AFC South: Shane Andrus


Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky


The Colts made a couple of roster moves Wednesday. At least one more is coming -- perhaps in time for Thursday, which marks the start of their practice week in preparation for Monday night's game at Miami.

The team waived kicker Shane Andrus, who worked as a kickoff specialist in the season-opening win against Jacksonville, and linebacker Cody Glenn, who was inactive against the Jaguars.

Adam Vinatieri said Monday he envisioned ultimately taking back the kickoff duties, though he didn’t offer a hint that it would be soon.

One of the two open roster spots will be taken by Ed Johnson. The veteran defensive tackle was suspended by the league for Week 1 and the team’s roster exemption for him is up.

The second spot is yet to be filled.

Team president Bill Polian has indicated the team may look for a veteran wide receiver to help while Anthony Gonzalez (knee) is out. The team is only three deep at receiver without Gonzalez (Reggie Wayne, Austin Collie and Pierre Garcon).

If the Colts don't find a veteran they like, they could opt to promote Taj Smith or John Matthews from the practice squad.

UPDATE: Adam Schefter reported Tuesday evening that the Colts worked out three free agent veterans -- D.J. Hackett, David Patten, and Chad Jackson.

Colts: Cutdown analysis

September, 5, 2009
9/05/09
9:54
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky


Biggest surprise: Four undrafted rookies made it. Linebacker Ramon Humber, cornerback Jacob Lacey and interior offensive lineman Kyle DeVan have cause to celebrate and will surely be expected to make an impact on special teams if they make the game day 45. Kicker Shane Andrus could be insurance until Adam Vinatieri is fully fit after offseason hip surgery, or they could keep him as a kickoff guy. Fourth-round draft pick Terrance Taylor, expected to be part of the bulking up of the defensive line, was cut, as was second-year defensive end Marcus Howard. He was a fifth-round draft pick last year who appeared to have upside. But the team’s push to get bigger along the defensive line could have cost him his spot. Keyunta Dawson was moved from tackle to end in the changes.

No-brainers: The team spent a sixth-round pick on Curtis Painter and liked what it saw from him as he played more than anticipated in the preseason with Jim Sorgi hurt for much of the time. In a league starved for decent options as No. 2 quarterbacks it would have been difficult to have gotten him to the practice squad, so it kept him as a third quarterback on a team with as durable a starter as there is in Peyton Manning. Will injuries allow for such depth-long term?

What's next: Left tackle remains the big concern. Charlie Johnson ranks ahead of Tony Ugoh on the depth chart but could win the job back. It would be uncharacteristic for the team to bring someone in and insert him into the starting lineup at this point, but they have to at least wish an upgrade candidate in their scheme would present himself. Ugoh and Dan Federkeil currently rank as the backup tackles.

Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky



Lots of AFC South in Pete Prisco's review of his training camp travels.


Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts
  • Shane Andrus: place-kicker, realist. A look from Mike Chappell.
  • Jim Caldwell says starters' time in the preseason finale will be limited, says Mike Chappell. And by limited, I am sure he means nonexistent for a lot of guys.
  • John Oehser's ‘magnificent seven' include a reminder not to panic.
  • How high up the list of quarterback-receiver TD combinations can Peyton Manning and Reggie Wayne go? Oesher answers.
  • A comparison of the first two seasons of Anthony Gonzalez to those of Marvin Harrison and Reggie Wayne, from 18to88.com.
  • Phillip B. Wilson invites you to pick the final 13 guys who will make the roster.
Jacksonville Jaguars Tennessee Titans
  • David Climer wonders about the sliding scale used to judge Vince Young.
  • Keith Bulluck and Chris Johnson are in the middle of the craze that has players broadcasting from their computers, writes Teresa Walker. (Thanks to musiccitymiracles.com for pointing us to this link.)
  • Five things Jim Wyatt knows about the Titans. He likes Stephen Tulloch's fire and doesn't like the state of the return game.
  • Only seven days removed from the season opener, the Titans have to be limited against the Packers, writes Terry McCormick.
  • Wyatt was unimpressed with Dateline's piece on Steve McNair and I have to say I am with him.

Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky

INDIANAPOLIS -- It's been a gorgeous day in Indy and the Colts-Vikings game will unfold beneath an open roof and window at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Three pregame thoughts/questions:

1) Sage Rosenfels is starting for the Vikings against a team that is not playing any of its starting secondary. On the one hand, Minnesota fans should feel confident the candidate for the starting job will be able to complete some passes. On the other hand, take a look at the picture atop this post from last October and revisit, if you will, a game famous for the "Rosencopter fumble" in an appearance against the Colts.

