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2007 NFL Draft – Colts: Round 3

Filed in SportsTags: Colts, Draft, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

Daymeion Hughes

With the 95th overall pick in the 2007 NFL Draft, the Indianapolis Colts take:

Daymeion Hughes, CB, Cal
(HT: 5'10 / WT: 190 / 40: 4.65)

Analysis:

  • ESPN.com
  • NFL.com

    Compares To: Ricky Manning, Chicago Bears … Play Hughes as a nickel back or as a free safety in the shallow zone and you might get good production out of him at the next level … He is best when playing the ball in the air, but lacks discipline, especially when asked to stay tight on the receiver in long routes … He is a bit too over confident in his ability to make the play and will gamble, but more often than not this results in the receiver slipping by him to make the big play … Few positions put such an importance on speed and field vision as a boundary cornerback needs … Despite those lofty interception and pass deflection totals, it is "buyer beware" with this boom-or-bust talent … Sure, he won the Pac-10 Defensive Player Award in 2006, but you have to question whether those voters ever saw how Robert Meachem of Tennessee, Steve Smith of USC or Richard Sherman of Stanford basically had Hughes for dinner last year.

  • SI.com

    A productive college cornerback who consistently comes up with the big play, Hughes is a terrific player. His lack of speed limits the type of systems he can be used in, but he has potential as an immediate starter in a zone-type scheme.

  • Fox Sports
  • Yahoo Sports

    A first-team All-American who has very good ball skills and the savvy of a 10-year veteran. Unfortunately, most 10-year NFL veteran cornerbacks could also still out run the soon to be rookie; ran high-4.5's to 4.7 at the NFL scouting combine and his pro day. He lacks great suddenness to his game. However, he will take that extra peak at the quarterback's eyes and put himself in prime position to make the play. His skills set is perfect for a zone coverage team, but he will still get burned on occasion as he lacks the burst to make up for mistakes. The expected early run on corners will still make it hard for teams to pass on him between Rounds 2-3.

  • NFL Draft Countdown

    Nickname is "Dante"...Had a big senior campaign and ranked among the nations leaders in interceptions...Would probably fit best in a Cover 2 or zone coverage scheme...Is somewhat overrated and really not as good as his reputation would indicate...Where he's ultimately drafted will depend on how he runs in workouts.

  • Scout.com

    A productive collegiate cornerback who consistently comes up with the big play, Hughes is a terrific football player. The lack of playing speed limits the type of systems he can be used in, but has potential as an immediate starter in a zone-type scheme.

  • Football's Future

    Daymeion Hughes has excelled on the football field, and still has upside left to his game. He is a playmaker and very aggressive on the field. He did not help his stock in the post season however. He measured up shorter than expected and only managed to run between a 4.6 and 4.7. He bounced back with a 4.56 at his pro day, but either way, he lacks the pure speed to be taken in the first round, where many projected him before the draft. His on field ability should be enough to land him in the third round area, and he is a player that could outplay his draft position.

Quinn Pitcock

With the 98th overall pick in the 2007 NFL Draft, the Indianapolis Colts take:

Quinn Pitcock, DT, Ohio St.
(HT: 6'2 / WT: 299 / 40: 4.93)

Analysis:

  • ESPN.com
  • NFL.com

    Compares To: Rocky Bernard, Seattle Seahawks … Pitcock is the classic overachieving blue-collar worker who might lack ideal athletic ability, but makes plays on his effort and tenacity … He is a strong bull rusher, who despite good pass rush figures in 2006, still lacks the moves, suddenness and speed to be effective pressuring the quarterback on a steady basis … He doesn't have the range to make plays outside the box and his frame might be at maximum growth potential, but he understands the defense and is alert to blocking schemes … His instincts and upper body strength are his best assets, but his lack of overall athleticism makes him a potential roster addition, but nothing more.

  • SI.com

    An overachiever who consistently gives great effort, Pitcock.s level of play has improved. Could be used as a conventional tackle and also offers possibilities as a two-gap lineman.

  • Fox Sports
  • Yahoo Sports
  • NFL Draft Countdown

    Grandfather, Bill Edwards, played football at Miami (OH) and his younger brother, Jafe, will be playing Division I college football next fall...An overachiever who gets the most out of his ability...Really came on as a senior and totally blew away his previous career highs in both tackles for a loss and sacks...Had shoulder surgery prior to his senior campaign and that will need to be checked out...The type who will never be a star but he's just very solid all-around and will play for a long time.

  • Scout.com

    An overachiever who consistently gives great effort, Pitcock’s level of play has improved. Could be used as a conventional tackle and also offers possibilities as a two-gap lineman.

