Full Training Camp Roster Breakdown for the Indianapolis Colts
The Colts will enter the 2013 season with an improved roster, more familiarity among teammates and coaches and high, self-imposed expectations.
While fans and members of the organization expect the team to improve upon its play from last season, many members of the media expect a regression from the 11 wins the Colts earned in 2013.
On the surface this may seem irresponsible, considering that the Colts are noticeably more talented at just about every position; however, the reality is that the 2012 Colts were incredibly lucky, pulling out seven fourth quarter comebacks and finishing the season with a negative point differential.
Going into the 2013 season, the Colts still have significant questions, despite their improvement. The defense is the main concern, specifically the lack of pass rush and effect that may have on an unproven secondary. The offense seems to be a bit more stable, but the offensive line is still a looming question mark a season after allowing the highest pressure per dropback in the league, according to Pro Football Focus (subscription required).
Of course, positive developments exist as well. The Colts' new offense under Pep Hamilton should be much more efficient. The offensive line has been upgraded, even if the end result of those upgrades is still in question. The Colts' defense has gotten major improvements on the defensive line and secondary.
With the improvements, the Colts now go into what is almost always a highly-anticipated time: training camp. So, as we look ahead, what can we expect from each player on the 90-man roster? Who makes the cut, and who sees a bigger role this season? Who's getting demoted, or possibly even released? Who should you be watching for during the three weeks of camp?
All stats provided courtesy of Pro Football Focus, unless otherwise indicated.
Andrew Luck (No. 12)
Luck carried the Colts to the playoffs last season and will likely be asked to do the same in 2013. While he won't attempt 627 attempts again, he'll be put in position to be much more efficient in Pep Hamilton's offense. Luck has already showed a tremendous ability to command an offense, create big plays and succeed under pressure. In 2013, he'll be looking to improve his accuracy and quick decision making. Regardless, nothing but a catastrophic injury will take the starting job away from him.
Matt Hasselbeck (No. 8)
The 14-year veteran arrives in Indianapolis as the team's second-oldest player, only trailing 40-year-old Adam Vinatieri. Hasselbeck may not be able to move and throw the way he did during his Pro-Bowl years in Seattle, but he has a wealth of experience and knowledge that will be invaluable for Luck's development. The real value in a backup quarterback isn't his play on the field, but what he offers the team on the sidelines. Hasselbeck won't be able to fill in for more than a game or so if needed, but the Colts and their fans are praying that won't be necessary.
Chandler Harnish (No. 5)
Harnish may make the final roster in his sophomore season, but more likely is that Harnish is cut and put on the practice squad. The Colts are trying to groom Harnish into a backup quarterback of the future, but they may not have room on the final roster for the 2012 Mr. Irrelevant.
Ahmad Bradshaw (No. 44)
Bradshaw's signing in free agency is the most high-profile free agency signing the Colts' have had in ages, even if it won't have the impact that other signings this year will. Bradshaw should be the starter in a crowded backfield, as his natural abilities rise far above those of any other back on the Colts roster. The only concern with Bradshaw is his recurring injury problems. The six-year back out of Marshall is currently recovering from offseason surgery on his foot, which kept him from participating in OTAs.
Vick Ballard (No. 33)
The Colts' 2012 fifth-round draft pick was a pleasant surprise when he took over for an injured Donald Brown last season. Ballard is a simple, but effective back, who uses decent strength and vision to gain whatever the offensive line gets him. While he doesn't have the speed to outrun anybody on the edge, he always pushes forward and is a good grind-it-out back between the tackles. Ballard should split carries with Bradshaw in 2013.
Donald Brown (No. 31)
Colts' coaches continue to say good things about Brown as he heads into his fifth year in Indianapolis. Some fans despise Brown for seemingly illogical reasons, but he should make the roster and be the third back in the Colts' three-man rotation. While Ballard and Bradshaw will get the majority of the carries, the Colts want to use three backs in 2013 and Brown should get a good 50-100 carries.
