Projecting the Colts defensive starters

July, 1, 2014
Jul 1
2:30
PM ET
INDIANAPOLIS -- Consistency.

That’s what the Indianapolis Colts need out of their defense this season. They need more performances like they had against the Kansas City Chiefs in the regular season and less of the performances they had against St. Louis, Arizona and New England.

The Colts defense, which finished 20th in the league last season, continues to lag behind the offense. That has to change this season. The unit must close the gap between them and the offense.

We looked at the offensive starters Monday. Here’s a look at the projected defensive starters.

Defensive line:

Cory Redding, Art Jones, Ricky Jean Francois

Comment: Jones and his likely backup at tackle, Josh Chapman, should help improve a defense up the middle that finished 26th in the league in stopping the run last season.

Linebacker:

Bjoern Werner, Jerrell Freeman, D'Qwell Jackson, Erik Walden

Comment: Robert Mathis, the NFL’s sack leader last season, will eventually end up starting once he returns from his four-game suspension. Werner will have to hold down the position while Mathis is out.

Cornerback:

Vontae Davis, Greg Toler

Comment: Davis and Toler have the potential to be a successful tandem at cornerback. But that’s only if Davis doesn’t have lapses like he had last season and Toler can remain healthy.

Safety:

LaRon Landry, Mike Adams

Comment: Landry was a disappointment last season. He has to commit himself to being an all-around safety, not one more worried about making the big hit.

Mike Wells

ESPN Indianapolis Colts reporter

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