  • Football's Future

    Quinn Pitcock may never be a big playmaker, but he is a very solid defensive tackle. His ability to control his gap may make him a good nose tackle prospect. Anyone looking for help stopping the run in the second or third will take a long look at him.

2007 NFL Draft – Colts: Round 2

Filed in SportsTags: Colts, Draft, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

Tony Ugoh

Trading the 126th overall pick and their 2008 first-round pick, with the 42nd overall pick in the 2007 NFL Draft, the Indianapolis Colts take:

Tony Ugoh, OT, Arkansas
(HT: 6'5" / WT: 301 / 40: 5.06)

Analysis:

  • ESPN.com

    The only logical reason for the Colts taking tackle is to start grooming a possible replacement for Tarik Glenn. Ugoh played in a run-heavy scheme at the collegiate level and he doesn?t project as a starting left tackle.

  • NFL.com

    Compares To: Marcus Johnson, Minnesota Vikings … Ugoh is an impressive-looking athlete, but needs to add more bulk to his frame … Like Johnson, he can maintain the rush lane and has decent lateral agility for the ground attack, but lacks the knee bend and kick slide to neutralize the edge rush. He is not an overpowering blocker, but does have a strong hand punch and can create movement off the snap … He just looks too stationary trying to mirror the pass rushers and looks too slow and clumsy when moving forward, doing a better job in his lateral moves or when retreating … If a team bulks him up and puts him inside at guard, he will be more productive, much like former Razorback Shawn Andrews (Eagles), who lacked the footwork to play tackle, but has had good success as a trap blocker at guard … There has to be a "buyer beware" tag with Ugoh, though, as he did not show much desire to play the game until his senior year, preferring track-and-field.

  • SI.com

    A tremendous pass-blocker whose game is on an upswing, Ugoh displays the ability to handle the blindside tackling duties. Needs to improve the strength of his base and must overcome the perception that he's not committed to football.

  • Fox Sports
  • Yahoo Sports

    The All-American came into his own as a senior, playing 14 games and allowing just one sack. Ugoh, who also competed in track until this past season, has bulked up and toughened up over the past year. His footwork has improved, but he will get too shallow off the snap at times when facing quicker edge rushers...He has long arms and his initial punch improved once he learned to keep his hands up and use them quicker off the snap. That said, he needs to increase his lower body strength...Ugoh could be a bit of a risky pick, but a strong showing at the combine could make him a possible mid-to-late first-round selection.

  • NFL Draft Countdown

    Was also a top discus thrower for the Razorbacks track and field team...Helped to pave the way for Darren McFadden and one of the most potent rushing attacks in the nation as a senior...Could potentially move inside to guard...Prospect on the rise who has most of the measurables and is coming off a great senior campaign.

  • Scout.com

    A tremendous pass-blocker whose game is on an upswing, Ugoh displays the ability to handle the blindside tackling duties. Needs to improve the strength of his base and must overcome the perception that he's not committed to football. Offers starting potential if the pieces fall into place.

  • Football's Future

    Ugoh has all the talent to be a very good NFL tackle, and a strong senior year has pushed him up draft boards. If he fill out his frame some before the draft, he may draw more consideration near the end of the first round. He is battle tested in the SEC, and has a lot of untapped potential.

2007 NFL Draft – Colts: Round 1

Filed in SportsTags: Colts, Draft, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

Anthony Gonzalez

With the 32nd overall pick in the 2007 NFL Draft, the Indianapolis Colts take:

Anthony Gonzalez, WR, Ohio St.
(HT: 6'0 / WT: 193 / 40: 4.44)

More YouTube

Analysis:

  • ESPN.com

    With the departure of Brandon Stokley means Indianapolis needed a No. 3 receiver and Gonzalez should slide right into that role. Though Gonzalez isn't as explosive as Ohio State teammate Ted Ginn Jr., he runs crisp routes and isn't afraid to go over the middle and he doesn't drop passes he should catch.

  • NFL.com

    Compares To: Devery Henderson, New Orleans -- Gonzalez has impressive explosion coming off the snap and is very alert working along the sidelines. He has the speed to gobble up the defensive back's cushion and uses that quickness to create separation rather than rely on crisp, precise footwork. He needs to improve his hand usage to get a clean release and must increase his strength, but in a multiple-receiver formation he can give decent value working in the slot.

  • SI.com

    Productive college receiver who consistently elevated his game, Gonzalez nicely projects as a second or third wideout at the next level.

  • AOL Sports Blog

    And the guy has literally crazy work ethic. Dude sleeps in an oxygen tent. There are no character concerns here. Gonzalez is going to show up and be a great #2 receiver for ten years, and he's definitely worth a mid-to-late first round pick.

