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Stampede Blue Tweetbag: Talking Donte Moncrief, Khaled Holmes, and More

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Stampede Blue's Josh Wilson answers questions about the Colts submitted via twitter.

Andy Lyons

Answering your twitter questions about the Colts:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-conversation="none" lang="en"><p><a href="https://twitter.com/Coltsfanwilson">@Coltsfanwilson</a> When do you expect Moncrief to start stealing Nicks&#39; snaps and targets? To me its already overdue</p>&mdash; Jeremy Larson (@zmanhere) <a href="https://twitter.com/zmanhere/status/521821011809808385">October 14, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

I've said it before, but the more I watch Hakeem Nicks play the more I want to see Donte Moncrief.  It's not just this year that has been disappointing for Nicks, it has been the last couple of years as well and he just has not had the bounce-back year that many thought he would have in Indy.  Nicks' timing with Andrew Luck looks no better than it did in training camp.  That timing hasn't improved.  And Nicks' inability to create separation has been noticeable as well, and a problem.  Moncrief is a very promising young receiver with the ability to stretch the field.  We've already seen the Colts make a move with the future in mind in benching A.Q. Shipley for Jonotthan Harrison at center, and I think they should do something similar with Moncrief.  We all know that Nicks' isn't the long-term answer (just like Shipley), but Moncrief really might be (like Harrison).  I'm all for giving Moncrief more reps this year, and furthermore I think he could help a lot this year too, not just in the future.  I'm not sure when - or if - the Colts will really begin to give Moncrief the snaps over Nicks, but I think it should happen.  The more I watch Nicks, the more I'm on team #FeedMoncrief.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-conversation="none" lang="en"><p><a href="https://twitter.com/Coltsfanwilson">@Coltsfanwilson</a> Saw the Colts worked out Trindon Holliday. Think they make the change from Griff?</p>&mdash; James Culp (@LawCulp) <a href="https://twitter.com/LawCulp/status/521821846858371072">October 14, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

The reason for the Colts reportedly working out Trindon Holliday is certainly as a return option.  I really don't think it's surprising, however.  No, Griff Whalen's job isn't safe, but it never has been.  The Colts will consider their options, including replacing Whalen as their returner.  But the reason the Colts have yet to do so and the reason I'm hesitant to really advocate for it is because Griff has been solid.  He's not the flashy returner, but I think he's done a solid job and he doesn't really hurt the team (other than that Ravens game, but I think we've seen enough to show that was an aberration and not the norm).  The Colts know this, but they also know (like you and I do) that you can do better.  As such, the Colts will continue to explore their options and Whalen is a guy who is replaceable, but the Colts will continue to be hesitant to do so because they realize that, while they can do much better, they can also do much, much worse (see last year with David Reed returning kicks).

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-conversation="none" lang="en"><p><a href="https://twitter.com/Coltsfanwilson">@Coltsfanwilson</a> Personnally who are your 3 favorite Colts of all time not named Manning or Luck. For me it&#39;s B. Sanders,E. James,R. Wayne.</p>&mdash; Dan Schulte (@showltee) <a href="https://twitter.com/showltee/status/521824272994426880">October 14, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

Fun question.  I think everyone who knows me knows that my number one is easy - Peyton Manning.  There's not even a question there.  But since we're excluding Peyton, I'll name a couple of my other favorites.  There are two that are definitely in the top three (aside from Peyton) and then a host of others I'd consider as the last one in the top three.  The two that are definitely there are Edgerrin James and Reggie Wayne.  I loved Edge's running style, his personality, and just everything else about his play and tenure in Indy.  Reggie is Reggie, and he's not only a terrific player but also a team leader and fan favorite.  Both of these guys are the epitome of classic Colts and they are two of my all-time favorites.  I also really liked Dwight Freeney, Jeff Saturday, and Marvin Harrison, and I'd probably have to choose between one of them to round out this top three, but I have a hard time doing so.  But yeah, there are a lot of guys that I really like.  As a Colts fan, the last 17 years have been very special.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-conversation="none" lang="en"><p><a href="https://twitter.com/Coltsfanwilson">@Coltsfanwilson</a> What (if any) impact do you think Chudzinski has had on the Colts/Pagano/Pep?</p>&mdash; J.R. Pierce (@TheJRP12) <a href="https://twitter.com/TheJRP12/status/521836196667097090">October 14, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