Delone Carter (No. 34)
One back who should definitely be concerned with his current standing is third-year back Delone Carter. Carter hasn't shown much outside of being a passable short-yardage back. Of course, that doesn't mean he won't make the final roster, but it will be dependent on how many backs the Colts keep (they kept four last year) and how important they consider Carter's short-yardage abilities to be.
Kerwynn Williams (No. 37)
If there's one unknown in this group, it's Williams. He has the potential to be a Darren Sproles-type weapon in the right offense, but it's only potential at this point. He'll make the final roster if he can contribute on special teams, but his effect on the offense will be limited in his rookie year.
Stanley Havili (No. 39)
Havili was brought in to play fullback in 2013, and he should be the starting fullback going into camp. If the Colts wish to use a true fullback in Pep Hamilton's offense (which traditionally, it has), Havili seems the most likely candidate.
Dan Moore (No. 48)
The other possible option for fullback is Dan Moore, an undrafted rookie out of the University of Montana. Moore was used taking the ball out of the backfield at Montana, and could be a more flexible option who can play both fullback and halfback. But, to make the roster, he'll have to beat out Havili.
Davin Meggett (No. 42)
The Colts signed Meggett to their practice squad last December after the Texans released him from their practice squad, where he'd been all season. Meggett will just be a camp body for the Colts this season.
Reggie Wayne (No. 87)
The 33-year-old receiver showed that he's still got everything he needs to be successful last season. Wayne was Pro Football Focus' third best receiver in 2012, and was the Colts' most dependable offensive weapon throughout the season. While Wayne struggled in the end zone, most of the struggles were because of Luck and the offense's struggles in general, not a fault of Wayne. With a more efficient offense, that hopefully uses Wayne in the slot as much as Arians' did, the grizzled vet should see high numbers once again this season.
Darrius Heyward-Bey (No. 81)
The former seventh-overall draft pick struggled for the past four years in Oakland, although the revolving door at both quarterback and head coach definitely had a negative effect on his development. Heyward-Bey certainly has the size (6'2" and 210 pounds) and speed (4.3 40 yard dash as a rookie), but his route running and occasional drops have hampered his production thus far.
T.Y. Hilton (No. 13)
The Colts' most promising big-play weapon burst onto the scene as a rookie with a yards-per-reception of 17.2, the 10th highest mark in Colts' history. Hilton struggled with drops and inconsistent route running in 2012, but he showed a strong connection with Andrew Luck that led to one of the best rookie wide receiver seasons since 2000. He should continue to be a key part of the Colts' downfield attack in 2013.
LaVon Brazill (No. 15)
Recent news of Brazill's four-game suspension due to a substance abuse violation has certainly put a damper on his development. Brazill was lined up to be the Colts' fourth wide receiver this year, and one of the best long-term depth options. Brazill shouldn't be cut over this, but he will need to have a strong training camp to earn back the trust of the coaches.
Nathan Palmer (No. 10)
Palmer made it onto the field for several plays last season, but was unable to make any real impact, dropping the ball on his one chance to score against the Packers. However, the Colts like Palmer, and he has the inside track on filling Brazill's spot while he is suspended.
Griff Whalen (No. 17)
Colts fans fell in love with Whalen last year when he showed off a chemistry with Luck leftover from their relationship at Stanford. Whalen, despite having limited physical traits, has good instincts finding soft spots in coverage, and could develop into a solid slot receiver. Unfortunately, a foot injury in preseason kept him on injured reserve, and he comes into his sophomore season with no real NFL experience. Fortunately, his previous experience in Pep Hamilton's offense should give him an edge going into training camp.
Jeremy Kelley (No. 84)
The Colts' lack of size was a severe deficiency last season, and one possible fix for that was the signing of former CFL receiver Jeremy Kelley. Kelley is 6'6", 235 pounds, easily the biggest receiver on the Colts roster. He hasn't shown much in OTAs, so he'll need to have a strong training camp to earn a roster spot.
Jabin Sambrano (No. 16)
Indianapolis signed Sambrano as an undrafted free agent last season, but cut him a couple weeks into the regular season. Sambrano was eventually picked up by the Buccaneers and put on the practice squad, and he was offered a future contract by the Colts in January. Sambrano has some history with the Colts, but didn't impress last year and is currently behind Whalen and Palmer for the final spot on the 53-man roster.