  • Yahoo Sports

    An under-rated playmaker who should develop into a solid secondary option. He needs to do a better job of fighting through press coverage as he gets knocked off his routes at times. He will have a few drops at times and does not always play with great suddenness. Gonzalez is very quick in the open field and is able to slip initial tacklers after the catch. An interesting kid that has great work habits, he may also be tried on returns at the next level.

  • NFL Draft Countdown

    Was overshadowed by his teammate Ginn but some feel he may wind up being a better pro...Was used as more of a possession receiver in college and often times worked out of the slot but his physical tools lead you to believe he could be much more...He reminds me a bit of Kevin Curtis...Probably best suited to be a #2 or #3 wideout at the next level...He'll never be a star but will be a valuable contributor.

  • Scout.com

    Productive college receiver who consistently elevated his game, Gonzalez nicely projects as a second or third wide out at the next level.

  • Football's Future

    Gonzalez may not have the talent to be a go to target, but his combination of skills, intelligence, and toughness will allow him to make an impact in the league. He is a player you can count on and who will always go full tilt. Gonzalez has had a nice showing at the combine and at his pro day, and may have pushed himself into the second round.

News From the Hometown

Filed in PersonalTags: Indiana, Shelbyville

I ran across some interesting news from the hometown:

First, Shelbyville's largest employer, Knauf Fiberglass, suffered a fire in the oldest part of its manufacturing plant. Smoke from the fire caused my old elementary school, Coulston, to close for the day, and efforts to stop the blaze nearly drained the city's water supply and caused several restaurant and school closures. Fortunately, the plant should be up and running again soon.

In more disturbing news, my former sixth-grade teacher, Tom Piles, was suspended by Shelbyville Middle School after being issued a citation for indecent exposure on I-74 near Shelbyville.

World Champions!

Filed in SportsTags: Colts, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

Super Bowl XLI

Final Score: Colts 29, Bears 17

Colts Lombardi Trophy

Peyton Manning, MVP

Manning, MVP

Kelvin Hayden seals the deal with an interception returned for a touchdown:

Hayden INT

Dungy gets the Gatorade bath:

Dungy Gatorade Bath

This game was one wild ride...

And somehow I have to try to go to sleep tonight, so I can get up and go to work tomorrow...

Go Joe! Get IN!!!

Filed in SportsTags: Colts, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

Courtesy of Cranky Colt (Indy-Star Colts message board's TrollAlertGuy) comes this home video of Joseph Addai's game-winner:

Update: Here's a video of crowd reaction to Marlin Jackson's game-sealing interception.

Update II: video source changed; updated accordingly. See also this compilation video.

St. Louis Post-Dispatch Super Bowl XLI Preview

Filed in SportsTags: Colts, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch previews Super Bowl XLI

In an otherwise decent analysis, I found this little gem [emphasis added]:

On running downs, the Bears like to load the box with an extra defender or two. Their starting point against every opponent is stuffing the run, and making teams one-dimensional. That was the case against the Saints, who ran only 12 times for 56 yards. Colts running backs Joseph Addai and Dominic Rhodes combined for 1,722 rushing yards and 12 TDs during the regular season, but they're not in the class of McAllister and Bush.

Interesting comment, that. Let's compare, shall we?

New Orleans RBs

  • Deuce McCallister: Rushing 244/1057 yds, 4.3 ypc, 10 TD
    (Receiving 30/198 yds, 6.6 ypc, 0 TD)
  • Reggie Bush: Rushing 155/565 yds, 3.6 ypc, 6 TD
    (Receiving 88/742 yds, 8.4 ypc, 2 TD)
  • Total: Rushing 399/1622 yds, 4.1 ypc, 16 TD
    (Receiving 118/940 yds, 8.0 ypc, 2 TD)

Indianapolis RBs (Reg. Season)

  • Joseph Addai: Rushing 226/1081 yds, 4.8 ypc, 7 TD
    (Receiving 40/325 yds, 8.1 ypc, 1 TD)
  • Dominique Rhodes: Rushing 187/641 yds, 3.4 ypc, 5 TD
    (Receiving 36/251 yds, 7.0 ypc, 0 TD)
  • Total: Rushing 413/1722 yds, 4.2 ypc, 12 TD
    (Receiving 76/576 yds, 7.6 ypc, 1 TD)

In the regular season, New Orleans faced rush defenses that averaged #14.5 in the league. Indianapolis faced rush defenses that averaged #18 in the league. Among common opponents (regular season and playoffs) the Saints rushed 217/897 yds (4.1 ypc), while the Colts rushed 176/702 yds (4.0 ypc).

