Mock game situations events like the annual Blue v. White scrimmage can often be the difference between one player earning a roster spot and another cleaning out his dorm room. Don't take my word on that (because I'm not there). Instead, take Jim Caldwell's. When discussing one of his keys for the scrimmage and for this weekend, Caldwell said:
We’re always looking in evaluating. There’s some guys at some key positions, some young guys, that got to come along. They’ve got to start to play better. And so we’ll be doing a real, hard, cold assessment of a number of guys this weekend.
What this means is while players have today off (many of whom went back to Indianapolis to hang out), the Colts coaches are in the film room looking over tape of the scrimmage and other practices. After the jump, we talk about the players who should be sweating.
Obviously, since we haven't seen any Colts pre-season games yet, it's hard to really know who will make the final 53 and who will get cut. But, right now, we've got a decent idea as to who falls into the category of "young guys that got to come along." Unless these players do something, anything, in practices or pre-season, they will not make the final 53 man roster.
Ray Fisher, CB
Where is this guy? Since camp opened, I've read more reports listing him as sitting out from practices than anyone else other than Clint Session. Is he hurt? If he is, it's not on the injury sheet. Even when he does practice, I'm not seeing anything that makes him stand out. Also, almost every single special teams report I've gotten I have not seen Fisher listed as a consistent returner on punts and kicks. Hell, I think I've seen Anthony Gonzalez's name more in that area than Fisher's, and returning punts and kicks is THE reason fisher was drafted. With Deshea Townsend now in the fold, Fisher better start making something happen as a DB. Otherwise, there will be no reason to keep him on the roster come September.
Vuna Tuihalamaka, LB
The kid we nick-named "The Flying Death Squirrel" before he chopped off all his hair has not turned heads at camp. Haven't heard anyone mention his name in any camp report. He's working with the third string defense, which means he will get cut in September unless he impresses someone. Right now, Ramon Humber is the back-up SAM linebacker. If Vuna wants to make the team, he needs to supplant Humber. That won't be easy. Humber is a good special teams player.
Andy Alleman, OG
My opinion of Alleman has not changed since he tweaked his back during Friday's practice. Injured or not, the guy is done. The Colts were using him as the third string center on Thursday night, and he was dreadful. The only way this guy can possibly keep a job here is if Charlie Johnson's sprained foot is worse than we currently know. Right now, the guards for this club are Tony Ugoh, Kyle DeVan, Mike Pollak, and Jamey Richard. Jacques McClendon has been moved from guard to center. If Charlie is out for a while, then maybe the Colts will keep Alleman due to the need to slide Ugoh back over to left tackle. But, right now, that's doubtful. Alleman might be one of the very first cuts this the team needs to make. Also in the same boat with Alleman is Jaimie Thomas. Like Alleman, Thomas is a guard. Also like Alleman, he hasn't done anything in camp so far to warrant further employment with the Colts.
Javarris James, RB
Edgerrin James' baby cousin hasn't looked "bad" in camp, but on a team with three firmly entrenched running backs in Joseph Addai, Donald Brown, and Mike Hart (along with special teams skat back Brandon James), not looking "bad" is not enough to warrant a roster spot. Javarris offers little as a return man, which means he needs to prove his mettle as a short yardage back. So far, other than getting lit up by Bob Sanders in the Thursday night practice, Javarris hasn't done enough to make Mike Hart start looking over his shoulder. Javarris seems more like a practice squad type of player. If he wants to make the final 53, he needs to start proving he has a nose for the end zone.