I've received this question a lot, as a lot of people are wondering about Rob Chudzinski because they haven't heard anything about him.  But really, how often do we hear about or from an assistant coach?  Chud isn't a coordinator or anything, so it's nothing abnormal not to hear anything about him.  Even as a former NFL head coach, he is (rightfully) being overshadowed by Chuck Pagano, Pep Hamilton, Greg Manusky, and Tom McMahon on the Colts coaching staff.  But I'll also answer the question by saying that I do think Chud has had an impact.  I think that he has certainly helped the Colts turn the attention and the focus of the offense more toward Luck, though we also must be clear to give Pep plenty of praise for his improvements as well.  Chud has also helped Chuck Pagano in things, and I think that some of Pagano's clear improvement has been helped by Chud too.  Ultimately, however, I think that this talk about Rob Chudzinski is basically a question about how much praise to give the other coaches, and I think that Pagano and the coordinators deserve a lot of credit for what we've seen so far.  I wouldn't ignore Chud's impact because it certainly is there, but I don't think it is as great as some might imagine.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-conversation="none" lang="en"><p><a href="https://twitter.com/StampedeBlue">@StampedeBlue</a> Is the plan on the O-line to put Mewhort at LG, keep Harrison at C, Louis at RG? If so, where does that leave Holmes?</p>&mdash; Kenneth Goad (@Darksteel0509) <a href="https://twitter.com/Darksteel0509/status/521821824381120513">October 14, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

Jack Mewhort is the starting left guard, Jonotthan Harrison is the starting center, and Hugh Thornton is the starting right guard.  For the time being, as long as those three are healthy they will be starting at their positions.  As for Khaled Holmes, though, this is a question that a lot of fans have.  Mainly, fans have these questions about why Holmes is inactive and isn't starting at center because of how much Ryan Grigson talked him up during the offseason and because of how confident Grigson was in him this offseason in having him clearly as the starting center.  That's where the surprise has come from.  I was clear all offseason that I was hesitant about starting him (I didn't say it was bad, but I had big questions) and that, aside from Grigson's comments, I had seen nothing to indicate he should be the starting center.  His not being able to get on the field last year despite the big struggles on the line were huge red flags to me.  The more I looked at Jonotthan Harrison, the more I liked him as an option over Holmes.  I didn't think it was a great move to yank A.Q. Shipley out of the starting lineup when he was playing well (though I think long-term the move could turn out to be a good one), but I didn't really question whatsoever playing Harrison over Holmes.  The Colts like Harrison better, and I do too.  Because Ryan Grigson talked up Khaled Holmes so much this offseason, many are wondering why he isn't starting.  But looking at things a little closer, I don't think it's a surprise or a bad move for Holmes not to be in there right now.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p><a href="https://twitter.com/Coltsfanwilson">@Coltsfanwilson</a> do you think you the staff is coaching more aggressively "to win" strategically than we’ve ever seen from Colts’ coaches?</p>&mdash; Corey Blevins (@cjblev) <a href="https://twitter.com/cjblev/status/521852382611664898">October 14, 2014</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

The coaching staff has done a tremendous job in these past four weeks.  Absolutely tremendous.  I think we've seen a lot of improvement out of Chuck Pagano, Pep Hamilton, and Greg Manusky, and I'll have an article talking more in depth about this in the next day or two.  But I think that it's hard not to be impressed with them in the past month, and while there are things to complain about or things that they missed, I think that's just nit-picking at this point, because Chuck Pagano and his staff are doing the most to actually help their team win of any point in his tenure, and I don't think it's close, either.