Thursday, February 3, 2011
Hits and misses: Colts edition
By Paul Kuharsky ESPN.com
Building toward the conclusion of our series looking back at instances where you can hear these three words you love so much from me…
I was wrong:
“Special teams might have more resources: In his second season coaching Indy's special teams, Ray Rychleski should be better able to get his message through. He's surely tortured by the onside kick fiasco at the start of the third quarter of the Super Bowl loss. Now he's got some more dangerous return possibilities in Brandon James, Devin Moore and Ray Fisher, and a couple of rookie linebackers who could be coverage studs in Pat Angerer and Kavell Conner.” (Preseason.) That’s not as bad as it sounds, honestly. Injuries to front liners sapped depth, and the guys Rychleski was supposed to have wound up playing offense and defense while he had a lot of guys off the street.
“[Melvin Bullitt] is a giant loss for a defense that’s been struggling. Bullitt is usually a steady and reliable player and it’ll be tough to replace him. (Oct. 5.) He certainly was a big loss, but he wasn’t the one that broke the team’s back as I projected he might be.
I was fortunate:
“The [offensive line] talent pool now includes [Jacques] McClendon and tackle Adam Terry, but there was no overhaul. Pass protection combined with [Peyton] Manning’s ability to get the ball out quick meant few sacks, but the team needs to run better for balance. Short-yardage bugaboos have been a factor in season-ending losses the past two years.” (Preseason.) Here we are a season later and the Colts face the same issues.”