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Colts 2015 Player Preview: Cornerback Greg Toler

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The Indianapolis Colts will report to training camp on August 1 with a 90-man roster, and we'll be taking a look at every single player on the roster (though it obviously will change some) as we approach camp. Today, we look at cornerback Greg Toler.

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Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

There are few players on the Colts' roster that can generate the range of opinions and discussion that cornerback Greg Toler can.  There are a number of fans who think that he is absolutely terrible, while there are also fans who think that he does a pretty good job at what the Colts ask him to do.

So what's the reality when it comes to Toler?  It's somewhere in the middle, as it often is with these types of discussion (see Pagano, Chuck).  In two years with the Colts, Toler has played in 24 of a possible 32 games due to injury, starting 22 of them.  According to Pro Football Focus, he has allowed 93 receptions on 167 targets for 1,336 yards, 13 touchdowns, and three interceptions, allowing an opposing passer rating of 100.3 (including playoffs).  That's not among the worst in the league, but it's still not very good.  In 2014, he allowed an opposing passer rating of 97.3 (including playoffs) - but here's an interesting part of that.  If you take away one horrific performance he had against the Dallas Cowboys in which he allowed four receptions for 81 yards and three scores, his opposing passer rating for the season (fourteen regular season games and three playoff games) was 86.4, more than ten points lower than his passer rating for the season including the Cowboys game.  I don't include that to absolve him from blame from that game but rather to show that, in reality, he's not as bad as many Colts fans think he is, though still not very good.

At the same time, however, Toler plays a specific role for the Colts in their defense and he does so capably.  They ask their corners to play press man coverage and often times on an island, and doing that while playing opposite of Vontae Davis is a specific role that is difficult to fill.  Greg Toler does so and, for what the Colts ask him to do, he does an average job at it.

Greg Toler is entering the final season of his contract with the Colts and it's very uncertain whether they will re-sign him next offseason or not, but at least for 2015 he is very likely to be a starting cornerback once again as the team brings back their trio of Vontae Davis, Greg Toler, and Darius Butler.  Toler is clearly the weakest link of that trio, but he'll be a part of it nonetheless - at least for one more year.