2015 Depth Charts: Indianapolis Colts

| 2 years ago

2015 Depth Charts: Indianapolis Colts

IND Depth Chart


•  Will Trent Richardson even be on the roster by the time the season rolls around? Even if he is it’s unlikely he’ll be high up the depth chart. A player who can force missed tackles with ease, he just hasn’t been able to put it all together, with it looking increasing unlikely that it ever will.

•  Improving his consistency, Andrew Luck has pushed himself into the Very Good group at quarterback. His only really poor game came against the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship game, and he’ll be hoping to lead them to the Super Bowl in 2015.

•  Can Robert Mathis perform at a high level coming back from injury at the age of 34? Well, until we see otherwise it’s hard to say that he can’t. That 2013 season was special though, and it’d be huge for the Colts if he can get back to that level.

•  Some may feel that Elite is too high for Vontae Davis, but he’s performed at a high level two years in a row now so it’s difficult to say he isn’t among the best cornerbacks in the game right now.

Team Needs

Running Back: Taking what may or may not happen with Richardson out of the equation, the Colts still need to add a quality running back or two this offseason. If Vick Ballard can return healthy then he can be a solid backup, but finding a true starter is a must.

Defensive Back: Outside of Davis, there’s a lot of question marks in the defensive backfield. They need more quality at cornerback with him, while at safety right now the starters would likely be Dewey McDonald and Delano Howell, who we haven’t seen enough of to judge.

Offensive Line: Castonzo and Mewhort have the makings of a solid duo on the left side of the line, but at this stage there are serious question marks over the other three starters on the line. Center is the biggest concern, where Khaled Holmes really struggled last season, but neither Thornton or Cherilus impressed on the right side in 2014.


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| Analyst, Lead Special Teams Analyst

Gordon has worked at PFF since 2011, and now heads up the company’s special teams analysis processes. His work in-season focuses on college football, while he is also heavily involved in PFF’s NFL draft coverage.

  • Ryan Wilson

    I enjoy the depth charts but I would suggest having the teams free agents ranked also in a side column so we can see who has the value to bring back to the team.

    • Chris


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      • Chris


      • Vitor

        Where is that shark?

    • Vitor

      Yeah, especially because this soon (before draft and FA) I think these depth charts are more of a “how your team was in 2014″ than a “how your team will be in 2015″ thing.

      • Chris

        It just makes more sense to put FAs on there. Sure some guys won’t be back, but some of them (and usually a majority for some teams) will be. I vote to put them on there, assuming they will be resigned, and remove them as they get signed away. Gives a better picture of the roster at the current moment.

        • DrAWNiloc

          Exactly. Free agents could be asterisked.

        • mutzki

          They are doing this again after the draft aren’t they? They did that last year at least. If they were listing FAs on these Depth Charts doing it again would be somewhat redundant, resulting in them getting less clicks on their site. They have to make money, too.

          • Izach

            I think they could still make a second one for FA that switched teams, makes no sense not to include Reggie Wayne on colts or Dez bryant in Cowboys rosters

  • Jaguars28

    The Colts got darn lucky getting Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck #1.

    Luck should be elite, BTW.

    • Chris

      Not yet. They’ve alluded to the fact that yes he plays very well at stretches and looks elite, but at other times he makes dumb mistakes and misses some very simple throws. That’s why his grade as a passer went up from outside the top 20 to top 10 this year, because he’s grown and started to cut out some of that crap.

      The one I disagree with is Mathis. He was only elite because he was PEDing. Now he’s going to be 34, coming back after missing a full season, with no PED advantage? I’d put him Good at best. Just my opinion.

      • Jaguars28

        Eh, has Mathis been PED-ing his whole career? He’s was awesome before the 2013 season.

        I can see where you’re coming from with Luck. I think he will be elite after ’15.

        • Chris

          I can definitely see him progressing to Elite if he continues to cut out the mistakes and improve his game as a whole.

          As far as Mathis..

          Throughout his career he’s been a fairly productive rusher. After reviewing his positional grades he’s usually been in the top 10 as a pass rusher while his grade in run support usually drags him down.

