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@ethanwhudson Hm, I don't recall this one, but I'll take a look later.
5 days, 13 hours ago on Conversation @ http://coltsauthority.com/
@Fot Bollar OK, here goes. I'll try to give my thoughts on everything, but there's a lot to unpack here (thanks again for putting so much thought into your comment).
I admittedly don't watch anyone else's line nearly as much as I watch the Colts'. But from what I've seen, I think they're somewhere in the middle of the pack, probably slightly above average. They have plenty of room to grow. New England's line is really good (grrr), and I don't think the Colts are at that level. I've only seen the Packers a few times, but it's looked to me like they're actually around the Colts' level. You've obviously seen them more than I have, though, so I'm sure you have a better idea. The Colts have a good left guard, a very good left tackle, a decent right tackle who's having a bad year, and a complicated center/right guard situation that's largely their own fault. They don't have any real stars at this point, and the lack of continuity has hurt the chemistry. For what they are and what they have, I think they're playing pretty well. I'd love to see improvement, of course.I agree that Luck makes them look better, though you could say the same of the Packers' or Patriots' lines. "Good" lines almost always have a good quarterback behind them. Chemistry between a QB and his line is just as important as chemistry among linemen. I do think Luck sometimes holds the ball a bit long – sometimes it's his fault, and sometimes it's because the Colts run an aggressive downfield passing attack.
With the percentages, like you said, it's not quite every other play. It's still too frequent; they make too many mistakes and their chemistry isn't great. There are a lot of factors in that, not least of which is that Luck has some of the highest time to pass counts in the league, according to PFF.
It's also very true that all missed blocks are not equal; that's why I track a lot more than just completed and missed blocks. And more importantly, it's why I put so much effort into the writeups. I see the percentages as more of a guide than an end point. I'd love to chart other lines (or ALL the lines) so that I'd have a better idea of how the Colts stack up, but sadly, the day is too short.
Anyway, I'm sort of skirting the issue here. I know what you mean about the eye test. When I watch the games live, I often think they're playing terribly, only to find when I break it down that they played at about the same level they usually do. As with most things, I think it's multi-factorial: a downfield offense, a QB who doesn't like to take off until he absolutely has to, T-Rich (I won't get into that), high expectations after years of watching Peyton make pass rushes look foolish, a lack of any star linemen, a lack of continuity . . . there's a lot working against them. And they need to sort things out at center and right guard, whoever that may be. One or two guys having a bad day can kill everything in a hurry. I still think they're playing at a high enough level for the offense to succeed.
Whew, got a bit long-winded here, but I hope you find it useful. I'd be curious what others think, as well.
6 days, 4 hours ago on Conversation @ http://coltsauthority.com/
@Fot Bollar Thanks much for your thoughtful response. Your points are quite valid, and I'll respond at length later on (busy day at work). In brief, I don't think this Colts line is nearly at the level of the best in the league, and I fully agree that my percentage system has some flaws. I consider the explanation more important than the percentages.
6 days, 10 hours ago on Conversation @ http://coltsauthority.com/
@smonroe I liked him a lot. He still has a small sample, but pretty much all of that sample has been good.
1 week ago on Conversation @ http://coltsauthority.com/
@hankster Thank you! I'm not sure if you're among the crowd who have been reading and commenting over at Colts Academy, but it's nice to see a familiar name from last year. :)
@AJ_ The Fleener block was early in the second quarter. He usually tries hard in run blocking, he's just not good at it. That was definitely a preseason block.
As far as the D-line goes, if you can make the day 30 hours long, I will happily do it. :)
3 months, 4 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://coltsauthority.com/
@bradicus18 Zero, unless I've missed it. And thanks!
@bradicus18 It's all conjecture at this point, but I would guess Louis is the most likely interior guy to miss the cut if they keep someone like Walker. I'd be surprised if they keep 10, since Nixon and Reitz can both play guard or tackle and Mewhort can play guard or center and could also fill in at tackle in a pinch. Eight seems more likely than 10. Things will shake out more in the next couple preseason games.
4 months, 1 week ago on Conversation @ http://coltsauthority.com/
@Kyle Rodriguez @bradicus18 What Kyle said. Though I'd be tempted to at least try Gordy as the #2 if/when Toler goes down, since Butler has a history of getting whooped when playing on the outside.