Rodrick Rumble (No. 11)
Rumble is another one of the Colts' bigger options at 6'2", 207 pounds. Rumble graduated from Idaho State this past year as the all-time leader in receptions and yards. He should simply be a camp body, but will be aiming for a roster spot.
Lanear Sampson (No. 14)
Like Rumble, Sampson was signed by the Colts as an undrafted free agent and will be battling for one of the final spots on the Colts' 53-man roster. Sampson is an explosive player with potential to be a solid deep threat, but he's a long shot to make the roster.
Dwayne Allen (No. 83)
The Colts' 2012 third-round draft pick was one of the NFL's best rookies last year, excelling in both run and pass blocking while being a decent option as a receiver. Allen is one of the best all-around tight ends in the game already, and he's only 23. He should be a long-term stud for Indianapolis and heads into 2013 as the Colts' best option to start at tight end.
Coby Fleener (No. 80)
Andrew Luck's former Stanford teammate struggled in 2012 after suffering through a concussion and shoulder injury. Fleener also was under-used in Bruce Arians' offense and should have a bigger role in Pep Hamilton's tight end-heavy and familiar offense.
Justice Cunningham (No. 86)
The former South Carolina Gamecock was drafted with the final pick of the 2013 draft by the Colts and is lined up to compete for the third tight-end spot. Cunningham has great blocking skills, although his receiving abilities are under-developed. He should be a fantastic option as a third tight end in heavy sets at the very least.
Weslye Saunders (No. 85)
The Colts signed Saunders last October after he was cut by the Steelers. Pittsburgh signed Saunders as an UDFA in 2011, but cut him midway through the 2012 season. Saunders was a decent blocker last season for Indianapolis, but wasn't much of a receiving threat. He'll compete with Cunningham and Dominique Jones to be the third tight end.
Dominique Jones (No. 46)
Jones bounced on and off the Colts' roster and practice squad last season, but is a flexible option that can play tight end, H-back and fullback if necessary. The Colts kept Saunders over him during the second half of 2012, so it would seem that he has an uphill battle ahead of him.
Anthony Castonzo (No. 74)
The Colts first-round draft pick in 2011 has proven to be a solid pick after two years in the league. Castonzo has been a very good run blocker, better than imagined, and his pass protection improved dramatically over the second half of 2012. Castonzo was the Colts' best option at left tackle in 2011, and he continues to be as the Colts move forward.
Gosder Cherilus (No. 78)
The Colts desperately needed to upgrade the offensive line as they came off of a season in which they had one of the worst offensive lines in the league. Andrew Luck was pressured on a league-leading 268 snaps, and the offense's efficiency suffered because of it. Enter Gosder Cherilus, a pass-blocking expert of a right tackle who was PFF's highest rated pass-protector at right tackle last season.
Jeff Linkenbach (No. 72)
Linkenbach was thought to be a decent backup at tackle heading into last season, but he played most of his snaps at guard. He had a poor season, especially from a run blocking standpoint, but he should make the roster based on his ability to play both outside and inside.
Ben Ijalana (No. 71)
One of the most disappointing draft picks in recent memory, Ijalana's lack of production is of no fault of his own. Ijalana looked like a potential long-term answer on the offensive line before he tore his ACL in his only live-game action in 2011. Last season, Ijalana once again tore his ACL, this time before training camp even started. He could have a place on this team, but it all depends on the coaches' faith in his knee.
Bradley Sowell (No. 60)
One of the Colts' depth linemen to see the field last season, Sowell was limited to less than 200 snaps, but still managed to exasperate every Colts fan who saw him play. Sowell struggled in both run and pass blocking, and the Colts will be looking to upgrade this year.
Lee Ziemba (No. 63)
Ziemba was a seventh-round pick by the Panthers in 2011 out of Auburn, but was waived this past December. Ryan Grigson immediately snapped him up and put him on the practice squad. He'll be one of the players competing to replace Sowell.
