NFL

Na·tion·al Foot·ball League (NFL): the highest level of professional American football. Posts in this category pertain to the National Football League (NFL).

2006 NFL Draft: Round 3 – Colts

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

keiaho

With the 94th overall pick in the 2006 NFL Draft, the Indianapolis Colts take:

Freddie Keiaho, ILB, San Diego St
(HT: 5'11 / WT: 224 / 40: 4.65)

Analysis:

2006 NFL Draft: Round 2 – Colts

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

jennings

With the 62nd overall pick in the 2006 NFL Draft, the Indianapolis Colts take:

Tim Jennings, CB, Georgia
(HT: 5'8 / WT: 182 / 40: 4.33)

Analysis:

2006 NFL Draft: Round 1 – Colts

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

addai_stock

With the 30th overall pick in the 2006 NFL Draft, the Indianapolis Colts take:

Joseph Addai, RB, LSU
(HT: 5'11 / WT: 214 / 40: 4.4)

Addai

Analysis:

Goodbye, Vandy; Hello… Vinatieri!

Filed in SportsTags: Colts, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

Well, if you're going to let go of the most accurate place kicker in NFL history (and in a lot of ways, good riddance), might as well replace him with Mr. Clutch:

Among the first to welcome Adam Vinatieri to Indianapolis this week was Colts quarterback Peyton Manning. The significance of a thoughtful phone call was not lost on the kicker, introduced Thursday at Union Federal Football Center as the heir apparent to Mike Vanderjagt. Later Thursday, Vanderjagt signed with the Dallas Cowboys.

"Yeah, that's a good start. It's cool when you get star quarterbacks calling the lowly kickers," said Vinatieri, who won three Super Bowl rings with New England but departed via free agency for the long-term security of a five-year, $10 million contract with the Colts.

I know, I'm a week late on this one... it's been a long week!

In other Colts news, Mathis signed a one-year, $2MM RFA tender.

And finally, the Colts will continue a couple recent trends next season: playing on the road in New England, and opening the season on the road - though this year's opener will be a prime-time face-off of the brothers Manning, as the Colts will be visiting the New York Giants.

Arizona Now Has The Edge

Filed in SportsTags: Colts, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

According to the Official Arizona Cardinals web site, Edgerrin James, formerly of the Indianapolis Colts, has agreed to a 4-year contract:

The Arizona Cardinals Football Club has agreed to a 4-year contract with running back Edgerrin James. In accordance to team policy terms of the deal were not disclosed.

This deal is important for me for a couple reasons: one, obviously, as a Colts fan, I am disappointed to see one of the team's best running backs (and a decent person all-around) leave, and two, living in Saint Louis, I'll be very interested to see what this move does for the hometown team's NFC West Division. Kurt Warner, with a good receiving corps and now one of the game's best RBs - along with a good defense - could mean that a new sheriff could be coming to town in the West. We'll see...

I've always been in the school of thought that the Colts' offense is as balanced, diverse, and potent as it is because of the caliber of James' play: running, receiving, and blocking; few RBs can do all three as well as Edge. But, I'm sure the Colts' management knew this day was coming (as with the Faulk trade that brought James to Indy in the first place), and have a plan in mind to deal with it.

Some people are upset that James would leave Indy to go to a supposedly non-contender like Arizona, simply for the money; however, the owners view all aspects of football as a business, and why shouldn't the players? In modern professional sports, we are long past the era of the true "franchise" players. Rare is the player - especially the super-star - who starts and ends his career with the same team (in any sport).

James has done nothing but produce on the football field for the Colts, and had done so quietly and without glory-hogging. For that, I will be eternally grateful and will always have great respect for Edge. He has always demonstrated that his desire is to provide for his family and to give back to his community, while maintaining his ability to enjoy his life after his football career is over. This contract is likely his last, and if going to Arizona will allow him to continue to pursue his goals, then I say: more power to him, and best of luck with Arizona.

The Colts’ New Home: Lucas Oil Stadium?

Filed in SportsTags: Colts, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

Several Indiana news outlets, including the Indy Star, are reporting that Lucas Oil Products will have naming rights to the Colts' new stadium, expected to be completed in 2008:

The naming rights for the new Colts stadium are expected to be awarded to Lucas Oil Products, a California-based company started by a small-town Indiana trucker, according to people with knowledge of the negotiations who requested anonymity.

And as for how they'll use those naming rights?

The domain names www.lucasoilstadium.com and www.lucasstadium.com were registered Monday with the Internet company Network Solutions.