          From 2010-2012 (3 years) he ranked in the bottom 10 at his position in run support while ranking in the top 10 in pass rushing. Suddenly in 2013 he figured it out and ranked 2nd in pass rushing and in the top 15 in run support. He’s only ranked top 15 one other time in his career.

          To me it just seems like a guy who was a pretty good pass rusher but didn’t amount to much in the run game, suddenly got stronger through the use of PEDs and he became competent in run support and even better as a pass rusher.

          I’d expect him to regress in both phases after a year off with no PEDs helping him. Usually in the case of an injury where a player misses a season MAYBE they take some PEDs to help them recover quicker and get back to form and shake the rust off faster. Mathis doesn’t have that option unless he’s just that ballsy.

          • Magyar Newton

            Mathis’s improvement in run support was simply because Indy has changed their defensive schemed from 4-3 to 3-4. His role changed from a 4-3 DE to a 3-4 OLB, with more run support duties in Pagano’s defense than was in Dungy-s.

          • Chris

            He’s been in a 3-4 two years. He was dismal in run support one of those years, and near the top in the year he got busted for PEDs.

          • Magyar Newton

            I would be careful to judge him – not just him but quite many others – by the first Grigson/Pagano year b/c that year was a transitional year for the Colts – in every possible aspect. Schematically and in personnel -they’ve still had Freeney for example -, and Pagano missed most of the year due to his illness, and the Colts were led by Arians who is great but an offensive mind. Vontae Davis for example also was far from his 2nd and 3rd year production.

            Btw, I don’t believe that PEDs could help a 30+ player suddenly become a lot better run stopper. It helps regain strength, rebuild muscle, etc. (after an injury or a “lazy summer” for example), but doesnt teach better technic, better timing, etc. The latter is what makes the real difference – along with how the player is being used in the scheme – not the former.

        • Vitor

          If Luck can take this team that far again, he undoubtedly deserves that label

    • Riffle,Rod&Fly

      I agree with an Elite rating for Luck but can easily see why its hard to give it to him. This team relies heavily on his arm and high risk/high reward throws are the norm. Other offenses tend to be more conservative in the passing game and probably do not have QBs who could get away with what Luck can.

      If you’re basing it purely on numbers, I can see very good or even good. If you’re basing it on the day to day potential impact he has on the field and the uncanny mix of attributes then he is Elite.

      Who says the colts were lucky btw… The Jags should learn to sandbag. 😛

    • DrAWNiloc

      Not “lucky”. Some teams have, over time, demonstrated the ability to recognize QB talent. Others? Not so much.

      • Doug Emerson

        Yes, because deciding whether or not Andrew Luck was a good QB was so hard.

        • DrAWNiloc

          You’d think, right? Nevertheless, the list of #1 or #2 QBs who were busts isn’t that short. More to the point, the list of teams that consistently fall for washouts is longer still.

          • bobrulz

            But the Colts happened to get that #1 pick in years where the #1 pick was a no-brainer. That rarely happens.

          • DrAWNiloc

            Forgetting about Ryan Leaf, we might say the same of their Peyton Manning choice. Even if we don’t see that as a pattern, an entire generation of Indi fans has grown up understanding what a QB looks like. With all due respect to their supporters, the Jets wouldn’t recognize a QB if they were stuck in a phone booth with Joe Montana.

      • Jeff

        Are you serious? The Colts have been absurdly lucky at the quarterback position for decades! They’ve gotten quite lucky at having the #1 pick when the best quarterback in the era comes out. The only time they flamed out at the top pick was when they drafted Jeff George. Still though, if Luck plays 15yrs or more in Indy (book-ended by Peyton) that’s 30yrs of ELITE quarterback play (minus the 2010 season).

        You can also include Bert Jones (2nd overall 1973) with 9yrs in Indy. He was an amazing quarterback prospect. Guy had the mobility of Luck with one of the strongest arms in NFL history. His career was cut short by injuries. Though a healthy Bert Jones was arguably one of the top quarterbacks in the 1970s.There was also of course Johnny Unitas (17yrs) in the 50s-60s. No need to elaborate on how great Johnny U was.

