Perhaps the biggest positive surprise for the Indianapolis Colts this year has been the emergence of tight end Jack Doyle.
A number three tight end who just got an RFA tender this offseason, the Colts entered the year counting on Doyle to be their number two tight end behind Dwayne Allen. But through seven games, Doyle has outplayed Allen and has been a huge part of the offense, catching 29 passes for 282 yards and four touchdowns. He’s been one of Andrew Luck’s favorite targets this year, and he’s a guy who is versatile and can do a lot of different things for the offense.
General manager Ryan Grigson said earlier this week that the versatility was one of the things that led the Colts to claim Doyle a few years ago, as he was a combo guy and has proven able to help in numerous roles, from special teams to a move tight end to a fullback type - and now, to a prominent target in the passing game.
One other thing you’ll find about Jack Doyle: his teammates absolutely love him. And today, after a career performance on Sunday in which Doyle caught nine passes for 78 yards and the game-winning score, punter Pat McAfee was wearing a Jack Doyle shirt.
"Jack (Doyle) Does Everything" pic.twitter.com/34MmWH91Yg— Kevin Bowen (@KBowenColts) October 26, 2016
McAfee joked that he hopes to get the shirt signed, but he also explained the meaning of it.
“This shirt here explains everything that is Jack Doyle, the Chuck Norris of the NFL,” McAfee said today, in a video posted by FOX59’s Larra Overton. “He is a guy who can block, you see him right here [points to picture on his shirt of Doyle blocking]. He’s rushing a punt right here [points to another picture]. He’s scoring a touchdown right here [points to a different picture], and if you look off in the distance he’s making an amazing catch [in the other picture], like he had two this past weekend. Great touchdowns. I mean, Jack Doyle is just a jack of all trades. Jack does everything. My favorite is the jack of hearts [points to one of the cards on his shirt], because Jack’s got a bit ol’ heart. He’s a Hoosier. And it’s just a great shirt; once I saw it I knew I had to wear it.”
McAfee also said that Doyle is “the greatest teammate in the history of teammates.” And that sentiment is something we’ve heard before, too.
“One of the best teammates that I have been with,” running back Frank Gore said of Doyle after Sunday’s game. “He is going to continue to do everything right every day. I am just proud of him. He always tries to do everything right, and when you do that, things happen for you like this. I’m very happy for him.
Ryan Grigson has similar thoughts. “You never worry about a guy like Jack Doyle getting a big head,” he said on Monday. “If there was ever a definition of a horseshoe guy, I think Andrew Luck, I think all those guys in that locker room would put his face up there of what the horseshoe’s about. And that’s just, you trust him with your life, you trust him to watch your one day old infant, you let him marry your daughter, he’s one of those guys.”
Doyle’s impact on-the-field cannot be ignored, either, as he’s having a very good season.
“You can’t put a price tag on him really,” head coach Chuck Pagano said on Monday. “He’s done nothing but do great things for this football team since he’s been here. He’s obviously developed into a guy that’s very valuable player. Very trustworthy in every role that he has. He’s always in the right spot. He’s always doing the right thing. If you throw him the football he’s probably going to catch it. He’s just a steady, steady, steady guy. You see, he comes into work every single day. He’s a great pro. He takes great pride in his work and what his job is and what his role is. Obviously, a huge, huge day for us yesterday. He played a key role, obviously, in that win. He’s playing really well in all phases – special teams, as a blocker and obviously as a pass catcher.”
Doyle has been impressive this year, and he’s been impressing his teammates for quite a while. He’s a great guy and a great teammate, and he’s a jack of all trades on the football field. Or, as Pat McAfee put it, he’s the Chuck Norris of the NFL. His shirt sums it up nicely: “Jack Does Everything.”