My Top Ten Defensive Projects to watch for in 2014

E-Thug (Thugs have feelings & opinions too) made a good point in the comments to a post. If you don’t like what’s being said, leave or write your own post. So, I’m writing my own post.

Disclaimer, I’m a homer of the highest degree. I’m just old enough to have starting listening to Colts and Pacer games on the radio (Damn black-outs). I love all things INDIANA. I’m the jerk that visits your town and wears nothing but Indiana sports gear all week. I only mention this because I won’t be responding to negative comments about my beloved team. Not that I don’t respect your opinion but, I just have plenty of negativity to read everywhere else, including this site.

Speaking of that negativity, give Brad a break. I consider him the Drill Sergeant of our family. He may seem over the top but, he means well and, he brings us to together. We are unified by his style of writing and, it brings out some of the most well thought out counters on any sports site that I read (Minus of few trolls).

So, in honor of my favorite non-sports site: Listverse. I will be compiling top ten lists about the colts, starting with the Defensive projects.

10) Zach Kerr (DL) - I love UDFA’s. It’s like gambling on the penny slots. It probably won’t break you and, you still got a chance to win cash. Plus, they are hungry and offended by not getting their name called. I would love to put him and the next guys higher on the list but, they are UDFA’s. Kerr is a big dude. Kerr is also very nimble for his size (300+lbs on a 6ft frame). If he can translate his skills from small school to the pro’s, with our depth (or lack of) at NT, I think he has a shot at making the roster.

9) "Qua" Cox (CB) - Taking away my love for Jackson States wonderful marching band, this guy has me excited. But, my reason is not scouting related. Don’t get me wrong, if you look at the film on this guy, he is a shutdown cover corner (In a very small conference). My excitement however is from his Walk. Yes, his walk. Look at his tape and watch him walk after the play. He has the Bob Sanders swag and the hair. If you don’t grin and have a bobzilla flashback on pure attitude alone, watch it again. Corners must be that cocky.

8) Dewey McDonald (SS) – There’s a theme here and it’s not from me. If you go to sites that contain small school stars or hidden gems, you will find that Grigson must have read those articles and added them to his board. I may get it for saying this but, the traits we loved in Jimmy Ward, McDonald poses. He like the two mentioned above just did it on a smaller level. I wager he has the best chance to stick based on skillset and position.

7) Daniel Adongo (OLB) – No list of Colts projects can be complete without listing the man beast we know as Daniel Adongo. We did a lot of redshirting last year. Hopefully a few work out. But, it’s hard not to be excited about seeing if this guy can learn how to play. Generally other postions are known to have players from other sports be successful (Basketball to TE, Soccer to Kicker, and Track star to WR/RB). Linebacker isn’t a common one. Which makes it all the more intriguing plus, if he ever gets a shot at a QB, I feel bad for said QB.

6) Sheldon Price (CB) – Seems like with all the redshirting going on, it is easy to forget about how good a player was once perceived. Price has the size (6’2) to be that tall lanky cover corner we all have been pining for, like having a receiver taller than 5’11. I yelled at the screen when the saints took Jean- Baptise before we picked. Who knows if Grigs would have taken him or not? One can only dream, or hope Sheldon Price gets the magical Pagano secondary coaching treatment.

5) Andrew Jackson (ILB) – Although we have an increasingly deep set of inside linebackers, I like this pick in the draft. We have some that can cover, blitz, tackle, and call plays at the line. We were missing a THUMPER. To stop the run, you need someone who isn’t afraid to send someone out for a "water break" with the training staff. I think the "Prez" is that guy.

4) Loucheiz Purifoy (CB) – He’s listed as the highest UDFA because, unlike the above players. This guy has played in a big time school in a big time conference. Honestly, you could swap him and Price in the order. I have him higher because we don’t yet know if he will need a redshirted year like Price. This was highly rated CB and like a certain Pacer player, he’s just a knucklehead who is his own worst enemy. These guys tend to do well in veteran led locker rooms. It’s when they’re the best player and default leader where they run into trouble.

3) Jonathan Newsome (DE/OLB) – Keeping with the knucklehead theme, I like Newsome. Now, as mentioned above I’m a homer and last I checked Ball State was an Indiana school. So, don’t be too hard on me for having him so high on the list. I also really like the slower Robert Mathis comparisons. Who else better to learn from than the guy you are compared to? By my count we have 1 solid pass rusher. We need more, period.

2) Bjoern Werner (OLB) – Speaking of pass rush, I can’t wait for training camp to come around. Year 2 is always a big year for players and, I really thought Werner started to play well towards the end of the season. He even forced an INT in the playoffs with his pressure. We should take comfort into knowing that Pag’s is a secondary expert, Chud is a tight end beast maker, and the hated (at least I do) Manusky seems to have one useful skill, developing linebackers.

1) Montori Hughes (DL) – The "Cat" didn’t really live up to his moniker last year but, I thought he showed flashes. If he can put it together, we have a big versatile set of defensive linemen coming up the pipeline. It took a lot for me not to include Josh Chapman; I actually thought he played better than given credit for. Nose tackles aren’t flashy players; they occupy space and hopefully double teams. If we get more consistent NT play where we can let Hughes and A.Jones play more DE or 34 DT, our stopping the run and forcing the pass strategy will work.

That’s it. Sorry if I left out players you like. Please feel free to list your top ten in the comments. I also apologize for any grammar errors. Lastly GO COLTS!!

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Stampede Blue's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Stampede Blue's writers or editors.

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