Emmett Cleary (No. 67)
The Colts' sole offensive linemen to be signed as an UDFA immediately after the draft, Cleary was Castonzo's roommate at Boston College. He was 2nd-team All-ACC in 2012, after playing every game in his final two seasons at BC. He's not a favorite to make the roster, but he has the best situation out of any of the UDFAs.
Donald Thomas (No. 66)
Even if Andrew Luck did deal with pressure coming from left guard fairly well last season, it was a revolving door all year, with Joe Reitz, Seth Olsen, Jeff Linkenbach and A.Q. Shipley all playing there at some point and struggling immensely. As a result, the Colts signed Donald Thomas in free agency, opting to pass on the high-profile signings like Andy Levitre and Louis Vasquez. Thomas was a reserve in New England, but impressed in limited time, and looks to take on a full-time starting role.
Hugh Thornton (No. 69)
Knowing their work on the OL wasn't done after signing Thomas and Cherilus in free agency, the Colts drafted Hugh Thornton in the third round of the 2013 draft. Thornton will compete with Mike McGlynn for the spot at right guard, but should see time as a reserve this season at the very least.
Mike McGlynn (No. 75)
Last season's worst starter, McGlynn stays in the rotation on the offensive line largely because of his ability to play both center and guard. He's a leader on the offensive line, and should make the roster, but his spot as a starter is in definite jeopardy. He'll start training camp on the first team, but Thornton will push him.
Joe Reitz (No. 76)
Fans had high hopes for Reitz after a solid season in 2011 next to Anthony Castonzo. But, after an injury stalled his return to the starting lineup, Reitz never looked the same. He struggled in both pass and run blocking in 2012, but should be the second-string left guard for 2013.
Justin Anderson (No. 79)
The Colts drafted Anderson in the seventh round last year to compete at guard, but injuries kept him out of regular season games. He's in real danger of getting cut this season and will need a strong camp to ensure he has a job in his sophomore season.
Robert Griffin (No. 73)
The Colts' Robert Griffin also hails from Baylor, but was selected by the Jets in the sixth round in 2012. He was cut after a few weeks and signed to the Colts' practice squad in December. Griffin played both guard and tackle while at Baylor, and brings an element of versatility to the guard unit. However, he couldn't get on the field last season and will have a tough time cracking the top four.
Samson Satele (No. 64)
There were high hopes for Satele when he arrived at Indianapolis on a three-year, $10.8 million contract. He was hailed as a great run-blocking center who would fix his inconsistency issues in a new place. Unfortunately, Satele's poor pass protection was even worse than expected, and his run blocking wasn't nearly good enough to make up for it. A detrimental force last season, Satele will battle it out with rookie Khaled Holmes, but should start training camp as the starter.
Khaled Holmes (No. 56)
The Colts' fourth-round draft pick in 2013, Holmes is Indianapolis' biggest center at 320 pounds. He has quick feet and should fit well in Pep Hamilton's blocking scheme. An injury nagged him during his final year at USC, and he'll have to show he's regained his 2011 form if he wants a chance at starting.
Rick Schmeig (No. 62)
A camp body picked up after A.Q. Shipley was traded to the Ravens, Schmeig played at both center and guard while at Purdue. While Schmeig does have some versatility, he won't be on the roster come September. The Colts simply have too much competition on the offensive line.
Cory Redding (No. 90)
Redding was a bit disappointing in his first season in Indianapolis, struggling to get pressure on the quarterback and being too inconsistent against the run game. However, Redding was hampered by various injuries in 2012, including knee, ankle, hip, triceps and quadriceps issues. If he can stay healthier in 2013, his play should improve. Either way, Redding is the most experienced DL on the team, and he will be the starter at five-tech defensive end.
Ricky Jean Francois (No. 99)
The fifth-year veteran out of LSU signed with Indianapolis in the offseason on a four-year, $22 million contract. While he's only been a rotational player thus far in his career, he's played well in limited minutes. The Colts obviously think he can take on a starting role, and he should be the starter at three-tech DE/DT.
Fili Moala (No. 95)
The Colts drafted Moala back in 2009 in the second round, but the former USC Trojan has never lived up to expectations. Nevertheless, Moala has value, especially as a penetrating pass rusher. He was the only Colts defensive linemen with more than 100 snaps to earn a positive grade in pass rushing from PFF, and should be a rotational lineman this season.