5 months ago on Conversation @ http://coltsauthority.com/
@deputylefty Wayne, definitely. Nobody works harder than he does, and he's a great locker room guy. We'll have to see how Nicks fits in.
5 months, 1 week ago on Conversation @ http://coltsauthority.com/
@smonroe Thank you! And don't worry, the series is almost over, so soon you won't have to read the name anymore. Just Josh Gordy left to do.
@ECB I believe he's still eligible for the practice squad, since he wasn't active for nine games last year. But he showed enough potential that he'd probably get picked up if the Colts waived him.
Good question about the kick and punt returns. Looks like he returned some kicks at Tennessee and did all right. He might get a look there in preseason.
@ColtsDivisionChamps It's all moot now since they waived Brazill, but he was sort of a mix between the two. He was extremely fast and had pretty good hands, but he didn't run great routes, wasn't very physical and wasn't much of a blocker. There were also whispers that the Colts didn't like his attitude/work ethic.
@ECB 17 edge blocks, 9 successful (53%), 69 yards (4.1 average), one touchdown. 8- and 12-yard runs against San Diego and a 7-yard run against New England, which pulled the average way up. So things went pretty well when he played that role, but it's a very small sample.
6 months ago on Conversation @ http://coltsauthority.com/
@ECB Just because they're different and I wanted to focus on whether Havili was useful in the specific role of lead blocker. He was lined up as a tight end on a bunch of the kick-outs. I don't have the numbers with me at the moment, but the total number of kick-outs was somewhere in the teens, so about one a game. Wouldn't have had a significant effect on the stats. I can let you know what the numbers were later on, if you'd like.
@smonroe Certainly. I focused on his lead blocking here, but that's far from a fullback's only duty. He was a decent pass blocker and had some really good moments as a receiver, despite the occasional stone hands. He's surprisingly good at avoiding/breaking open field tackles. I haven't studied his special teams play, but he didn't pop out much.
Last year, he was basically Just A Guy. He flashed potential with his lead blocking early in the year and some of his catch-and-runs, but I'm not surprised they're looking at possibilities to replace him. If he played at his best all the time, he could be a useful weapon, but he didn't maintain that level.
@rogcohen Hm, where are you seeing that PFF credited him with three? I see one on there. Not sure what ESPN saw, but without reviewing my notes, I don't recall any other possibles.
6 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://coltsauthority.com/
@smonroe The next pick was Xavier Rhodes, a pretty good corner. Alec Ogletree and Kiko Alonso went not long after, as did Giovani Bernard. Plenty of good players were available, though of course hindsight is 20/20.
@awkd OK, should be all good now. Thanks again for spotting it.
@awkd Good lord, that's embarrassing. The ROLB line is off. My mistake. Will be corrected shortly. Thanks for pointing it out.
@hankster I'd like to be mad about Barnwell's remarks, but I think he's right. On the bright side, he did predict the Colts would regress in 2013, so it's not like he's always right.
7 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://coltsauthority.com/
@smonroe Well, I'd rather have you say that than the opposite. :)
@bradicus18 I doubt McNary plays much at OLB. Given his mobility and coverage skills, he makes more sense on the inside, and the Colts already have four guys they like at OLB with Mathis, Walden, Werner and Adongo. McNary also isn't great when a blocker is coming straight at him, as I pointed out in that GIF with Mankins, and that would be problematic if he was trying to set the edge.
@RWIN Yes, thanks much for the kind words. I intend to take a close look at Louis soon.
8 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://coltsauthority.com/
@DougEngland I mentioned these briefly in my season in review piece, though they didn't make it into the tables. The '/' block totals (like I said above, these were sometimes a result of an inactive linemen and sometimes a result of the scheme) were Satele 67, Castonzo 46, McGlynn 41, Cherilus 40, Thornton 38, Linkenbach 15, Nixon 12, Thomas 6, Reitz 1. Kyle, maybe you can add those to the lovely graphics?
@paulcareyjr 1. No. Those were '/' plays, which weren't counted toward the totals. Those are sometimes the lineman's fault (for not being active enough) and sometimes a result of the scheme, but Satele had more of them than anyone else by far.
2. This is where stuff gets subjective and why I tried to supplement my raw numbers with visual evidence as much as possible. I don't have a set time the lineman has to hold his block, but basically, if he holds it long enough that the play can go through as designed, I give him a +. If the lineman's man makes a tackle or clogs a lane on a running play, or if his man pressures the quarterback or has to be picked up by a running back on a passing play, he gets a -. There's tons of gray area, but I try to be as consistent as possible.
