you look at his leg cycle and his ability to accelerate and not need a lot of room or space, it does not take him a lot of time to get from zero to 10 in a sense. I think that's just a gift that he has, a natural talent. That's one of the many things that have made him an exceptional pro for a long time in this league."

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**Bowen's Take: Hamilton has seen Gore at his best. In 2006, Hamilton was the 49ers quarterbacks coach. That same season, Gore rushed for a career-high 312 carries and 1,695 yards. Nearly 10 years later, watching Gore, you still see vision and a burst that has allowed him to maintain remarkable longevity at the running back position. Colts fans in Anderson have shown their appreciation for a running back like Gore with constant cheers for the new starting back.

**Andre Johnson

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"One of the things that's allowed Andre to be such a good pro for so long is his ability to focus and pay attention to the details. He approached joining our team as if he was a rookie. He took copious notes and he was always focus and engaged in meeting. He's constantly asking questions and he's working overtime to build a relationship with Andrew Luck and the rest of our guys for that matter.

"His catching radius is off the chart as well as the fact that Andre is a big, physical, strong man that understands how to leverage and use his body to give him an opportunity to make those plays."

Bowen's Take: That last quote from Hamilton has been evident in Johnson's playmaking this camp. The 13-year veteran is going to be quite a weapon on plenty of underneath routes in 2015. Watching Johnson in Anderson, you think back to Reggie Wayne in 2012 (obviously different body types) and the security blanket No. 87 provided Andrew Luck on third-downs. I expect Johnson's role to extend into the red zone, too.

**T.Y. Hilton

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"T.Y. has exceptional spatial awareness. It's one of those things that's somewhat innate. He can feel or sense when bodies are around him and then you have to consider that he has exceptional body control as well. He has made some amazing plays over the course of his young career and I think the sky is the limit for T. Y. T.Y. is a guy that has field credibility around here and our quarterback has a lot of trust in him."

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**Bowen's Take: Hilton's consistency after three seasons is rare for a player of his stature. Many wide receivers Hilton's size just don't last in the NFL, particularly at an elite level. Here, Hamilton explains why Hilton has more than held his own in three NFL seasons.

**Donte Moncrief

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"Donte is ahead of schedule. I thought that he made a ton of plays for us last year. I think back to the Redskins game and he had a game changing play with the long touchdown that he caught on the post route. Donte has the combination of exceptional size and speed for the wide receiver position as well, and he is a delightful young man that comes to work with a great attitude each day. Football is important to him, so I expect that he will realize his full potential and keep getting better in his second year as a pro."

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**Bowen's Take: Moncrief turned 22 years old on Thursday. It was a reminder of just how young the second-year wide receiver is as he continues to impress during Training Camp. How the Colts use Moncrief in 2015 is going to be fun to watch, because it's clear Hamilton (and Andrew Luck) thinks very highly of the 2014 third-round pick.

Phillip Dorsett

"You have to really focus on him to see him because a lot of times he is running so fast it's hard to keep up with. If you look at Phillip he is a smaller, but stout receiver that has exceptional speed. He has pretty good football aptitude as well.

"His football instincts and his ability to take the information from the meetings out to the practice field, I'll have to give him a double thumbs up from that standpoint. He's a guy that our quarterback is starting to trust. Even more and more reps that he gets with Andrew, the more he will be able to contribute in our offense."

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**Bowen's Take: Dorsett had a very nice Wednesday night practice, highlighted by a deep touchdown from Matt Hasselbeck. The first-team reps are starting to build for Dorsett. He is expected to be the team's punt returner in 2015, and we even saw the Colts put him in the backfield in a shotgun set on Wednesday night.

**Duron Carter

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"Every day he makes a play that makes you say, 'wow.' He's a big guy that can accelerate and track the ball. Like I just said, every day he will make a play at some point over the course of practice that will get your attention and let you know why it's important to have guys that can just go up and make a play and take the ball out of the air."

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**Bowen's Take: Carter has the attention of the Colts offensive coordinator after about a week in Anderson. To make the Colts 53-man roster, Carter just needs to continue to string some of these days together. Chuck Pagano always says for fringe roster guys "making yourself noticed" is the easiest way to still be in Indianapolis come September. Carter is doing that, with the Colts first preseason game a little more than a week away.

**Coby Fleener

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"Coby is a special athlete in a sense that he is 6-6, 250 pounds and he can run as fast as most NFL receivers. I think just from an overall football aptitude standpoint that would probably be the biggest difference in Coby now, as opposed to a young Coby back at Stanford.

"I am excited to see that Coby has continued to develop his game and become a more well-rounded tight end. He can play with the ball or without the ball and I think he will do big things for us this season."

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**Bowen's Take: Entering his fourth NFL season, Fleener has caught 129 balls, on pace to break any franchise record for tight ends. The last two seasons, injuries have forced Fleener into a role just behind T.Y. Hilton as the Colts second biggest receiving threat. With the influx of talent now at wide receiver, Fleener should see plenty of favorable matchups in 2015.

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