Drake Nevis (No. 94)
Nevis is the shortest defensive lineman on the Colts' roster, but has been one of the best against the run since joining the team in 2011. Injuries have hampered his development, but he still has high potential as a rotational three-tech defensive end.
Ricardo Mathews (No. 91)
Bill Polian and the Colts' previous front office selected Mathews in 2010 in the seventh round, and he became a rotational player in 2011 after injuries to Moala, Nevis and Eric Foster. The new coaches and front office thought he was useful in a similar role, and he ended up being the second-most used defensive linemen last season with 505 snaps. But, with new additions on the line, Mathews may not have a spot on the roster in 2013.
Montori Hughes (No. 73)
The Colts thought highly enough of Hughes to move up in the 2013 draft to select him in the fifth round. Hughes has the athleticism and size to play on any spot on the defensive line, but may need some development first. He should make the roster in 2013, but may not see the field much if others stay healthy.
Lawrence Guy (No. 67)
After injuries decimated the line last season, Guy played a key role in the final weeks of the season. While he is not a long-term solution, he played well enough in spots last season to get another tryout this year. It's hard to see him beating out Moala or Nevis for a spot, but anything could happen.
Kellen Heard (No. 65)
Along with Guy, Heard was the other unknown to play key snaps at the end of last season. Heard didn't play nearly as well, however, and has very little chance of making the 53-man roster this season.
Josh Chapman (No. 61)
Fans had big hopes for Josh Chapman last season, but his recovery from a torn ACL and meniscus in his left knee took longer than expected and kept him off the field during his rookie year. Now fully healthy, Chapman has been running with the first team defensively, and his success or failure (especially against the run) will be a huge factor in the Colts' defensive abilities.
Aubrayo Fanklin (No. 97)
Along with Chapman, Franklin has run with the first team defense in OTAs, and, after signing a one-year, $1.105 million contract, should be a rotational player at worst at nose tackle. The 10-year vet isn't as mobile as he once was, but can be effective in limited snaps.
Brandon McKinney (No. 96)
McKinney, like Chapman, was kept off the field for the entire season last year with a torn ACL. McKinney signed a two-year deal last summer, but is in danger of losing his spot on the team with the signing of Franklin.
Martin Tevaseu (No. 68)
One of the better depth players last season, Tevaseu played better than starter Antonio Johnson last season when injuries forced him onto the field. Unfortunately, there likely just won't be room for the third-year nose tackle on the 53-man roster.
Robert Mathis (No. 98)
The 10-year Colt had a bit of a down year last season, but still managed to pick up one of PFF's top 10 rush grades for 3-4 outside linebackers. Moving over to rush outside linebacker should help Mathis, as it's a more natural position for his talents. However, it also will be Mathis' first time as the primary pass-rusher without a premier talent opposite him. If Mathis has to carry the pass rush load alone, the Colts will struggle.
Erik Walden (No. 93)
The Colts offered Erik Walden one of the most surprising contracts in free agency this year, a four-year, $16 million contract. Walden was one of the worst pass-rushing outside linebackers in the league while in Green Bay, but he's decent against the run and in coverage. He should enter the season as the starter at SOLB.
Bjoern Werner (No. 92)
After letting Dwight Freeney go in free agency, the Colts desperately needed to add to an already-questionable pass rush. To do that, the Colts went to the draft, picking up Werner in the first round. Werner should start the season behind Walden, but may move into a starting position by the time the season ends.
Lawrence Sidbury (No. 52)
Another free agent target, the Colts signed Sidbury to a $780,000 contract for 2013. Sidbury has potential as a pass rusher, but wasn't able to get on the field while in Atlanta. He'll compete for a rotational spot behind Robert Mathis in Indianapolis.
Justin Hickman (No. 55)
Hickman played over 200 snaps for Indianapolis last season, mostly at outside linebacker. He was strong against the run, but didn't offer much in pass rush. For that reason, the Colts may try him at inside linebacker this season. The coaches like Hickman, and he should make the roster with his versatility.
