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Indianapolis Colts Rookie Report: Week 4 vs Raiders

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NFL: SEP 22 Falcons at Colts Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

For a more in-depth and holistic look at all snap counts, visit Chris Blystone’s story from Monday.


OFFENSE

ROOKIES

Wide receiver Parris Campbell saw another increase in his snap count this week, seeing 49 of 78 snaps, or 63%. He caught 5 passes for 25 yards on 8 targets. He was used less in the second half after suffering an abdominal injury and no longer returned kickoffs in the second half.

At this point, the young receivers have been unable to have the impact fans had hoped for in training camp.

SECOND YEAR

Quenton Nelson remains on this report. He had an uncharacteristically quiet game as the offensive line did well keeping Jacoby Brissett upright but was not particularly effective at moving the ball on the ground.

THIRD YEAR

Zach Pascal was on the field for 53 of 78 offensive snaps, or 68%. He caught 4 passes on 7 targets for 72 yards including a highlight reel catch that went for 28 yards. If there has been an offensive surprise in 2019, Pascal is it. He has been the second best receiver on the team with limited looks and is easily the most valuable receivers on the team in the blue collar aspects of the game — special teams play and blocking.


DEFENSE

ROOKIES

With Darius Leonard out of the lineup for a second consecutive week, Bobby Okereke took 57 of 67 snaps, or 85%. He finished with 7 tackles, including one tackle for a loss. While no play stands out as particularly embarrassing for Okereke, the drop-off at linebacker without Leonard is painfully obvious.

Rock Ya-Sin took every snap for the first time in his career. He tallied 4 tackles and a pass defensed. It is very clear that the coaching staff is high on Ya-Sin and is prepared to give him the reps he needs to improve at the NFL level. He has been inconsistent to start, which is pretty standard for rookie corners, but there is no meaningful time-share with Quincy Wilson, as there was in training camp.

Ben Banogu was on the field for 14 of 67 defensive snaps, or 21%. He used those limited snaps to make two tackles. It’s somewhat unfortunate that Indy’s young defensive linemen are not getting more of an opportunity. It’s a discouraging look for the future.

Khari Willis saw the field for every defensive snap. He finished second on the team with 9 tackles and added a tackle for a loss and pass defensed. He displayed good vision, speed, and pursuit ankles. He was a sure-tackler and clearly the best defensive player on the field for the Colts.

It will be fun to watch Willis continue to develop. The prospect of a Hooker and Willis pairing looks awfully good.

E.J. Speed saw a big jump in his usage, taking the field for 28 of 67 snaps, or 42%. He finished fifth on the team with 5 tackles and added a tackle for a loss. The biggest thing that stands out with Speed is just how much range he has when he is on the field. He tends to arrive early on plays and is able to track down the ball laterally.

There is no doubt that he still has some learning to do on the mental aspects of the game and his position but his physical tools are both rare and elite.

SECOND YEAR

Honestly, no second-year defensive player is deserving of a closer look in this contest.

THIRD YEAR

Anthony Walker took the field for every defensive snap. He led the team in tackles with 10 and added a sack. Strangely, while Walker continues to look good on paper, there is something that stands out without Darius Leonard. Walker at times takes bad angles and doesn’t always wrap up ball carriers. He also appears out of position in coverage at times.

Don’t misunderstand. I don’t want to imagine what the Colts would look like with Walker missing time and Leonard out. He is a veteran who produces. Still, I’d be curious to see how young players like Okereke or Speed could develop and perhaps move Walker to SAM.