Doyle this week may enter a new chapter in his career

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The Colts signed Alie-Cox last Friday, in an effort to see if the Joe Reitz/Erik Swoope magic still exists with Chris Ballard now calling the shots in Indy.

Flip that calendar forward a year and Doyle is a newly signed man and atop the tight end depth chart in his hometown of Indianapolis.

Swoope has gone from never playing football just a couple of years ago, to the Colts’ No. 2 tight end, a role Rob Chudzinski used like a starter last season. Last year’s No. 2 tight end, Doyle, played more than two-thirds of the team’s offensive snaps.

Especially a California native, who played collegiately at the University of Miami, like Erik Swoope.

“When he is out there on the field, I don’t look at him and think he is still developing. He is out there like anybody, to help this team win — and he is,” Luck said this week of Swoope. “He is doing a heck of a job.”

Swoope’s story has been told many times, but it still stands to be repeated, due to the almost unprecedented nature he has found his way onto an NFL 53-man roster.

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He spent much of his first two seasons in Indianapolis on the Colts’ practice squad, at first just learning the basics of the game of football before he could get into any of the specifics. Slowly but surely, however, Swoope showed an ability to Indianapolis Colts jersey authentic retain what he was learning and apply it on the practice field and in the meeting room, and on Dec. 30, 2015, he was signed to the team’s active roster and participated in his first regular-season NFL game Week 17 against the Tennessee Titans, playing six snaps on offense and 15 snaps on special teams.

Erik Swoope’s journey of basketball player-turned NFL tight end has been told many times, but it bears repeating after his earning a major milestone in his football career on Sunday in the Indianapolis Colts’ critical victory over the Minnesota Vikings. Nike Colts #19 Johnny Unitas White Men's NFL Pro Line Fashion Game Jersey

That’s been Brandon Williams’ story so far throughout his NFL career.

In 45 career games with the Carolina Panthers, Miami Dolphins and Seattle Seahawks, Williams has logged just one start, which came last season in Seattle. And since going undrafted out of Oregon in 2012, and then signing with the Panthers in 2013, he has been targeted just 11 total times, logging six career catches for 80 yards (13.3 yards per catch).

If the Colts do involve Williams in the passing game next year, he will be looking to add to the six career catches in four NFL seasons.

Just prior to the 2017 NFL Combine, reports leaked that Jack Doyle was likely to test the free agent market, with the Colts and their hometown tight end not close on a new contract.

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That was the response Ryan Grigson gave back in December when asked if Jack Doylewas a priority to re-sign in 2017.

And now that Doyle likely enters a new chapter of his career this week — his first experience as an unrestricted free agent — it’s probably safe to say that the cat is out of the bag when it comes to his potential on the field.

So whenever Doyle inks his new contract — and one would imagine the Colts hope he remains with his hometown team for the foreseeable future — his fantasy stock, like his bank account, will likely see a major rise.

Hop down to Frank Gore’s locker and one of the greatest running backs in NFL history lights up when hearing Jack Doyle’s name.

It’s fitting that one of Jack Doyle’s favorite sayings was said by one of Indiana’s greatest sports legends.

Scott Tolzien and Stephen Morris are the other quarterbacks on Indy’s roster

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But when he hit free agency, Tolzien said he wanted to sign with a team where he knew he could develop as a quarterback, regardless of his placement on the depth chart.

After that, Scott Tolzien looked like a quarterback that could give his team a chance to pull off the upset.

“Every new offense has its challenges when you’re learning it from the beginning,” Tolzien said recently of mastering the Colts’ system, his bulky binder tucked under his arm. “So the way to combat that is just to be diligent on it every day. You don’t want to get too far behind because they’re throwing a lot at us, but it’s our job to learn it.”

At 28, Tolzien, a Wisconsin product, already has five-plus years of NFL experience in some pretty potent offensive schemes.  nfl colts jersey After going undrafted, he was signed by the San Diego Chargers in 2011 before joining the San Francisco 49ers later that year.