        Heck, you can also include Jim Harbaugh, on a 2nd tier of Colts QB’s. For the 4yrs when he was good, it was in Indy. He led them to the playoffs a few times including losing in the conference championship. Though even when he was bad he led them to drafting Peyton Manning. So it was really a win.

        • DrAWNiloc

          How many times does a team have to be “absurdly unlucky” before we ascribe their fate to skill?

  • Yonatan Bogale

    where is Bjoern Werner?

    • battletoads

      He is right there in Red where he belongs.

      • Yonatan Bogale

        haha, forgot he was an OLB an not a DE.

      • JackBauer2016

        Fail. He’s not worth a 1st rounder but with that said, he’s at worst an Average starter. Funny enough, the same website has Dion Jordan listed as Average when he’s been utter crud.

  • Supychou

    I think you have McAfee and Davis in “elite”, but not in the box below (only “1” elite).

    • Gordon McGuinness

      Thanks, fixed.

  • AJ

    If Vontae Davis’s elite status is based on the past 2 seasons, shouldn’t 2013’s performance put him just below elite? He had a top 5 grade in 2013, but almost 3/4 of that grade is from one single game. He was elite in 2014, but simply very good in 2013.

    • Gordon McGuinness

      Correct, in the not I said he performed at a “high level” for the past two seasons. In my opinion he was very good in 2013 and elite this year, which adds up to elite for me.

      • AJ

        That makes sense. Thanks for answering.


    They really have to get Andrew luck some weapons, I think the colts organization is wasting his potential. He could be throwing for over 50 touchdowns every year.

  • JackBauer2016

    What a joke. For a team that almost made the Super Bowl, to have a whopping 75% of the team be average-below average-poor-unknown is beyond bizarre.

    Coby Fleener almost 800 yards catching as a TE…Average starter? Same as Vick Ballard who hasn’t played in 2 seasons?

    Erik Walden and D’Quell Jackson are Average starters, not Below-average. Same with Greg Toler.

    Arthur Jones was limited by injuries only; the team clearly had better defense stats when he was in the game, so can’t agree with the below-average a bit.

    Bjoern Werner may not be worth a 1st rounder…but he’s a Jarrett Johnson type player at worst. Why is Dion Jordan given an average rating when Werner is given Poor Starter?

    The same website that has Dontari Poe listed as Good starter instead of Elite…Connor Barwin with 14.5 sacks as Average.

    I’m literally ROTFLMFAO right now, such that my sides are hurting.

    • battletoads

      I don’t think you understand how the grading works. There is more to the grades than just stats. I am not sure where they make the cut off for each section of players as far as elite/good/average etc. but I believe that is just their grades stacked up against everyone else’s. As a huge Colts fan myself I don’t have a huge issue with a lot of these classifications. We really are missing a lot of good talent on this team. Outside of our division for the last three years we are just a .500 team. I think there are guys in this list that could have higher grades if it wasn’t for injuries like Arther Jones and Gosder Cherilus. There are other guys that I think are still ascending like Moncrief, Allen, Fleener and Newsome. There is clearly talent on this team that we can build around but there are also some guys that need to be replaced.

  • Kirk Vollmer

    Is it really fair to list Trent as below average instead of poor? Guy has the athletic tools but he has basically zero vision. . . He just runs straight ahead and doesn’t look for the hole. Herron while not being a great player himself out performed him significantly and is rated the same as him?

  • zinn21 zinn21

    Just browsing through team picks, the Indianapolis Colts had a very good draft. They have arguably the best QB in Andrew Luck who now has Ty Hilton and Phillip Dorsett blazing on the outside and veteran former Houston Texan Andre Johnson working the middle… Frank Gore running the ball with Josh Robinson the modern human bowling ball backing him up. Then they drafted both Stanford tackles Henry Anderson and David Perry to push and stuff along with D Joun Smith and Clayton Gathers in the secondary.. That’s a really good draft. IMO Colts should be early favorites to run the table in the AFC..