INDIANAPOLIS – We are inching closer and closer to the 2021 NFL football season.
It’s time to pick back up our ‘burning questions’ series on 1075TheFan.com.
Here are our burning questions on the offensive line heading into the 2021 Training Camp:
1. When Will Eric Fisher Be Ready To Go?
No other injury question comes close to Fisher’s, as the Colts enter training camp.
It was always a big storyline and that took on even more emphasis when the 2021 schedule for the Colts provided quite the gauntlet.
Back in the spring, the Colts had some confidence in where Fisher was at with his Achilles rehab.
Does that mean he could suit up in September?
This question won’t have a clear answer until Fisher ramps up the physical activity/gets some practice reps this August.
Until Fisher is deemed ready, the Colts are expected to turn to Sam Tevi at left tackle. Tevi has 14 career starts at left tackle.
Game plan wise, how the Colts choose to protect without Fisher will be an interesting storyline to watch.
STAT TO NOTE: Since 2019, the Kansas City Chiefs are 27-1 with Eric Fisher in the lineup at left tackle. They are 4-4 without him playing.
2. How Improved Is The Offensive Line Depth?
It was, arguably, the most important item for Chris Ballard to address this offseason.
Ballard blamed himself for not giving the Indy coaching staff more depth along the offensive line last year.
While the Anthony Castonzo retirement/replacement debate got all the attention this offseason, Ballard also made sure to make some depth additions to the O-line.
In doing so, the Colts have the potential for 6th, 7th and 8th offensive linemen that have been full-time starters at some points in their respective NFL careers.
On paper, this should be an improvement for the Colts.
Compared to most offensive lines, the Colts have recently had really good health for that position group.
That can’t be taken for granted.
STAT TO NOTE: In looking at the Colts backup offensive line in 2021, they have six players who have combined to start 115 career games.
3. Will This Unit Continue To Be A Strength?
This question is now being asked with Anthony Castonzo no longer at left tackle.
Since Chris Ballard’s emphasis on the offensive line took off in roster building starting in 2018, the offensive line of the Colts has been a strength.
It needs to remain that, even with a more mobile quarterback under center.
Carson Wentz was pressured, and hit, a good amount last season.
The Colts are firm believers that they will provide better protection for Wentz, to go along with a consistent run game.
With how this team is built, the offensive line must be a strength, even with Castonzo no longer here.
If healthy, Eric Fisher’s level of play should be right up there with Castonzo.
STAT TO NOTE: Right guard Mark Glowinski was the only Colts offensive player to play every single snap last year (1,092).