INDIANAPOLIS – It’s not offense vs. defense sessions, but the Colts are still on the field this week under the tutelage of their coaching staff.
That will continue on Thursday, when the media gets their first in-person exposure to the 2021 Colts.
What did we learn from the Colts on Wednesday?
- Rocking a new No. 1 jersey, Parris Campbell is taking part in drills right now after being cleared last week. “100 percent,” is how Campbell described himself on Wednesday. Campbell’s second NFL season ended in Week Two after hearing a ‘pop’ in his left knee that led to an injured PCL and MCL. In changing from No. 15 to No. 1, Campbell wanted a fresh start, something new and he thinks that number ‘looks fast on the field.’ As you’d expect, Campbell is frustrated with the injury riddled two seasons he’s had in the NFL. How banged up has Campbell been in the NFL? Since September of his rookie season, he’s caught balls in just 3 total games. In that same span, the Colts have played 28 games. Campbell said a big key for him going into Year 3 is not thinking about the injuries. He stressed the importance in staying away from that line of thinking so he’s not playing timid or nervous.
- In true Braden Smith fashion, the reserved right tackle had the perfect answer to describe the contract extension that is coming his way soon. Smith is leaving that up to his agent. “That’s what he gets paid to do. And I get paid to play football,” the big right tackle said. “Smith will get a very nice pay day after proving to be an extremely solid right tackle. Look for him and Darius Leonard to get those extensions this offseason, with the possibility of Nyheim Hines, although playing running back will hinder that.
- Bobby Okereke met the media on Wednesday as his role continues to ascend with the loss of Anthony Walker. Like Darius Leonard, Walker was an important mentor to Okereke. It will be Okereke now having the complete MIKE linebacker duties, with Leonard at the WILL. Remember, Okereke was actually out-snapping Walker late in the year, but now he’s the 17-game starter there, too. Okereke says he is looking for more big plays in Year Three. His understanding of the defense more will be key in that, Okereke added.
- It was interesting for Kenny Moore to note that he thinks part of the secondary’s improvement in 2021 is needed in the bonding department, on and off the field. Moore feels like the chemistry within the group needs to improve. The corners will be led by a new position coach in James Rowe, who has history with Moore at Valdosta State. Continuity is there for this group in ’21, with the Colts returning their top 6 defensive backs in playing time from last year. Moore also pointed out that the secondary needs to step up in some of the bigger games.
- Again, Thursday will be the first time the media has observed the 2021 Colts on the practice field. We will get another look at them next week before they take their 2-month break until training camp.