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Indianapolis Colts

Isaiah McKenzie sees his versatility fitting with Shane Steichen, Colts' offense

McKenzie joined the Colts on Wednesday after five seasons with the Buffalo Bills. 

Isaiah McKenzie is used to being one of, if not the, shortest guys on his team. At 5-foot-8, McKenzie is the shortest player on the Colts after signing with the team on Wednesday.

But McKenzie's stature has not impeded his career in the NFL. He's barely missed any time due to injury in six seasons, and he's one of 13 wide receivers 5-8 or shorter in league history to have at least 140 receptions.

"I feel like my size doesn't even matter at this point," McKenzie said. "I bring it up because everybody says he's too small, but I've only missed two games in my career. I can withstand a hit, I can make plays and I feel like I'm here for a reason." 

Over 80 games spent with the Denver Broncos (2017-2018) and Buffalo Bills (2018-2022), McKenzie has 141 catches for 1,345 yards with 11 touchdowns, and 47 carries for 230 yards with four rushing scores. He also returned a punt for a touchdown in 2020, adding an exclamation point to his belief that he can make any defender miss in space with his quickness, agility and speed.

"Whatever is possible, I feel like I can do it," McKenzie said. "I'm fast enough to do it, quick enough to get open and can separate enough to catch the football. I feel like that's what I bring to not only the team, but just to my game and the offense."

The Bills weaponized McKenzie's do-it-all versatility in 2022, with the former fifth-round pick catching 42 passes for 423 yards and rushing nine times for 55 yards. McKenzie's five total touchdowns tied a career high, and his 9.4 yards per touch average was the highest of his career.

McKenzie sees his versatility meshing well with the Colts' taller wide receivers (like 6-foot-1 Ashton Dulin, 6-foot-3 Alec Pierce and 6-foot-4 Michael Pittman Jr.) as part of head coach Shane Steichen's offensive philosophy in Indianapolis.

"Just talking to him, he's a great guy, great coach," McKenzie said. "And he did some great things in Philly. From what I've seen, watching film and seeing him coaching-wise, he's very versatile. We can run the ball, misdirection, gadget plays and things like that. I feel like he's very versatile and he's going to bring that, and that's what I bring to the team — being versatile, being fast, bringing speed, agility, getting open. And I feel like he's going to use me the best way possible in any way possible."

McKenzie, as a free agent, said he heard good things about the Colts from former Bills teammate Zack Moss and offseason training buddy Kenny Moore II. And while the Colts don't know who their QB1 will be in 2023, that didn't deter McKenzie from landing in Indianapolis.

"I'm not really worried about it because my job is to get open and catch the football no matter who's throwing me the ball," McKenzie said. "That's what I'm going to do. So I feel like even though it's a question mark, I'm gonna do my job and I'm gonna have the guys in the receiver room do their job the best way I can, and everybody's gonna their job and whoever's at quarterback, that's what we're gonna make happen."

McKenzie caught 42 passes for 423 yards with four touchdowns and rushed nine times for 55 yards and a touchdown in 2022.

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