Two years later, it was on to Green Bay to play for the Packers, where he learned under Aaron Rodgers and had the opportunity to play in six total games from 2013-15, completing 56-of-91 of his passes (61.5 percent) for 721 yards with one touchdown to five interceptions.

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Scott Tolzien and Stephen Morris are the other quarterbacks on Indy’s roster.

And after his first season as the team’s backup to Andrew Luck, Tolzien said he thinks he accomplished just that.

“It was a good year,” Tolzien said the day after the Colts’ 24-20, season-ending victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars. “It was a great learning year. I thought I got some great coaching, I thought we had a really good quarterback room. And the challenge is to keep progressing.”

That didn’t change when Tolzien got to Indianapolis. He said after spending hour upon hour, day upon day at Luck’s side, he would have no hesitancy putting Luck “in the ‘great’ category,” even throwing around the infamous “E” word oftentimes attached to the top quarterbacks in the league.

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In 2014, the Dallas Cowboys traded up in the fifth round of the NFL Draft to pick wide receiver Devin Street out of Pittsburgh.

Street had a decorated career for the Panthers, leaving after the 2013 season as the school’s all-time leader in receptions (202), and third all-time in receiving yards (2,901).

It’s that kind of playmaking ability that the Indianapolis Colts hope they can get out of Street after No. 2 wide receiver Donte Moncrief went down with an injured shoulder during Sunday’s loss to the Denver Broncos.Nike Colts #1 Pat McAfee Black Men's Stitched NFL Impact Limited Jersey

The Colts announced the signing of Street off the New England Patriots’ practice squad Wednesday morning.

Street certainly has the size (6 foot 3, 200 pounds) teams want at the wide receiver position, though he’s had limited experiences in his professional career thus far. He played in 31 career games with two starts for the Cowboys the past two seasons before the team released him during final roster cuts at the end of this preseason.

“You always have to be ready for that, especially in this business,” he said. “Injuries happen, guys get released, guys come and go, so you always have to be on your Ps and Qs because you don’t no when your number’s going to be called. But you better be ready if you really want to stay in this league.”

Pat McAfee is an athlete with a great right arm

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The Indianapolis Colts have named punter Pat McAfee as their local nominee for the NFL’s Salute to Service Award. This is the second consecutive year McAfee has been named the team’s nominee and in 2015, he was a national finalist. This award was started in 2012 by the NFL to recognize players for their extraordinary efforts to honor and serve U.S. service members and veterans. Every year, each of the 32 NFL teams nominates a player, coach or staff member to be considered for the national award.

Pat McAfee is an athlete with a great right arm. During Training Camp, it’s not far fetched to see McAfee throwing the ball around during practice. That skill allows the Colts to implement such a trick play. One interesting aspect of this play was having Donte Moncrief on the field as a gunner. This should have alerted the Steelers that something was up. This is a unique pre-snap look with Erik Swoope the only in-line body to the left of long snapper Matt Overton.

With McAfee, Barstool is adding a perspective from an ex-professional athlete, with no handcuffs and filter allowing ‘Pat to be Pat.’

Walking away from more than 5 million dollars is something McAfee knows seems crazy to many, but it was time for the former Pro Bowl punter to pursue a new endeavor.

“I will not be getting back in and playing football, unless this completely fails, which it has a chance to,” McAfee admits. “This has a chance to fall right on its face. But we’ll see what happens.

Hilton, meanwhile, received an overall rating of 87.3 from Pro Football Focus this season, a figure that ranks fifth in the NFL.

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But looking at the pure stats, Hilton, for the first time in his career, won the NFL’s receiving title by leading the league with 1,448 yards. In all, he had 91 receptions and six touchdowns, and his 28 receptions of 20-plus yards on the season were the most in the NFL.

In early January, the Colts did go out and sign young punter/kicker Devon Bell, a 2016 undrafted free agent who has punting experience and kickoff work from his collegiate days at Mississippi State. Having yet to play in an NFL regular season game, Bell spent the 2016 preseason with the Detroit Lions.

