Dominic Rhodes survived a bad fumble Sunday. Other than that, I have trouble finding any negatives about his return to the Indianapolis Colts, who brought him back on Dec. 7 with a $25,000 transfer fee to the UFL where he played for the Florida Tuskers this season.
He has averaged 4.6 yards on 37 carries in three games. More importantly, I think his reappearance in the locker room gave some teammates a boost.
I believe Bill Polian drafts guys who fit his system and the Colts put a pretty solid emphasis on character. Then, knowing there is solid veteran leadership in place starting with Peyton Manning, they figure the personality of the position groups take care of itself, evolving within the team’s building.
Still, Rhodes is a different guy and I believe his presence has a positive effect. Many of his teammates light up a bit when they talk about him.
Left tackle Charlie Johnson: “There is just some kind of energy with Dom that he brings every week. Every play he goes all out all the time. It’s fun to see guys like that, he’s just really having fun. The way he’s been in and out of the league, I think it’s made him really appreciate his time here and it’s fun to be around.”
Tight end Jacob Tamme: “He’s got a personality that’s unmatched; he brings a fire and a fun-loving attitude. And we’ve been having fun playing the last four weeks. He’s definitely been a fresh face and it’s great to have him back.”
Center Jeff Saturday: “Dom is fantastic. That guy has so much fun, he loves to laugh and have a good time, brings just a different attitude. He and Joe Addai and Donald Brown, all complement each other so well. You’ve got different styles of runners and they all get in there and fight and none of them complain about their carries.”
Rhodes enjoyed playing the UFL, because he was still playing. A guy who once could have been a Super Bowl MVP didn’t mind life in the minor leagues at all.
“It’s a kid’s game and that’s how I play it, I love this game,” he said. “This game has meant a lot to me in my life, it’s taken me out of a lot of situations and brought me to a lot of great situations.
In my life I put it very high, I put my teammates very high and I treat them like brothers. If that’s what I bring to the locker room and they like it, I love it.”