And bear in mind, during the regular season, Rhodes started for the Colts, with Addai seeing mostly second-half action. During the playoffs, Addai has been starting (against some of the league's best defenses in Baltimore and New England), with Rhodes playing long stretches in the second half.

New Orleans RBs (Playoffs: 2 games)

  • Deuce McCallister: Rushing 27/161 yds, 6.0 ypc, 1 TD
    (Receiving 7/47 yds, 6.7 ypc, 0 TD)
  • Reggie Bush: Rushing 16/71 yds, 4.4 ypc, 1 TD
    (Receiving 10/154 yds, 15.4 ypc, 1 TD)
  • Total: Rushing 43/232 yds, 5.9 ypc, 2 TD
    (Receiving 17/201 yds, 11.8 ypc, 1 TD)

Indianapolis RBs (Playoffs: 3 games)

  • Joseph Addai: Rushing 57/217 yds, 3.8 ypc, 2 TD
    (Receiving 12/52 yds, 4.3 ypc, 0 TD)
  • Dominique Rhodes: Rushing 41/193 yds, 4.7 ypc, 0 TD
    (Receiving 6/62 yds, 10.3 ypc, 0 TD)
  • Total: Rushing 98/410 yds, 4.2 ypc, 2 TD
    (Receiving 18/114 yds, 6.3 ypc, 0 TD)

In the playoffs, New Orleans faced rush defenses that averaged #16 (#26, #6) in the league. Indianapolis faced rush defenses that averaged #8 (#18, #2, #5) in the league.

Clearly, Addai/Rhodes are "in the same class" as McCallister/Bush. They had more total yards, more yards per carry, and slightly fewer rushing TDs. The only real statistical difference comes in receiving. Brees favored his RBs as secondary receivers, whereas Manning favors his TEs. (Compare: the Saints' leading TE had 18 receptions and was Brees' #8 receiver; the Colts' leading TEs had 37 and 30 receptions and were Manning's #3/4 receivers, and their third TE had 18 receptions as Manning's #7 receiver. Meanwhile, Bush/McCallister were Brees' #3/6 receivers; Addai/Rhodes were Manning's #5/6 receivers.)

I don't think the Bears will be approaching this game thinking of Addai and Rhodes as "not in the same class" as McCallister and Bush.

2006 AFC Champions!

Filed in SportsTags: Colts, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

Indianapolis Colts: 2006 AFC Champions!

AFC_champs_dungy.jpg

38-34

AFC_champs_addai_1.jpg

A complete team effort.

AFC_champs_addai_2.jpg

Biggest comeback victory in conference championship history!

AFC_champs_celebrate.jpg

Finally.

AFC_champs_manning.jpg

The conference playoffs have been concluded. Two more weeks before Super Bowl XLI. I'm just hoping I can get to sleep tonight. More? Well, at least there are more photos.

Money: Colts 15 – Ravens 6

Filed in SportsTags: Colts, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

Manning was the chess mastermind, controlling the game from the line of scrimmage and putting the team in range for the foot of Adam Vinatieri, who was, in the words of Tony Dungy, "money":

adam_vinatieri_money.jpg

AFC Championship Game, here we come!

Busy Weekend

Filed in PersonalTags: College, Friends, Indiana, Missouri, Photos, RHIT, Saint Louis, Terre Haute

Steph and I had a busy weekend. We left Friday evening for Rose-Hulman's Homecoming weekend. As in previous years, accomodations were a tent on the grounds of the fraternity house. Activities included the Pep Rally and Bonfire Friday night, followed by the annual Alpha Chi Sigma alumni dinner at Applebee's, and then another bonfire at the Pike house. Saturday, we visited the Chemical Engineering department open house, then joined the Rose Chorus to sing the national anthem before the football game, complete with F-16 flyover from the local air national guard unit. The game included copious amounts of roasted pig. Later that evening was the annual Pi Kappa Alpha actives-vs-alumni softball game at the IM fields, which spawned a pickup game of actives-vs-alumni football - and, of course, more food: grilled burgers and brats. Afterward, we had more bonfire action at the house. Sunday morning we had the annual Pike alumni association meeting on campus. After lunch, Steph and I headed back toward Saint Louis.

RHIT Homecoming 023

Homecoming 2006 Photo Set
Photo © Chip Bennett, all rights reserved.

Of course, on the way home, Steph and I took a detour to Hidden Lake Winery in Aviston, IL, for a wedding. Two friends from college were getting married on a gorgeous Fall afternoon.

Colleen's Wedding 002

Colleen's Wedding Photo Set
Photo © Chip Bennett, all rights reserved.