Hilton, who earned his third consecutive Pro Bowl selection in 2016, recorded his fourth straight 1,000-yard receiving season and finished with single-season career highs in receptions (91), receiving yards (1,448) and scrimmage yards (1,448).

He led the NFL in receiving yards, becoming the first Colt to do that since Reggie Wayne in 2007, and marking the eighth time in team history that a Colts played led the league in receiving yards (four times in Indianapolis, four times in Baltimore). Hilton also led the league with 16 25-plus-yard receptions, as he continued to establish himself as one of the top deep threats in the NFL.peyton manning colts jersey authentic

New GM Chris Ballard could spend a draft pick on a new punter/kickoff man. The Colts have a full cupboard of draft picks, outside of their seventh rounder (which they traded for former DL-Billy Winn in 2015). If the Colts earn a seventh-round compensatory pick later this offseason, which is a possibility, that could be used on a rookie punter.

Now there are more quarterback with this dimension and ability.

Colts offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski said this week that the few quarterbacks in the league with Luck’s playmaking abilities adds “another dimension” to the position.

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Last year the Atlanta Falcons had the same starting offensive line the entire season. No coincidence their offense carried them to the Super Bowl.
That word has been absent from Colts offensive lines for quite some time, well before the days Andrew Luck got under center.

Good news for line coach Joe Philbin: Besides Schwenke, all of the guys competing for the top 7-8 spots on the line started at least a game for him last season.

“You see a lot of quarterbacks, a lot more quarterbacks nowadays have that dimension and the ability to do that,” Chudzinski said. “In today’s NFL you almost have to with the pressure packages and the rushers that are in this league and you have to make quarterbacks step aside and be able to sit in the pocket and make plays and that’s where you see the real special ones excel. They can make plays by side stepping, not be effected by the rush as well as get out and make plays off time.”

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Because it sure looked like an August afternoon in Anderson, Indiana.

For virtually all of Monday night, Andrew Luck and T.Y. Hilton worked like they were playing pitch and catch during a 7-on-7 Training Camp practice at Anderson University.

Massive separation from Hilton and pinpoint accuracy from Luck led to one of the duo’s finest outings in five seasons together.

Kelly started all 16 games at center for the Colts in his rookie season in 2016, showing that he was more-than ready for the rigors of NFL duties after a decorated career at the University of Alabama. In fact, Kelly didn’t allow a single sack in his first NFL season, even playing through some notable bumps and bruises along the way.

He’s obviously one of the key young offensive pieces moving forward for the Colts and first-year general manager Chris Ballard.

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That’s the belief of NFL Media analyst Elliot Harrison, who each year releases his “All-Under-25 Team.” He recently came up with his All-Under-25 Team for this year — in which those listed must be 24 years or younger before the start of the first game of the 2017 season — and Kelly was his pick at center.Nike Colts #10 Donte Moncrief Royal Blue Team Color Men's Stitched NFL Elite Jersey

“I understand that sounds like an oversell. We are in a world of oversells. Everything is breaking news. Everything is incredible. Everything is the best of all time,” McAfee said. “But with Adam Vinatieri, you are talking about literally the greatest of all time.

“I believe he’s the most competitive person in the history of the world. Every single thing with him is a competition to him. And Indianapolis Colts jersey he handles it with class. He’s not the obnoxious competitive person. But every single kick to him is a chance to make his team better, but also to improve himself. Every single kick he wants to prove that he’s the best kicker ever.”

Colts special teams coordinator Tom McMahon has had an up-close-and-personal look at Vinatieri’s approach since 2012, and said the future Hall of Famer’s success is no mistake.

“With Adam Vinatieri, he lives in the moment,” McMahon said. “He’s not going to look at the records (until) later on in life; he’s not going to look at what he’s done in the past. He looks at that play, that moment, what he has to do, where he’s got to put his eyes, where he’s got to put his foot, and it’s that simple. And he makes it that simple, and he does it that way every single time. And those guys are the special guys in this league.”

