The Indianapolis Colts will begin their training camp sometime late next month; the exact start date will be announced soon.
For Colts fans, the announcement will let them know exactly how long they must wait before they can get their first glimpse at the team, their new head coach, and of course, their shiny new rookie quarterback.
With nothing but time between now and the start of training camp, Colts fans have nothing to do but ponder the questions that will surround this team. Let’s take a look at some of those questions.
Who Will Take The Most 1st-Team Snaps at QB?
The biggest, and most obvious question, is who will be taking the most 1st-team snaps under center when training camp begins in Grand Park, Gardner Minshew or Anthony Richardson? Minshew was brought in to buy the Colts time to develop a rookie quarterback, and his familiarity with Shane Steichen’s offense should give him the leg up at the start of camp. Don’t be surprised, however, if Richardson begins to take over as time goes on. The Colts seem to be leaning towards trying to get him on the field in Week 1, and his supreme athleticism could cover for any growing pains he undergoes.
What Is The Status of LB Shaquille Leonard?
Shaquille Leonard, the All-Pro linebacker who only played in 3 game last season due to various injuries, did not participate in OTA’s as he recovered from back surgery. The Colts have given no timetable for Leonard’s return, though the linebacker has commented that he feels much better now than at any point last season. While Zaire Franklin played well in his absence, setting a franchise record for tackles in a season, the Colts desperately need Leonard to be able to return to form, and bring his turnover machine ways back to the Colts defense. Until he is a full participant in practice, questions and concerns will continue to linger.
What Will The Colts Lineup at CB Be?
Earlier in June, the Colts were rocked by news that 4th-year CB Isaiah Rodgers, who was primed to compete for a starting role on the defense, was under investigation for gambling on NFL games, including games that included the Colts. While there has been no recent update on the investigation, Rodgers did tweet out an apology that seemingly admitted to the gambling. His status for the 2023 season is doubtful at best, and it remains to be seen if he ever takes another snap in a Colts uniform. The team also traded former All-Pro Stephon Gilmore to the Cowboys during the offseason, leaving them a fairly young and unproven CB room. Kenny Moore is still there, though he is coming off of a down year. The team also drafted 3 CBs in April, including 2nd-round local product Julius Brents. Brents figures to compete for a starting spot; beyond him, there are a bunch of question marks.
What Will The Offensive Line Look Like?
The Colts once vaunted offensive line is coming off of its worst season since the team drafted Quenton Nelson in 2018. The team has brought in a new offensive line coach in Tony Sparano Jr to try and right the ship. Bernhard Raimann seems to have taken hold of the left tackle position, answering one of the questions that plagued the team last year. However, right guard is still a concern, as is the play of center Ryan Kelly and right tackle Braden Smith. Both struggled mightily last season, and will be looking to return to their standard of play next year. The presence of Nelson, who continues to remain an anchor on the offensive line, should allow the unit to bounce back.
There are plenty of other concerns surrounding the team as they begin to gear up for training camp. Wide receiver continues to be a position that might use some help; the defensive line still doesn’t have a dominant edge rusher, and the Jonathan Taylor contract situation, while not an immediate concern, is something to keep an eye on. All of these will continue to linger until the Colts put on the pads in late July, and really begin the process of preparing for the 2023-24 NFL season.
During Tuesday’s edition of The Ride With JMV, John spoke to voice of the Colts Matt Taylor! John and Matt talked about the announcement for training camp dates, what activities the fans can expect to see at training camp, and more! Check out that conversation and other below, and tune into The Ride With JMV from 3-6pm on 93.5/107.5 The Fan!
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