Postcards From Camp: Yannick Ngakoue Is Already Making An Impact On Both Sides Of The Ball

The Colts held their second training camp practice of 2022 on Thursday in front of a packed house at Grand Park in Westfield. Here's everything you need to know from the day's work, including how Yannick Ngakoue is making a strong early impression. 

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WESTFIELD, Ind. – While Matt Ryan is bringing his own energy to the Colts' offense, another high-profile offseason addition is providing plenty of juice on the other side of the ball.

  • Defensive end Yannick Ngakoue was again noticeably energetic during Thursday's practice, and the drive he's brought to Grand Park has helped set the tone for the Colts' defense.
  • "He brings an energy, a confidence — proven production year in and year out," head coach Frank Reich said. "This guy's a playmaker. So that kind of leadership, it's consistent. He brings that consistent playmaking ability to us."
  • Ngakoue isn't just helping boost the Colts' defense, though. Left tackle Matt Pryor – who's primarily faced Ngakoue during 11-on-11 drills – said the six-year veteran is giving him a "game look" on every snap.
  • For Pryor, who's competing to be the Colts' starting left tackle, squaring off against Ngakoue – and his signature cross-chop pass rush move – has already helped him hone in on certain details.

"It's going to make my technique better," Pryor said. "He's real good with his hands. He's a real hand technician. So being able to work my hands, get some head movements, get some fake jabs out there, work different hand placements — it really helps a lot."

Quick hits from Thursday's practice:

  • Ryan showed a good connection with wide receiver Parris Campbell, who had a number of catches – plenty of which were accurate and led to additional yards after the catch.
  • Cornerback Stephon Gilmore made a handful of plays, especially in one-on-one drills, and looked every bit like a veteran who's earned spots in each of the last four Pro Bowls.
  • Ryan's ability to quickly process pre- and post-snap information continues to be evident and impressive, leading to plenty of crisp, clean periods of seven-on-seven and 11-on-11.
  • Ryan, while rolling to his right, found tight end Mo Alie-Cox for a spectacular diving catch; he also aired out a deep completion to wide receiver Ashton Dulin during one-on-one work.
  • Backup quarterback Nick Foles had a handful of notable throws, including downfield completions to wide receiver Keke Coutee and tight end Jelani Woods.
  • Cornerback Kenny Moore II blew up a run play during 11-on-11 – though that shouldn't come as a surprise for a guy whose 102 tackles led all cornerbacks in 2021.

The Colts will hold a walkthrough on Friday that is not open to the public before welcoming fans back for a 7 p.m. practice on Saturday at Grand Park. Tickets for "Back Together Saturday" are no longer available.

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