Reconstruction of the offensive and defensive lines should be the Colts’ priorities

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The key for Hilton and the Colts’ offense now is to put together a second straight week of big plays.

The moment his name was announced with the 18th overall pick back in April, Ryan Kelly was penciled into an NFL starting lineup with more assurance than any other rookie.

If the Colts went with Lamp, as previously mentioned, he would become the team’s second straight offensive lineman selected in the first round, joining center Ryan Kelly, who was picked 18th overall in 2016 and went on to start all 16 games in a solid rookie season.

“Coming into a position that is very difficult to play as a rookie in this league and in a system where a lot is demanded out of him with a quarterback that is always pushing the envelope in terms of those things as well. I can’t say that enough, what a great job he has done. There are a lot of things that you want to Indianapolis Colts jersey china  clean up as a coach but if you look at the big picture, I think he has come in and done everything that we would ask him to do.”

Perhaps the best place for a guy like Lamp in Indy would be at right guard, where the team has quite a few candidates, as well as at right tackle, hoping to secure a starting job in 2017. One might believe Joe Haeg, who stood out as a rookie, starting 14 games at guard and tackle for the Colts in 2016, would be an early front runner for one of those two spots, while the other remains wide open.

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“Rebuilding the offensive and defensive lines has to be a priority for the Colts,” McShay wrote. “Edge rushers such as Takkarist McKinley or Charles Harris could make sense here, but Lamp is the best all-around offensive lineman in this draft. He played left tackle in college, but projects as a guard in the NFL. Flip on his tape against Alabama. This kid is for real.”

But come Sunday night, as he took a slant pass 63 yards to the end zone for the game-winning touchdown in the Indianapolis Colts’ 26-22 victory over the San Diego Chargers, Hilton certainly looked like the two-time Pro Bowler and No. 1 receiver fans have come to love over the years.

Hilton says he put last week’s game “on me,” knowing that for the next month or so, even with coverages more prevalent his way, plays must be made.

What the Colts are missing now in Moncrief is a guy that can use his 6-2 frame over the middle of the field, in the red zone on fade patterns and over the top of underneath coverage.

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“They look for me to make big plays, and I wasn’t doing that the first two games, and I told them, ‘I’m going to be the difference-maker today,’” Hilton said after the game. “I said earlier in the week, ‘I want to put it on me, put the game on me,’ and that’s what I did today.Indianapolis Colts Heart & Soul Pullover Hoodie Grey

Hilton’s first two games produced just 10 total catches for 120 yards and no scores. Worst yet, the Colts lost both weeks to the Detroit Lions and Denver Broncos, when they really could’ve used an extra spark or two from one of their top offensive threats throughout the game to get over the hump.

The key for Hilton and the Colts’ offense now is to put together a second straight week of big plays. The unit looked extremely sharp for the entire second half of the Lions game, but often fell flat the next week on the road against Denver.

Indianapolis opens divisional play next week against the Jacksonville Jaguars in London, and going into the game with a win and a 1-2 record certainly leaves a much better taste in the team’s mouth than 0-3 and all the gloom and doom that goes with it.

 

The consecutive number of wins the Jaguars have over the Colts

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The consecutive number of wins the Jaguars have over the Colts. Revenge should be on the minds of the Colts this week. Jacksonville has struggled mightily against the rest of the NFL lately. In their last 21 games, the Jaguars are 2-0 against the Colts and 2-17 versus the rest of the NFL.

I used yards per game and compared the colts vs the opponent and that didn’t quite tell the whole story. I looked how many carries we had too. If we had more carries we won if we didn’t we lost. The only two games that disproved my theory were against the Texans Week 6 and the titans week 7.

The Jaguars have beaten the Colts the last two times these teams have met. Those losses (one this past October and the other last December) were pivotal in the Colts missing the playoffs the past two years.

Even though Mathis will no longer be part of the playing family of the Colts, his impact and longevity is unparalleled.