I can see the nicknames already:

The Oil Field

The Petroledome (well, I'm leaning toward this one, anyway)

One Of The Reasons I’m a Fan

Filed in Religion, SportsTags: Christianity, Colts, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

The Colts moved to Indianapolis when I was seven years old. (Ironically enough, before then, I was a Steelers fan - insofar as a toddler can be a "fan" of anything; but I do remember my Steelers pajamas.) While I followed my new hometown team since their arrival, my footbal fanatacism began in earnest in high school, and gained prominence when my interest in baseball waned after the mid-90s strike. I discovered true passion for the team because of the players: Biscuit, Goose, Captain Comeback of the mid-90s era, to the players today. I appreciate that the team - whether be design or coincidence - seems to emulate the midwestern values of its host city: hard work, humility, faith. When Tony Dungy was hired as head coach, I couldn't have imagined a better choice. He is a great coach, but he is an even greater man. A good coach sets the tone for the team, and this Colts team is truly a family:

Every year, we hear about teams whose bonds have been forged through the fires of adversity -- adversity meaning a three-game losing streak. The members of this organization, though, have come together through the most personal and distressing of all circumstances.

The Colts are not just the best team in the league and the prohibitive favorite to win Super Bowl XL. They are also the most united, the most resolute team, and they have been all season.

Anyone who follows this team knows that such sentiment is more than just flattery. And I'll say without hesitation that the team unity has much to do with the faith of it's coach - it's leader and symbolic father: the same faith shared by many of the players:

The Colts' Johnson, 45, leads a weekly Bible study for coaches and another for players. With his wife, Della, he hosts Bible studies for players and their wives and offers marriage counseling.

He delivers a short sermon and sometimes sings at the 30-minute worship services over which he is primarily responsible on the eve of most games.

Not that I would try to put anyone up on a pedestal, but is good to be able to follow and root for men like these. It makes the success that much sweeter. In the words of Bob Kravitz:

A Super Bowl won't bring James back, won't be a salve on a wound that will last forever. But for a group that has cried together, the chance to celebrate together, to chase away one man's grief for a couple of hours, would be very sweet, indeed.

An Inspiring Witness

Filed in Religion, SportsTags: Christianity, Colts, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

The Colts' 17-13 JV win over Arizona was meaningless in the Super Bowl hunt, but for the mostly backup players on the field, it meant a great deal. Hunter the Punter eloquently describes the sentiment:

"Coach Dungy has a heart that beats in all these players,'' punter Hunter Smith said. "This game is about money and entertainment and all those things, but every once in a while, you come across a special person. His heart comes through in every part of his life. And now I see it coming through in us.''

That Dungy is a man of faith is well-known, and it is the foundation of the near-universal respect he garners. But it is in times of trouble that one's faith truly becomes both a source of sustaining strength and an inspiring witness. Tony Dungy's faith exemplifies both:

"There's a story in the Bible,'' Dungy said, speaking to a small group of reporters after his news conference. "David's son is sick, and they're praying for him. The whole time, he won't eat, won't do anything. The son ends up dying. What David says, basically, is 'I've got to go to temple and worship. I've got to get back to work.'

"Everybody asked him how he could do that. And he said, 'Now that my son is in heaven, there's nothing I can do.' As Christians, we believe the future is in God's hands, and we have eternal life.

". . . More than anything, I had to make a statement that, if I'm a Christian, if I feel like God is in control of my future, I've got to move on, as tough as it is. My wife (Lauren) and I discussed it and (returning Thursday) was something we felt was necessary. We're still healing, but it's important to move forward."

At one point, he was asked how sorely his faith was tested.

He took a long pause.

"You always have those questions,'' Dungy said. "But I never felt like God dealt us a bad hand. I've heard from so many people and we're not the only ones who experienced the death of a child. . . . The Lord has a good plan for your wife and family, even if it doesn't seem like it now.''

Amen.

Sweet!

Filed in SportsTags: College, Colts, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL, RHIT

The Indy Star is reporting that the Colts will return to Rose-Hulman:

Tony Dungy got his wish: The Indianapolis Colts will spend future summers in Terre Haute, Ind.

The team and officials at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology announced Thursday that the Colts will return to campus for a seventh summer of training camp. Players report July 27.

Apparently, this deal is unlike the previous, single-season extension:

The Colts did not reveal the length or financial terms of the agreement, but it is a multiyear deal.

This is truly great news. The Rose-Hulman campus and facilities really are, as Dungy says, ideal for the Colts' training camp. And the location helps build regional support for the team. That, and it's my alma mater, so I am, of course, biased...

Stadium wins, 108-36

Filed in SportsTags: Colts, Indiana, Indianapolis, NFL

Good news for the Colts. The Stadium funding bill passed, 108-36

After four months of sometimes angry debate, the General Assembly took a crucial step toward solidifying the city's NFL future Friday night by easily approving a financing plan for a new Colts stadium and expanded Indiana Convention Center.

Ground-breaking for the new, retractable-roof stadium is scheduled for August 1, with completion of the stadium scheduled for 2008. The convention center expansion is slated to begin at that time, with a projected completion of 2010.

Colts new stadium, artist renditionA lot of controversy - mostly local politics and questions of who should bear the tax burden for the new stadium - has surrounded this project, but in the end, getting this deal done - at almost any cost - is a long-term boon for both the Colts and the city of Indianapolis.