Pat McAfee, Adam Vinatieri Lead Strong Start For Colts Special Teams Units

Intro: After three games, the Colts special teams units are living up to lofty preseason expectations. What statistics are the Colts special teams units leading the league in?

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INDIANAPOLIS – The golf clubs have been put away for some time for Pat McAfee but he's been breaking out his swing several times the past few weeks.

When McAfee imitates his wedge swing, the move is in celebration of the Colts coverage units executing another league leading punt.

Once McAfee re-signed with the Colts earlier this offseason, the goals for 2014 weren't too specific, but rather one broad, ambitious target.

"We are supposed to be dominant. We are supposed to be the greatest and that's what we are aiming for," McAfee says looking back on offseason objectives for the special teams units.

After three weeks of the regular season, the Colts have backed up their lofty preseason expectations.

McAfee himself leads the league in punt average at 52.7 yards per punt (1.4 longer than second place).

McAfee's booming punts start a Colts coverage unit that ranks No. 1 in net punt average at 47.8 yards per kick (nearly three yards further than second).

And just for good measure, McAfee's 17 touchbacks are three more than any other player.

While McAfee is quick to thank his core special teams players, his coverage unit returns the favor right back to the man hanging the ball up in the clouds for them to run under.

"Pat kicks the mess out of the ball and puts it in the right places," Sergio Brown says.

"The guys on the group are just incredible. That type of energy and competitiveness out there is contagious."

Guys like Brown, Colt Anderson, Andy Studebaker and Boom Herron are among the "core" special teams players that have helped the Colts flip field position so many times in 2014.

To compile a complete special teams group through a 16-game schedule though, guys that might not typically be viewed as "fourth down players" must rise to the occasion.

Dwayne Allen is one of the guys.

Assisting on a special teams tackle won't win over any fantasy football owners for Allen but he knows the value of covering a McAfee punt.

"It's one of the most overlooked things from a fan standpoint, but it's so critical to the game," Allen says.

"It's my opportunity to become a defender. I get to protect, then hopefully go out and cover and hopefully make a tackle. To be able to contribute to the team in a way other then a way of catching or blocking is exciting."

Entering the 2014 offseason, the Colts special teams had some major questions to answer involving two of the league's premier kickers.

McAfee and Adam Vinatieri eventually re-signed with Indianapolis to give the Colts the longest tenured kicking duo in the league at six years.

Vinatieri has quietly built a streak of 12 consecutive made field goals and McAfee speaks for the pair in explaining what their mindset is all about.

"We want to be the greatest in the league...," McAfee says of the duo.

"We both got new contracts. We know that we got to do this, we've got to perform but most importantly we just love this team and we just want do well for our teammates and our coaches. That's what it's about."

Today Adam Vinatieri agreed to terms with the Colts! Here is a look back at his career with the Colts. (2006-present)

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