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Of all the pillar Colts this franchise has had over the past 20 years, Mathis is the only one to have never donned another uniform in a game or practice.

“They gave me the opportunity of a lifetime to start,” Mathis said of the Colts selecting him in the fifth round of the 2003 NFL Draft, “and to end in the same place, in one place, that is something a whole lot of guys, a whole lot of greats are not able to say.NFL Indianapolis Colts Stitched Snapback Hats 014

“I appreciate it to the utmost that they have given me the opportunity to play 14 seasons in one place.”

Watching Mathis speak on Friday, it was clear this decision was not an easy one.

While Mathis’ family gets to see more of their father and husband, football has provided him a bevy of unforgettable moments.

And Jim Irsay confirmed the obvious: Robert Mathis will one day be inducted into the Colts Ring of Honor.

Friday is Robert Mathis’ day at the Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center.

Following the final practice of the week, Mathis speaks to the media. The answers aren’t long in quantity, but they come from the heart.

That’s Mathis. Quiet by definition, but plenty loud once third-down rolls around.

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The same quiet Mathis spoke on Friday. This message perked ears up though—Sunday will be the final game for the Colts’ all-time sack leader.

Joe Reitz retired. Jonotthan Harrison was not re-signed (Harrison has moved on to the Jets). Brian Schwenke was added to provide some depth/competition in the interior of the line.

Why the lack of activity in the offensive trenches?

It’s because Ballard has been pleasantly surprised by what the tape has shown him.

Ballard believes the future is bright involving the current offensive line personnel.

“The O-line is very young, but I think it has a chance to really grow,” Ballard says. “It’s been fun to watch that group work together.

“They are all in the building working together. That’s what you want. It’s never about one guy. I think that’s part of the misconception on the O-line. That it’s about one guy. It’s about those five guys playing together. They’ve all been in town, all their workouts they are doing them together. And that’s been fun to see.”

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The Colts don’t have any legitimate in-house candidates that have proved they’re ready to take replace Mathis or Cole at linebacker. Those players would have garnered more snaps last season if that were the case. Akeem Ayers is the most experienced linebacker returning for the Colts, and he only had two sacks last season.

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These teams last played in 2015, when the Jets beat the Colts, 20-7, on Monday Night Football in Indianapolis. The Jets finished 10-6 last year, in coach Todd Bowles’ debut season. Things have unfolded quite differently in 2016.

“There were no other options. It was Chuck Pagano,” Ballard said. “Chuck Pagano is a good football coach in the National Football League. Three 11-5 seasons, went to the AFC Championship Game, had two 8-8s (seasons) back-to-back, but he has won 49 games. We need to keep our eye on how hard it is to win in this league. It is hard to win and he has won 49 games in the National Football League. It was Chuck Pagano and his staff and we are rolling.”   cheap Indianapolis Colts jerseys

The Colts led 13-0 in the second quarter after two field goals by Adam Vinatieri jerseys and a touchdown catch by Jack Doyle jersey. Osweiler and Houston’s offense struggled to get going early and Osweiler had negative-9 yards passing in the first quarter. The Texans cut it to 13-3 before halftime on Novak’s 27-yard field goal.

Want to understand a secret? Most sports bettors feel as if NFL football spreads are predictors of outcomes. For instance, that they see that the New England Patriots jerseys are favored by 14 in the Indianapolis Colts jerseys, they believe this is why the Patriots should win by 10.

Tom McMahon is in his fourth year as Pagano’s special teams coach and fifth overall as a lead NFL special teams coach (he spent 2012 in the role for the Chiefs). Kicker Adam Vinatieri jersey, a potential Hall of Famer, is still rolling strong at 43 years old — he’s converted 43 straight field goals. Punter Pat McAfee has also impressed Chiefs special teams coach Dave Toub with his ability to manipulate onside kicks. “He’s a magician with the ball,” Toub said. “They’ve kicked a number of surprise onside kicks over the years successfully so we have our work cut out for us. We’re going to have to have a plan for what he does.” McAfee is also a good punter. The Colts’ units rank around the middle of the pack when it comes to covering and returning kicks and punts.

