Scouts Inc.: Who's on the Colts O-line?

July, 21, 2010
7/21/10
2:43
PM ET
Can Tony Ugoh be an effective guard for the Colts? And will newcomers Adam Terry, Andy Alleman and Jacques McClendon make contributions on the offensive line?

[+] EnlargeTony Ugoh
AP Photo/Darron CummingsThe Colts might be moving Tony Ugoh to inside guard.
Indianapolis’ offensive line isn’t that good. They don’t move bodies in the run game, they don't excel on the move in the Colts’ stretch-zone running game, and Peyton Manning's time management and ability to decipher coverage blows their true pass-blocking contributions way out of proportion. This is a group in flux.

President Bill Polian used a high draft pick on Ugoh to succeed Tarik Glenn as Manning’s blind-side protector. Ugoh was a raw, but very talented, prospect coming out of Arkansas who hasn’t worked out at left tackle. Now, there is talk of him moving inside to guard. I just don’t see it. Ugoh is a long-limbed, athletically-built specimen who needs to play in space as an edge-blocker. He plays too high and lacks strength. A move to the inside sounds like recipe for disaster, where heavier defensive tackles will get under his pads and push him all over the field.

The Colts want to be more physical up front, but still, I think Terry is the guy in this group who fits in best with what they do. He as a smart player who is more of a white-collar trench man rather than a real mauler. But he isn’t as nimble or quick as most want for the left tackle spot and isn’t a pile mover for the right side. But in Indianapolis, where Manning makes all those around him appear better than they are, he might be a real nice addition, even if it is only as the No. 3 offensive tackle on the depth chart.

Alleman is a journeyman guard. His lateral agility isn’t real good and double moves give him a tough time in protection. He also is not a great technician in either facet of blocking. He is a backup.

McClendon is a decent prospect, but adapting to this cerebral offense is very difficult on rookie linemen. One mental error while Manning is changing the protections might cause the franchise quarterback to get drilled by a pass-rusher. That isn’t to dismiss McClendon, but he would really have to impress to get an opportunity in 2010.

Scouts Inc. watches games, breaks down film and studies football from all angles for ESPN.com.

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