Jabaal Sheard can do it all from the outside linebacker position

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The Patriots signed Sheard in 2015, after he spent the first four seasons of his career with the Cleveland Browns.

In Super Bowl LI, Sheard played 47 percent of the Patriots’ defensive snaps and had a half sack of Matt Ryan.

When the Patriots traded Chandler Jones last September, that move thrusted Sheard into a bigger role.

Jabaal Sheard can do it all from the outside linebacker position: he’s effective in stopping the run, he can drop back and provide solid coverage and Indianapolis Colts jerseys, of course, he’s a relentless pass rusher.

And now he’s being counted on to help lead the way for the Indianapolis Colts’ defensive makeover for the 2017 season.

After Sunday’s practice, Chuck Pagano spoke very highly of Hooker. Pagano said Hooker is further along than the staff could have hoped after just one week of practice. Is Week Two of camp when we see Hooker take consistent starting reps?

Mingo, then, is a player looking to put it all together after the Cleveland Browns took him sixth overall in the 2013 NFL Draft. A freak of an athlete, Mingo hasn’t quite been the pass rush threat many had hoped – he had five sacks his rookie season, two sacks the next season and hasn’t registered a sack the previous two seasons with the Browns and the New England Patriots – but he has 11 career passes defensed, as well as an interception.

Pagano said after practice that nothing should be read into Luck being at practice the last two days possibly leading to an imminent return. Luck remains on the PUP list. The Colts are five weeks away from their regular season opener.

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After never even sniffing the playoffs in four years with the Browns, Mingo finally got to experience something on his mind since college.

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Indianapolis Colts Long Pass Pullover Hoodie Royal Blue

While Simon has yet to record a regular season interception as he enters his fifth season in the NFL, he certainly takes pride in his coverage skills, and appreciates the help of those around him as they try to continue working on the overall goal of creating more takeaways as a unit.

“Vontae did a hell of a job just being able to put that ball in play for the rest of the defense, getting his hands on the ball,” Simon said. “It was, pretty much, just great coverage and trying to capitalize on our opportunities and put our offense in good field position.”

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Sheard, meanwhile, displayed the explosiveness on Sunday that makes Pagano believe he can be a double-digit sack guy for the Colts and defensive coordinator Ted Monachino.

“I think we came out there and did some good things; obviously did some things poorly that we’ll have to go on the film and correct,” Simon said. “Gave up zero points, so that’s a plus, but gave up some big plays here and there, which we’ll have to limit.

One of the main storylines of free agency for the Colts has been Chris Ballard’s revamping of the outside linebacker position.

“I think next week we’ll be playing more and more reps, so we’re going to have to treat it more like a game week going into next week,” Simon continued. “They’re another good team that we’re going to have to go up against, and it’s going to be a good challenge for us to see where we really are.”

Coming off two straight 8-8 seasons is obviously disappointing, and as a result a lot of people write the Colts off this season and I don’t really understand why. Now, I’m not saying that the Colts are going to compete for a Super Bowl this year. That’s just unrealistic, but I can absolutely see them getting back into the playoffs this year. Pretty easily in fact. Provided Luck returns to form after his shoulder surgery in January, he should be even better without the lingering injury he dealt with all of 2016, and he was pretty good in 2016. The offensive line remains intact from last season, and I saw improvements towards the end of the year. Defensively, there’s no way we can be as bad in 2017.