Welcome to the second edition of the Pipe Dream Prospectus. I must admit I've been swamped with work and school so I haven't had enough time to concentrate on finishing a couple projects I've been working on such as this and the Voice Of The Fan series as well. Nevertheless, I'm all caught up and I'm ready to rock out with my...well I'm ready to go.
Alrighty then, wide receiver. This is a position that has polarized most of this site on whether we actually need one or not. I'd say the majority (albeit slight majority) is in favor of drafting a WR with the Colts' first pick in the draft this year. And then there's the other side, which I agree with, that thinks we should concentrate on defense or other "problem" areas, which there are plenty of. There is also a small, very small concentration of people who don't really care either way but would prefer to just take the best player available no matter what the position is. To those people I would like to say kindly say: MAKE UP YOUR MIND!
Looking at the depth chart, the Colts technically have a lot of depth. The problem being that it is, for the most part, untested depth. Anthony Gonzalez, Reggie Wayne, Taj Smith, Sam Giguere, Pierre Garcon, and Roy Hall comprise what is the Colts' receiving corps. All of us should be familiar with Wayne and Gonzo. Most of us are familiar with Garcon and Hall. Some of us are familiar with Giguere. And then just about none of use have any clue who Taj Smith is and what he is doing on the roster.
The argument regularly used by those for drafting a receiver in the first round is that the Colts need a third receiver, and I agree with that. I just don't agree with the idea that the Colts have to spend another first round pick on another receiver. I'm adamantly opposed to not giving the receivers who the Colts have been grooming for 1 or 2 years at least one shot at showing us what they are made of in crunch time. Roy Hall was a 5th round draft pick in 2007 by the Colts. The main reason most Colts fans don't have any faith in Roy Hall is because of the injuries he's had. That was my beef with him too for a while until I looked into his injury history. He missed most of the 2007 season (his rookie season), being placed on IR, because of a devastating collision he had with Cedric Killings (sweet name tbh) of the Texans on a special teams play. After I read this a couple questions popped up in my head. The first being: What the hell is Roy Hall doing on special teams? And the second being: Hmm, I wonder who won the battle? The collision was pretty bad. So bad that it damaged a vertebra in Killings' back, forcing him to retire at the age of 31. Roy Hall did win the battle, but he didn't come out of it unscathed. He was placed on IR after the play which ended his season. Which also halted any and all progress he could have had by practicing. Although, if he played for the Pats he would have been right back out there on the practice field even on IR. But that's ok, it's the Pats.
So basically, it was a freak accident. Roy Hall was injured doing what some tool of a special teams coach made him. But whatever, I'm not devoting another minute to Russ Purnell, he doesn't deserve it.
In 2008 he suffered a knee injury that basically ruined any chance he had to play with the starters. Yet again bringing up the question of why he was playing on special teams. He's a freakin receiver not a linebacker (although he is bigger, well was bigger than most of our linebackers). So maybe it's just me, but if he stopped playing on special teams, I don't think he'd be so "injury prone."
Having said that, Polian was intrigued with Roy Hall for a few reasons. Polian did spend a 5th round pick on him. His large build (6'3", 240 lbs) and freakish athleticism could be used to cause mismatches against opposing defenses. You know teams like the Patriots and the Chargers who have big slow linebackers. The problem being though, no one here is willing to give him a chance to show us what he's made of. People are calling for a receiver NOW who will start NOW, but we both know that isn't going to happen. Unless Wayne or Gonzo go down, the receiver the Colts pick up in the first round won't sniff the field unless he just blows everyone away during training camp. But something tells me that isn't going to happen, especially with the way Garcon and Hall have impressed the Colts thus far.
The other receiver on the roster I want to see given a chance is Pierre Garcon. Yeah I'm aware he played at a small school, but if you have ever watched tape of him playing, he does stuff on the field that would burn any player on any team. The guy has some natural talent that's for sure. He was also a 6th round pick in last years draft. So he's going into his sophomore year with a full year of coaching and plenty of time to learn the Colts offense under his belt. The reason he didn't get to see any playing time last year was because Marvin was actually healthy and Gonzo filled in as the 3rd option, and rightfully so. But things are different now. There is a vacant spot as the 3rd option not named Dallas Clark for Hall and Garcon to duke it out and see who's the best fit. I don't think anyone will disagree that both of these guys have the talent, they just need a shot to prove whether or not that can perform. Otherwise, you're just saying that the bestest drafter in the whole widest world busted two years in a row on receivers. And to be quite honest, I find that hard to believe.
The other argument that people trying using to justify the drafting of another receiver is so the Colts can "replace Marvin," which is a load of crap. That's what Gonzo was drafted for! He is Marvin's replacement, deal with it. Gonzo plays better from the outside, and that's been quite obvious the past two years. That's where he feels the most comfortable, and that's where I believe he will produce the most. I don't think some people realize that a slot receiver is the 3rd option in most offenses, especially in the Colts'. You don't put your 1b receiver in the slot just because. You put your two best options on the outside, and your third option is to be used to create mismatches, and is basically a posssession receiver which is why Clark plays so good from the slot, and Stokely did too.
I don't know enough about Giguere or Smith, but I think I've made my point pretty clear. We need to see what Hall and Garcon are made of. Too much time, money, and draft picks have been used on these guys just to throw them away.
Now then, rant aside, let's get this puppy back on track.
The list of free agent wide receivers is huge, but that doesn't really surprise me all that much. There were a few notable players out there, and still are, that I think could benefit the Colts. Now I'm sure most of you are saying to yourself, "Yeah but King, you just made me waste 10 minutes of life reading your nonsense about how we need to give Hall and Garcon a chance to start. Why should we waste our time reading about some free agents you want to see the Colts pick up?" And my retort to that would be, because that's the point of this segment fool!
I'm mainly going to concentrate on 3rd option receivers; 1) Because they are cheaper and 2) Because that's what we need, sort of. So this rules out Marvin Harrison, Plaxico Burress, Ike Hillard, Torry Holt, etc.
The guy who stood out most to me, thanks to monstersbox for mentioning him, was Lance Moore. If you aren't aware, Lance Moore is a RFA with the Saints. The problem is, he is a RFA, and the Saints just lost David Patten through free agency. Their #1 receiver is obviously Marques Colston. And as it stands, Lance Moore could move into the #2 spot, considering Devery Henderson is nothing more than a deep threat like Bernard Berrian. Lance is shorter than most receivers, standing at around 5'9", but what he lacks in height, he makes up for in elusiveness and great route running. He has a great work ethic and intagibles are second to none, and his character is top notch. He fits the mold of a Colts receiver to the T no doubt, and if he had someone like, oh I don't know, Peyton Manning throwing to him, he could really provide some even more stability to an already great passing game. The best thing about Lance Moore is the fact he's only 25 years old. He's still a little pup.
Another guy who stood out to me was Shaun McDonald. McDonald, in my opinion, is a pretty underrated receiver. He isn't spectacular, but as a slot receiver, he could provide another solid receiving option for Peyton. He's also on the shorter side, around 5'10", but is also fairly young being 27 years old. He runs pretty good routes and has very dependable hands. The only thing that would make me hesitant when it comes to pulling the trigger on signing him is his injury history. There isn't anything that is too alarming, but when something starts to become a trend problems are bound to come.
That's all I've got. Let's hear your pipe dreams.