Colts Practice Squad Projections

Who will the Colts sign to their practice squad? Ed Thompson provides his list of the eight players he would sign if picking strictly from the eligible players the Colts released.

While I'm listing eight players in my picks below, remember that it's likely that the Colts will pull in some players from the huge pool of roughly 700 players that were released yesterday. I've listed my picks in the priority order that I think Indianapolis should use, which means that if they've spotted better talent elsewhere, the bottom few selections below would be the ones that I'd be most willing to see them part with if they don't use all eight spots on their own players.

Here's my selections of who the team should sign from the players they released who have practice squad eligibility:



1.  WR Craphonso Thorpe: The Colts need to make Thorpe a priority so they have some added depth at the returns specialist position. It's second-year cornerback T.J. Rushing's position and Kenton Keith could step in capably on kickoff returns. But Thorpe could be a threat on kickoffs and punts if Rushing got banged-up while handling what is a very physically demanding and dangerous job.

2.  RB Clifton Dawson: With Dorsey possibly heading to the injured reserve list and not eligible for practice squad duty anyway, Dawson (or at least a running back from another team's cuts) has to be a priority. With only three running backs on the active roster, the team must have one waiting in the wings.

3.  QB Josh Betts: He showed some progress and got some more reps during preseason this year. I like his focus and the fire in his belly. He knows the offense better and is capable of growing into the No. 2 role if the Colts give him more reps during practice this year.

4.  TE Gijon Robinson: Well-rounded and developing, Robinson appears to be a good fit for Indy's offense, especially as a short-yardage and goal-line tight end. The team has just three true tight ends on the roster (although they could call long-snapper Justin Snow to duty in a pinch), so expect them to use one spot on the tight end position.

5.  CB Tanard Davis: An on-again, off-again practice squad player last year, Davis is a likely finalist this year as he showed some nice progress since last year's camp. He can also provide some depth as a returns specialist if need be.

6.  LB Brandon Archer: If Gary Brackett would get injured and Rob Morris slides over to MLB, I'd want Archer promoted from the practice squad as his backup. Or if any of the linebackers get dinged on special teams, Archer's a very capable and smart performer.

7.  S Scott Ware: With the way the Colts' safeties got banged up last year, I have to believe the team will want to have one in reserve on the practice squad. Ware can contribute on special teams and is a hitter as a safety.

8.  WR Trent SheltonBased purely on talent, I'd rate Shelton higher on this list. But based on position needs, since the Colts are so stacked at WR, Shelton could end up being a low priority for the practice squad.

Also eligible for practice squad duty: CB Duane Coleman, TE Matt Farbotko, TE Jonny Harline, OL Joe Lobdell, DT Ramel Meekins, CB Antonio Perkins, OL Sam Wilder, LB Victor Worsley.


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