3. I definitely know what you mean; one of the biggest problems with my system is that it values a backside seal block the same as a playside clearout block. But crediting specific linemen for running plays gets extremely subjective very quickly. Like Kyle said, PFF tracks this data to some extent. I may end up revamping my system somewhat for next season, but for now it gives a good ballpark idea of how effective the linemen were.
@Bobman Thank you, sir. I'm using "dreg" in the sense of "the last remaining part," rather than "the most undesirable part." I don't mean it in a negative way, I just thought "dregs of the roster" had a nice ring to it.
8 months, 4 weeks ago on Dregs of the Roster: Montori Hughes Film Review
@bradicus18 I also wonder what this says about Holmes, though it might be very little, since both Costa and Holmes can also play guard. Looks to me like a depth/competition signing more than anything.
And thanks to you and smonroe for the kind words.
By the way, for you sticklers out there, the linebacker in that last play looped through the A gap, not the B gap. Like Costa, I have my occasional slip-ups.
9 months, 1 week ago on CA Charting Project: Reviewing Phil Costa
@Bobman Whoops, spoke too soon. Looks like Mack is probably out of the picture. Sigh.
9 months, 2 weeks ago on CA Charting Project: Reviewing free agent C Brian de la Puente
@Bobman @bengundy He never showed up on the injury report, but yeah, I do wonder if something was going on. Even at his best this year, I don't think he'd be much of an upgrade. I'm hoping Dietrich-Smith wows me (I'll be looking at him next week) and either he or Mack takes a reasonable deal. I'm starting to resign myself to another year of Satele, though.
9 months, 3 weeks ago on Colts Authority Fireside Chats: Free Agency Frenzy
@AJ_ This is how I feel, too. As we saw last year, and as we've seen many times in the past, dropping big bucks on free agents rarely ends up being a good idea. But Mack sure would help. The guy can really play.
9 months, 3 weeks ago on CA Charting Project: Reviewing free agent C Alex Mack
10 months ago on CA Charting Project: Offensive Line Season in Review
10 months, 1 week ago on Handling their Own: Discussing the Colts' Impending UFAs and Bubble Players
Heartily agreed on all counts. I'm terrified that they're going to bring back Satele for another year, though.
10 months, 3 weeks ago on Defending Crazy: Why I don't want the Colts to draft OL early
11 months ago on CA Charting Project: Offensive Line Charting, Divisional Round
11 months ago on Grigson, Colts Entering Crucial, Defining Off-season
Ah, you're right! I was confused about that, because I didn't remember him playing and I knew he didn't have any blocks, but I figured I had forgotten a few routes or something and would defer to FO. And I basically agree. While he's useful in limited duty, the offense works better when he doesn't play much.
11 months, 1 week ago on CA Charting Project: Offensive Line Charting, Wild Card Week
Not that I've seen. He almost always takes the guy clean off his feet. It's my favorite part of his game. We can forgive him for being a little overzealous every once in a while, right?
11 months, 2 weeks ago on Colts Notebook in Pictures: Two Key Scoring Plays
Thornton help slam! I love those. He's usually good for three or four a game.
Thank you! (And thanks to everyone else for commenting as well!) That's sort of what I'm shooting for. While I try to be as consistent as I can, I realize the percentages are somewhat meaningless by themselves. But they do provide a nice quantitative guideline for the more qualitative commentary.
12 months ago on CA Charting Project: Charting the Colts' Offensive Line, Week 15
Sadly, I don't think there's much more to say about Holmes. They don't think he's good or they would have given him a go by now. I thought he looked all right during preseason. Best case scenario, he's a late bloomer, but everything screams "wasted pick" at the moment. It's really a shame, because Thornton has promise, Thomas looked good before he got hurt, Castonzo is fine and Cherilus is passable. If everything breaks right (admittedly a big if, considering how far Thornton has to go), they could be a center away from having a decent line next year.
True true, but at the very least, at some point they should have noticed that the last man one of them could conceivably block was heading outside and maybe tried to get in his way a little.
1 year ago on Colts Notebook: Defense and O-line Seeking Late Season Momentum
1 year ago on CA Charting Project: Charting the Colts' Offensive Line, Week 14