Josh McNary (No. 48)
The former Army standout signed with the Colts this past April and has potential as a rush outside linebacker. He managed 28 sacks at Army (a school record) and will compete for a depth/special teams position once he has fulfilled his service.
Caesar Rayford (No. 49)
Rayford was signed to replace Jake Killeen in May, and he has a history of blocking kicks and sacking the quarterback. He was in the AFL for the previous three years and is looking to secure a spot as a depth and special-teams player.
Monte Simmons (No. 57)
Simmons experience on the Colts' practice squad last season should be a big boost to the second-year player out of Kent State, but he's still a long shot to make the roster.
Quinton Spears (No. 58)
Spears was a defensive end at Prairie A&M, but he is small at 230 pounds. He has some pass-rushing skills but would be a liability against the run if he ever made it on the field. If he makes the roster, it will be as a special teams player.
Jerrell Freeman (No. 50)
Freeman led the Colts both in tackles and stops last season, but got swallowed up by linemen often, allowing runs to gain four or five yards before picking up the tackle. With an improved defensive line this season, his play in that regard should be better.
Pat Angerer (No. 51)
Angerer played hurt all last season, but is recovering well and should be 100 percent for training camp. If he's healthy, the Colts' love his work ethic and tough play. He should start alongside Freeman.
Kelvin Sheppard (No. 59)
The Colts traded 2010 first-round pick Jerry Hughes to Buffalo for Sheppard, who was a starter in 2012, but struggled with inconsistency for most of the year. Sheppard should compete for a starting spot, but likely will be the third linebacker in the rotation.
Kavell Conner (No. 53)
The run-stopping specialist was the Colts' best run defender last season with his aggressive, physical style. He also showed an ability to blitz effectively, pressuring the quarterback four times in limited use. Unfortunately, he may get buried under the above three linebackers once the season starts. He'll make the roster, but may not get as many snaps this season.
Mario Harvey (No. 54)
He's been used in the past, but Harvey likely won't make the roster this time around. There's simply not enough room with the four 'backers ahead of him, plus Justin Hickman being used there in the offseason. If he makes it, he'll be injury insurance at best.
Scott Lutrus (No. 56)
Lutrus was lining up to be a solid depth linebacker last season before an injury in the Colts' first preseason game shut him down for the season. With Freeman's emergence and the acquiring of Sheppard, Lutrus' chances to make a difference in Indianapolis are swiftly dwindling.
Vontae Davis (No. 23)
Giving up a second-round pick for Davis was a bit risky for Ryan Grigson last fall, but it may very well pay off. It all depends on if Davis, entering his fifth year in the league, can finally fix some of the consistency issues that have plagued him. He came on strong at the end of the season, picking off three passes, knocking three more down and allowing a passer rating of 4.2 during the Colts' final three games.
Greg Toler (No. 28)
Another one of the Colts' mid-level signings to improve in free agency, Toler was an occasional starter in Arizona, and played very well in coverage during those limited snaps. He's struggled with some injury issues in the past, but when healthy he is a rangy corner who doesn't allow many completions. He's impressed in camp and should start opposite Davis.
Darius Butler (No. 20)
Butler played slot corner for the Colts last season, starting on several occasions when needed, and the Colts liked his performance enough to bring him back on a two-year deal. Butler was originally drafted by the Patriots in the second round in 2009, but had been cut and bounced around teams before landing in Indianapolis last year. Butler's allowed passer rating of 43.1 (subscription required) while in the slot was third best in the league last season (among 45 qualifying corners).
Cassius Vaughn (No. 32)
Vaughn started 12 games for Indianapolis in 2012, but was a detrimental force for most of the season, playing below average against both the run and pass, while also racking up an egregious amount of penalties. He should be relegated to a dime role at best this season, but the Colts' coaches showed a surprising amount of confidence in him last season.
Josh Gordy (No. 27)
A nickel corner after injuries knocked Jerraud Powers out for the season last year, Gordy is a subpar corner, and will be fighting to keep his roster spot this season.
