After two practices with the soon-to-be preseason Week 1 visitor Carolina Panthers, the Colts’ defense continues to capture the attention of reporters, coaches and fans alike. They’re feasting on the opponent when given the opportunity.
Keep in mind, Indy’s defense is shining while missing a handful of important starters, like DeForest Buckner and first-round pick Kwity Paye.
In yesterday’s practice, team reporter Stephen Holder tweeted “Loving this start by the Colts’ defense in the first full team period vs the Carolina offense in joint practice. Indy dominated the first series.”
Loving this start by the Colts’ defense in the first full team period vs the Carolina offense in joint practice. Indy dominated the first series.— Stephen Holder (@HolderStephen) August 12, 2021
Holder followed that tweet with “Colts are living in the Carolina backfield so far. This is, um, impressive.”
Impressive indeed. The Colts’ defensive line and unit have been dominant throughout the last two practices.
Fellow team reporter and Indianapolis Star Insider Joel A. Erickson also noticed similar playmaking with Indy’s defense.
Erickson tweeted “Defense bounced back after initial hurry-up with two solid series. Grover Stewart with a sack, Banogu TFL.”
Defense bounced back after initial hurry-up with two solid series. Grover Stewart with a sack, Banogu TFL— Joel A. Erickson (@JoelAErickson) August 13, 2021
Banogu has been performing exceptionally well since the start of training camp. With or without pads, the third-year defensive end has caught the attention of many team reporters and coaches. Grover Stewart, who solidified himself as one of the league’s interior defensive tackles last season, has also had a strong camp.
Additionally, cornerback Kenny Moore has picked up where he left off last season, and he continues to show why many view him as one of the best, all-around corners in the NFL currently.
“Kenny Moore went 5-0 in 1-on-1’s over two days against DJ Moore and Robby Anderson. With like 5 PBUs. Hard to be more impressive than that,” Erickson tweeted.
Kenny Moore went 5-0 in 1-on-1’s over two days against DJ Moore and Robby Anderson.— Joel A. Erickson (@JoelAErickson) August 13, 2021
With like 5 PBUs.
Hard to be more impressive than that
Ultimately, we know where Indy’s defense struggled last season. While they were considered ‘very good’ to many, they weren’t really able to take that next step up into the ‘elite’ category. I’d imagine with what’s been put on display at camp thus far, the Colts’ defense could likely take a major step up defensively this season.
And with the legitimate possibility of being down multiple starters to start the regular season — including quarterback Carson Wentz and left guard Quenton Nelson, the Colts are going to need their defense to be as dominant as we’ve seen so far. It’s hard enough to win in the NFL as it is, and missing two of your top players makes things even more difficult.
The defense could certainly be a major help to Jacob Eason, who may get the nod to start for the team’s Week 1 season-opener against the Seattle Seahawks. Time will tell.
Indy’s first preseason game is this Sunday, August 15 at 1:00 pm, where we’ll get the opportunity to see what the defense is capable of during its first in-game action of the 2021 season.