LB Wesly Mallard
The Colts might be intrigued by the Patriots' release this week of the 6'1, 230-pound linebacker. He established a good reputation as a special teams player with the Giants for three years before a torn ACL cut his season short last year. A walk-on at the University of Oregon and sixth-round draft pick, he signed with New England during the offseason and made their 53-man roster, playing in two games this year. After being released at the end of September, to make room for some roster moves required due to injuries at other positions, they re-signed him on October 12th for linebacker and special teams depth against the Broncos. But then they waived him on the 19th to make another roster move.
While listed as an outside linebacker, Mallard also saw some time at middle linebacker during the preseason. In the Patriots last preseason game, he was credited with five tackles (including his special teams work) and a sack. During his first two seasons with the Giants, he was credited with 25 tackles.
"Speed is a big part of my game," Mallard told Tom King of the Nashua Telegraph back in August. "You can never have enough speed. . . . (Open-field tackling) is tougher than it looks, because you have to be able to recognize who's going to block you, beat that guy and then go down and make a one-on-one tackle, which is one of the hardest things to do."
Patriots head coach Bill Belichick said, "He's a pretty instinctive special teams player."
His familiarity with the New England linebacker schemes could be useful information as the Colts prepare for a November 7th trip to Foxboro. Add Dexter Reid's knowledge of the Patriots' secondary as well as both of their involvement in the Patriots special teams and you have some pretty good pregame intelligence.
QB Jeff Smoker
The Colts brought Smoker in for a workout earlier this season but didn't make an offer to him. Ironically, the Colts helped him gain employment this week after Marc Bulger was sidelined with a shoulder injury by David Thornton's hit. Smoker was signed to the Rams' practice squad as a result.
WR Robert Redd
Robert Redd was re-signed by Philadelphia to their practice squad this week. Redd has played in NFL Europe and in the Arena Football League, where he played both WR and DB. He's listed at both positions with the Eagles but is primarily considered to be a cornerback and special teams player. He was in the Colts' 2003 training camp out of Bowling Green as a wide receiver but didn't make the final roster.