Its safe to say that, so far during Khaled Holmes' tenure with the Colts, things haven't exactly gone according to plan. The hope, however, is that this season he will finally become the team's starting center and become entrenched in that spot - but first, he has to win a position battle with Jonotthan Harrison.
The Colts drafted Holmes in the fourth round of the 2013 NFL Draft out of USC, and the fact that he played in 40 games and started 37 in the Pac-12 conference at a prestigious school meant a lot to Colts general manager Ryan Grigson. He can play both guard and center, but during his first season with the team he didn't play much at either spot. He didn't play until week 15 of his first season, and though he appeared in three games total, he hardly played at all (and all of his action was at guard). Grigson doesn't necessarily like to play rookie linemen, however, and so the Colts were bringing Holmes along slowly. Entering the 2014 season, Holmes was firmly entrenched as the Colts' starting center. There was really no doubt about it all throughout the offseason and into training camp - Holmes was the guy. But then, in the first preseason game on the first drive, Holmes was injured. The injury put him out for the remainder of the preseason, and Jonotthan Harrison stepped in and played well. With Holmes' status for week one in doubt, the Colts signed A.Q. Shipley off of waivers and he started the first four games. The Colts then benched him for no reason in favor of Harrison, who then played the next ten games and failed to impress. Enter Khaled Holmes, who finally got his first start of the season (and of his career) in week sixteen against the Dallas Cowboys, taking over at center. He started the last two regular season games there and the three playoff games, helping the line to stay consistent throughout the playoff run. Holmes' play was a clear upgrade from Harrison, though still not spectacular.
In a sense, Holmes still hasn't gotten his chance. He hardly played at all in his rookie year and then he was supposed to be the starter in 2014 but that was delayed severely due to injury. He was supposed to be the week one starter and continue on for the rest of the season, but in reality he didn't make his first start until week sixteen. So now we enter his third season with the team, and he is involved in a battle for the starting center spot with Harrison. There are positives to both and negatives to both that people can talk about, and it's probably apparent that neither one will be a Pro Bowler at the spot this year. But if the Colts could get some semblance of consistency at the position, that would be huge. I think that Holmes has the edge in the center battle and I do think he is the one who ends up at the spot, but it will be a battle that will be decided in training camp. Perhaps Khaled Holmes will get his first real shot at being the Colts' starting center when the 2015 season rolls around.