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Wins. This Raider team already has as many wins as any complete season since the meltdown began. This is also a team with regard to in contention at the conclusion of November. They may ready for Prime Time quite yet, but this is really a team that is turning the space.

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Western decorations are simple to make or decide to buy. Again, thrift stores can be perfect places come across boot-shaped vases, cowboy hats and shirts, or other western items for the decor. For music you can play country-western CDs or hire a rustic trio or band.

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The graphics and numbers are not sewn on but are screen printed instead. These jerseys constitute the majority of those sold and welcomed in NFL stadiums and sports bars coast to region. They’re close enough to the real deal to look respectable but for the greater budget-minded big fan. The NFL takes counterfeit jersey sellers really seriously so don’t confuse inexpensive NFL jerseys with outright fakes. There is no doubt yow will discover a jersey for near to nothing it’s likely it’s been created where official NFL jerseys aren’t actually made.

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Colts won’t let offensive woes hinder playoff push

Indianapolis Colts jerseys head coach Chuck Pagano said all the right things on Wednesday afternoon. Charlie Whitehurst, the third-string quarterback who might be playing in the biggest game of the Colts’ season did the same. It felt as if they were following the typical script that embattled teams stick to when their odds of success become bleaker by the minute. We still like our chances, the Colts seemed to be saying. We still believe this can end well.

The problem the Colts have is that it’s increasingly harder to buy into such thinking. This team was in disarray when this season kicked off so it’s fitting that chaos surrounds it as the playoff race winds down. The Colts are about to play a huge AFC South game against the Houston Texans this week that will be critical to determining which of those squads wins the division. Indianapolis will go into that contest with a quarterback situation bordering on disastrous.

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Pagano said Luck’s lacerated kidney — the same injury that has sidelined the quarterback for six games — hasn’t healed enough to allow the Colts star to play this week. Second-string quarterback Matt Hasselbeck is nursing a rib and neck injury that might limit him as well. That left Whitehurst preparing on Wednesday as if he could be Sunday’s starter.

“We know what we have to do,” said Colts running back Frank Gore. “We have to rally together and play as one. We have to make plays when they’re there. Everybody has to go out there and get the job done.”

The Colts are doing what every team does in these situations. They’re convincing themselves that circumstances really aren’t as bad as they appear. They remember what life was like when they opened the season with an 0-2 record. Indianapolis bounced back from that disappointing start because it possessed the pride that came with winning two consecutive AFC South titles and making three straight playoff appearances.

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This situation, however, will require far more than simple mental toughness. The Colts have been careening down a perilous path for months, one that is all the more surprising because they were a trendy pick to reach this year’s Super Bowl. They haven’t been able to protect Luck. They haven’t been able to quash rumors about a tumultuous relationship between Pagano and general manager Ryan Grigson (one that may ultimately end with at least Pagano losing his job). Worst of all, they haven’t been able to rise up at a time when they need to be thriving.

The Colts are currently tied with Houston for first place in the AFC South — both possess 6-7 records — but Indianapolis has lost two straight by a combined score of 96-26. The Colts’ most recent defeat was a 51-16 laugher at Jacksonville, which said plenty about how quickly things are changing in arguably the worst division in football. The Colts had won 15 straight games against AFC South opponents. Now, with Houston coming to town this week and Tennessee still on the schedule, it looks like all these teams are eager to exact their own respective pound of flesh.

The meeting with Houston became all the more interesting when Pagano announced that Luck won’t play. The most the Pro Bowl quarterback could do on Wednesday was participate in individual drills while Hasselbeck needed a day off before his scheduled return to practice on Thursday.

“I feel very fortunate that we’ve got Matt Hasselbeck,” Pagano said. “We need to keep him healthy. Need to keep him upright. Got to protect him, do a better job of that. It wasn’t just a couple weeks ago (that the headlines were) ‘4-0 at 40′ or ’40 and 4-0’ (a reference to the 40-year-old Matt Hasselbeck winning his first four starts), so he’s won games. He can play at a winning level, and he will play again at a winning level. He’s just a little banged up right now.”