While we are touching on the Indianapolis secondary, let's take note of where cornerback Dante Hughes lines up. Is he second team (and thus starting)? Third? I don't get the sense the team is big on him right now, but what does playing a lot in a Colts' preseason game mean for a non-starter? That they like you? That they don't? That they need film to decide? It's harder to tell with them than with a lot of other teams.

2) Roy Hall is already gone, and I think Pierre Garcon and Austin Collie are both in line for roles as contributors at third receiver. Here we get our first game-pressure looks at them with big expectations. Peyton Manning won't play long and Anthony Gonzalez won't play at all. We shouldn't read much into it if Manning throws to one a bunch and the other not at all or hardly to either or a lot to each. But provided he aims for them a couple of times, do they look poised and comfortable and is it clear they are getting to their spots or are there hints of any hesitation?

3) Is there a discernable difference on special teams? I had a chance to talk with new coach Ray Rychleski, a very interesting guy with great passion for his job. Will we be able to see a difference in his charges? And how does rookie Pat McAfee fare punting and holding for Shane Andrus, who's keeping Adam Vinatieri's seat warm?

Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky

Preseason depth charts don't often mean much. Most of the time they honor seniority and incumbents. But teams are obligated to put one out in advance of their preseason debut.

The Colts just sent out their press release in advance of Friday night's preseason debut against Minnesota, and one piece of the depth chart jumps out.

Charlie Johnson, just off the PUP list with a pectoral injury, is listed as the starting left tackle, with Tony Ugoh as the backup.

In his chat with the local media, Jim Caldwell confirmed Johnson is the starter.

"That's where we had slated for him to play, at left tackle, and he obviously is a guy that's played a number of different positions for us, but that's a key spot," Caldwell said. "What we'll probably do is have Tony actually bounce back and forth to both spots, maybe put him over at the right by Ryan Diem, behind Ryan Diem. He'll also get a little work at left as well ..."

"It was something we had, we were slated to do at the onset. Charlie got hurt, but we'll let the two of those guys battle it out and see how they do. Tony is not out of it by any stretch of the imagination. He's still got a chance to keep battling, and just like anything else, we're expecting him to take a step forward and play well."

I did a giant column on Ugoh not long ago. As much as the Colts defended him, Ugoh would not be in this competitive of a situation if they were happy with his work.

Said Johnson: "I just go where I am told. It's been this way for four years now. I come back they say, 'Go play here.' And I just go play."

Asked if left tackle was a step up, he said: "If it is, I've played there before, played some games there and I'm comfortable. But I'll go play and play to the best of my abilities."

Cornerback Marlin Jackson and Antonio Johnson also came off the PUP list Monday.

Other depth chart notes of note:

Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky

A look at new defensive coordinators, including the four in the AFC South, from Mike Wilkening.

Adrian Hasenmayer gives us his top rivalries right now. Colts-Patriots is No, 2, Titans-Steelers is No. 4.

Houston Texans

  • Owen Daniels has left OTAs because he's unhappy with the Texans' approach to contract negotiations, reports Meghan Manfull. Is this ideal? No. But there is plenty of time for the Texans to iron out contract situations with Daniels, DeMeco Ryans and Dunta Robinson. They've shown a desire and willingness to lock up key guys early (see Eric Winston). The team has the leverage with all three guys right now. But I don't expect the Texans will abuse it.
  • Daniels' decision is understandable, says Alan Burge.
  • Is Matt Schaub a poor man's Matt Hasselbeck? Lance Zierlein thinks so.

Indianapolis Colts

  • Owner Jim Irsay told the AP that Tom Moore and Howard Mudd will return, be paid as they were before and have whatever roles Jim Caldwell wants them to have. John Oehser breaks it down.
  • Jamey Richard and Fili Moala made sure their weddings and honeymoons lined up with the Colts' schedule, writes Mike Chappell.
  • Chappell takes questions, including one about how the defensive tackles will be sorted out.
  • Oehser shares comments from Bob Sanders and assesses the safety.
  • Tony Dungy's influence will linger, says Oehser.
  • The Colts re-signed kicker Shane Andrus, says Chappell.

Jacksonville Jaguars

Tennessee Titans

  • Jeff Fisher will be roasted to benefit a charity, says Gary Estwick.
  • Tennessee signed seventh-rounder Nick Schommer, writes Terry McCormick.

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