- Paul Kuharsky, ESPN Staff Writer
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No position in the AFC South may be revamped more than the Indianapolis Colts' offensive line.
The Colts now know who will be sculpting that group: Joe Gilbert
The team’s assistant offensive line coach last year has been promoted to replace Harold Goodwin, who went to Arizona to serve as offensive coordinator for Bruce Arians.
“We are extremely excited about Joe coaching our offensive line,” Colts coach Chuck Pagano said in a statement. “He did a great job last year. Joe brings great energy and passion to that room, and stresses fundamentals and technique. He expects a lot from his players and will continue to develop that unit into one of the best in the NFL.”
The Colts ran for 104.4 rushing yards per game in 2012, the highest average for the team since 2007. The line also provided time for quarterback Andrew Luck to throw for the most passing yards (4,374), attempts (627) and 300-yard passing games (six) by a rookie in NFL history. But Luck was hit entirely too often and did a lot of damage as a passer on the move or as he was being hit.
I think left tackle Anthony Castonzo is an improving building block.
But no one else on that line is locked in. While center Samson Satele got a three-year, $10.8 million contract from the Colts last year, but the team fared as well with A.Q. Shipley filling in when Satele was hurt. Satele is due under $3 million next year with no remaining guarantees.
K.C. Joyner of ESPN.com pointed out during the Colts' season-ending playoff loss in Baltimore that Satele has a habit of bobbing his head and tipping the snap.
Gilbert needs his meeting room to be stocked with some new options, who will keep the valuable quarterback upright and help create additional run room for a team that will move to some West Coast concepts under new coordinator Pep Hamilton.