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Indianapolis Colts Nike Game JerseyIt is true to say that Hasselbeck did a masterful job of leading the Colts in an emergency situation. It’s also accurate to note that his play was declining even before his own health became an issue. The Colts simply have too many flaws, particularly within their offensive line and defense, to keep winning consistently. The problems at quarterback are reaching a point where it’s hard to see how they stay alive in this playoff race.

Whitehurst — whom the Colts claimed off waivers on Nov. 12 — took all the practice reps with the first team on Wednesday. The upside for him is that he’s been trustworthy enough as a backup that he’s lasted 10 seasons in the league and that Luck and Hasselbeck have been getting him up to speed.

“How I deal with it is you just do it,” said Whitehurst, who has completed 195 career passes during a career that includes stints in San Diego, Seattle and Tennessee. “You don’t have a choice. If you go out there and you play well and you win, then you were part of something pretty cool. So, that’s how I approach it.”

If there is good news in this, the Colts are facing a Texans team that has never won in Indianapolis. Even when Indianapolis finished 2-14 in 2011, one of those victories came against a Houston squad that won the AFC South that year. That’s 13 straight losses the Texans have endured in this town. To make matters worse for Houston, they have their own quarterback issues: Backup T.J. Yates will be filling in for injured starter Brian Hoyer.

Normally, that would be reason enough to worry about Houston’s chances. The Texans did lose a critical game in Buffalo two weeks ago and their offense has struggled without a consistent running game. They’re the epitome of a team trying to grind out wins any way possible. That approach has been good enough to bring them back from a 2-5 start.

Of course, Yates has helped the Texans win two games this season. Houston also has a defense led by Pro Bowl defensive end J.J. Watt jersey. The odds of Whitehurst playing against that unit and playing well aren’t encouraging. If anything, that scenario might lead to a repeat of what happened in Jacksonville.

This is where the Colts find themselves in a season that has left many people shaking their heads at the state of this franchise. This was once a team that was brimming with potential, as they had the dual blessings of young talent and weak competition within their division. Indianapolis had never missed the postseason during Luck’s time in the NFL. In fact, a loss to New England in last year’s AFC title game left many people believing this would be the year the Colts returned to the Super Bowl.

That feels like premature thinking today. The Colts were good enough to excite us but not strong enough to overcome the types of problems that can derail most teams. Their flaws and their misfortune have plagued them throughout most of this season. On Sunday, with a shot at controlling their own destiny, those two factors may be enough to end whatever hope they have left.

A would-be comeback sputtered down the stretch as the Indianapolis Colts jerseys fell 30-27 to the previously winless Jacksonville Jaguars in London.

The come-from-behind victory could have been Andrew Luck’s third of the season. Instead, his team fell to 1-3, losing two of those contests by fewer than five points.

“We gotta be more professional as players, in a sense, and understand our role, our job and do our job,” Luck said, via the Indy Star.

He added: “A lot of almosts, and almosts are never good enough in this league. I’m tired of almost. I want to win. The Colts are a winning culture. We expect wins. And it just doesn’t happen if you trot out on the field. It starts at practice, it starts in the work hours, and I think we can go back, improve and make that happen.”

It’s difficult to read Luck’s frustrated words and not consider it an indictment of the coaching staff — a Chuck Pagano-led band that continues to find the ire of the fan base. In London, the Colts were again a sloppy, mistake-prone group.

Owner Jim Irsay’s kumbaya session with Pagano and GM Ryan Grigson this offseason, in which he gave each a contract extension, now seems lost in the wilderness of ages past.

The Colts are a flawed team with a talent-poor roster that blows plays and lacks consistency on both sides of the ball.

As more losses like Sunday pile up, Irsay might have no choice but to make changes. Otherwise, he risks squandering Luck’s prime wallowing in almosts.

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