With a week and a half of training camp under their belt, there is still a long way to go before the Colts reach decisions on their depth chart. Even once the final 53-man roster is set at cutdowns, it won’t be over. Chris Ballard will be churning the roster all season, likely eyeing teams that will make cuts that could bolster weak positions on the roster.
However, it seems as good a time as any to take a look through the depth chart and make some projections based on how things are stacking up so far.
Offense - 24
Quarterback – 2
This shouldn’t surprise anyone. Andrew Luck has looked like the guy we saw lead this team from pathetic to an AFC Championship game while carrying a coach and general manager as dead weight. Jacoby Brissett struggled last season to emulate Luck’s brilliance, but has had a good offseason and is still one of the best backup quarterbacks in football.
Missed the cut: Brad Kaaya, Phillip Walker
Running Back – 4
The running back position is going to be a contentious one. It is far from settled at this point, and as we’ve discussed several times throughout camp so far, who the “starter” is will be less important in Reich’s system than in some others. The Colts are likely to keep 4 backs and use all of them a solid amount. The rookies Jordan Wilkins and Nyheim Hines have gotten a lot of use in camp so far, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see Wilkins take on a significant role in the running game early. Turbin’s suspension could hurt him if Christine Michael shows up in the preseason and makes an impact, but right now I think he keeps his spot.
Missed the cut: Christine Michael, Josh Ferguson
Tight End: 4
The tight ends are one of the deeper and more competitive groups on the roster. Jack Doyle is the proven player who is the picture of consistency. Ebron has already developed a fantastic chemistry with Luck and will definitely be a weapon. Ross Travis was a player who flashed some late in the 2017 season and might just steal the 3rd spot right out from under Erik Swoope, who really needs a big year.
Missed the cut: Mo Alie-Cox, Darrell Daniels
Wide Receiver – 6
Another group in flux, everything except the top spot is wide open. T.Y. Hilton is king here, but the competition is on outside of that. I think they keep six here, but the preseason games will play a major role in letting some of these rookies show what they can do.
Missed the cut: Steve Ishmael, James Wright, Dres Anderson, Kasen Williams, Zach Pascal, Krishawn Hogan, Seantavius Jones
Offensive Line – 8
This offensive line group is the deepest the Colts have fielded since the days of Peyton Manning. The Colts would love to see Denzelle Good beat out Austin Howard for the right tackle spot, and have Braden Smith challenging Matt Slauson for snaps at right guard. Any way you look at it, this is a group that should not be the weakness it has been in years past.
Missed the cut: Jared Machorro, Tyreek Burwell, Jeremy Vujnovich, Mark Glowinski, Le’Raven Clark, Deyshawn Bond
Defense - 26
Defensive Tackle – 4
The Colts have done a lot of work on their defensive line, and the defensive tackle position has looked pretty much the same across the board so far. The first team has been all Al Woods and Denico Autry. There will be a lot of rotation along the line, so expect guys to move around and rotate out often.
Missed the cut: Caraun Reid, Hassan Ridgeway, Rakeem Nunez-Roches, Tomasi Laulile.
Defensive End - 6
Like defensive tackle, the defensive end position will work on rotations and rely on speed. This unit has to get hits on the quarterback and has rotated a lot during camp. It is notable that rookie Kemoko Turay has been getting first team snaps with the defense for the last couple practices, however I still expect this to be a rotation where lots of guys get on the field.
Missed the cut: Anthony Johnson
Linebacker - 6
The starters at linebacker if the season began today would almost certainly be Darius Leonard at the WILL, Skai Moore at MIKE, and Najee Goode as the SAM. This has been the grouping getting first team reps for most of camp since Anthony Walker hurt his hamstring. It is an unnerving group but one that has a chance to outshine expectations for it, which are relatively low.
Missed the cut: Antonio Morrison, Jeremiah George, Tyrell Adams, William Ossai
Cornerback – 6
This is the group that is the most worrisome and possibly the most unknown. There is almost no proven talent on the roster, and a ton to prove. Andrew Luck has spent camp carving this group up, but the question is whether that is a matter of Luck’s talent or this group’s lack of it. The Colts really need big second years from Wilson, Moore, and Hairston.
Missed the cut: Henre’ Toliver, Lashard Durr, Robert Jackson
Safety - 4
With rumors circulating that Hooker and Geathers may come off PUP in the coming week, this is a unit that improves quickly. Those two will have to come back slowly to guarantee a full and setback-free recovery, but they are a solid safety group and when healthy are a source of encouragement. Matthias Farley has proven himself a valuable asset as well in Geathers’ absence. For whatever reason, Chris Ballard seems to like T.J. Green, and the guy has gotten first team reps most of camp until he was banged up in practice.
Missed the cut: Ronald Martin, Chris Cooper, George Odum
Special Teams – 3
Kicker – 1
Missed the cut: Kicker Michael Badgley
Punter – 1
Long Snapper – 1