INDIANAPOLIS – In some parts of the country, they say football is religion.
Well, Sheldon Day made sure to find ways for both on Sundays in the fall while growing up in Indianapolis.
“Sundays were Colts days,” Day, the eastside of Indianapolis native, now says looking back on his childhood once September arrived.
“Every Sunday after church we would try to rush home and beat the church traffic to make sure that we got home to watch the Colts games. It was really big in my household.”
Come the fall of 2020, Day will be busy on Sunday mornings getting ready to play for that team he used to watch.
“Just getting the opportunity to go put on the Horseshoe and play for the hometown team, it’s something special, so I am looking forward to it,” the 25-year-old Day now says. “It’s going to be an exciting time and hopefully we can bring a Super Bowl to Indy.”
Day was on the doorstep of winning a Super Bowl back in February.
When starting nose tackle D.J. Jones went down in December 2019, the 49ers turned to Day to start alongside DeForest Buckner, Nick Bosa and Arik Armstead.
While the personnel, besides Buckner, will look a lot different in Indianapolis, Day does see similarities in the style of both defensive fronts.
“In San Francisco we played in an attacking front, so something similar to what the Colts play,” the Warren Central High School and University of Notre Dame product says. “It’s about penetrating, playing fast, playing physical and flying to the ball. So (there) are a lot of similarities when you look at us both on film. Just watching the Colts on film, energy always jumps off the tape. Guys are running to the ball, they are having fun and they are playing as a unit. Getting a chance to be a part of something like this is going to special.”
Day’s role with the Colts isn’t defined just yet, but at the very least he figures to provide needed depth at defensive tackle—a position that under performed for Indianapolis last season.
It’s a bit fitting that Day considers his favorite Colt from the 2000s to be Gray Brackett.
“GB was underrated, an undersized linebacker and he really held that unit together,” Day says. “He was a special player for sure.”
At 6-1 and 294 pounds, Day is a bit undersized and definitely does not have a prototypical defensive tackle body.
But he was good enough to earn an important role on the best defensive line in the NFL.
And now he is back in Indy, where he’s previously returned to in the offseason to host a youth sports camp and take 4th through 6th graders up to Notre Dame for a life skills/sports mix camp.
Those kids will now get a chance to watch Day play for their hometown team, like he did growing up.