Marshay Green (No. 25)
Green has bounce around active rosters and practice squads since being drafted by the Cardinals in 2012. He's also been a return specialist, so he may get a look there during camp. He's a long shot to make the roster.
Teddy Williams (No. 21)
Williams is a former track star who was signed to the Colts' practice squad last season. He didn't play football in college, but the Cowboys gave him a chance in 2010, and the Colts picked him up last October. He would be on the active roster for a few games, but only on special teams.
Allen Chapman (No. 29)
"Bubba" Chapman was signed after impressing at rookie mini-camp (he was invited on a tryout basis), and has a real chance at earning a spot on the roster or practice squad. Chapman was a starter at Kansas State last season.
Sheldon Price (No. 40)
One of the most well-known UDFAs, Price was a promising starter at UCLA but went undrafted due to his lack of bulk. Price was a playmaker during his senior season, picking off four passes and breaking up five additional attempts. He'll compete for the final DB spot on the roster.
Daxton Swanson (No. 34)
The last of the three UDFA corners, Swanson was an even bigger playmaker than Price while at Sam Houston State, picking off 12 passes in his final two years. He's a strong athlete with good speed (4.43 at pro day) and could produce in a depth role. He can also play safety, which will only help his bid for a roster spot.
Antoine Bethea (No. 41)
One of the Colts' most underrated players over the last five years, Bethea was stretched thin last season. Not only did the lack of quality secondary players hamper the six-year vet, but the Colts' worst run defense since 2006 (by DVOA) kept Bethea peeking at the line of scrimmage all season. He should be his Pro Bowl-worthy self with improved teammates in 2013.
LaRon Landry (No. 30)
The Colts missed on Tom Zbikowski, who they signed last season to be a hard-hitting strong safety. "Zibby" struggled mightily, however, and the Colts replaced him with Landry this offseason. Landry is the proto-typical "thumper" for the strong safety position, and should allow Bethea to go back to a more natural center-fielder role.
Joe Lefeged (No. 35)
Lefeged was lined up to be the third safety this season before an offseason arrest put a damper on his prospects. Lefeged hasn't been cut over the incident, and likely won't be, but it does put a magnifying glass on him for camp. If he has a bad preseason or seems ill-prepared, questions will arise.
John Boyett (No. 43)
Although Boyett was drafted in the sixth round in the 2013 NFL draft by the Colts, he could have gone as high as the second or third round if not for partially tearing both patella tendons. Boyett has great instincts as a center fielder and, hopefully, is the Colts' future at free safety. He may not play much this season, but he should stay with the franchise.
Delano Howell (No. 26)
After being put on the Bills practice squad last season, undrafted free agent Delano Howell was signed by the Colts and used as a special-teams player. Howell will compete for a similar role in training camp, but is a long shot to make the roster with Boyett and Lefeged locked into the reserve roles for now.
Larry Asante (No. 36)
A fifth-round pick by the Browns in 2010, Asante played several games for the Buccaneers in 2010 and 2011 after being cut in his rookie training camp. He was waived last year by Tampa Bay, and the Colts signed him in the offseason. Like Howell, he'll compete for a special teams role, but has a slim chance of making the roster.
Pat McAfee (No. 1)
McAfee is coming off of a Pro Bowl-worthy year in Indianapolis, and was recently given the franchise tag for 2013. A long-term deal should be worked out, and his spot as the Colts' punter is in no jeopardy. A familiar face for any fan, McAfee is also a weapon on special teams.
Adam Vinatieri (No. 4)
The oldest player on the roster, Vinatieri showed he still has power in his leg last season, going four for seven on kicks of 50+ yards last season. He was, however, inconsistent throughout the season, and his time in Indianapolis is coming to an end. It likely won't, however, be in 2013.
Brandon McManus (No. 2)
The Colts need somebody to keep Vinatieri from unnecessary wear and tear in the preseason, and McManus is that player. While he could theoretically earn a spot by out-kicking Vinatieri, it would come as a huge shock.
Matt Overton (No. 45)
Overton beat out long-time vet Justin Snow last season for the long-snapping job, and is the only one currently on the roster. He should be a lock to be a Colt in 2013 once again.