The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Pro Sports

May 29, 2014

Luck, offense could move forward in second year under Pep

INDIANAPOLIS — There's a high bar to clear when it comes to offensive production in Indianapolis.

Colts fans have been spoiled by years of Peyton Manning shredding defensive backfields throughout the NFL, and many are anxious to see Andrew Luck unleashed in similar fashion.

That's at the heart of the "power running game" debate that remains a surefire tactic to cause a Twitter meltdown among the team's fanbase.

So when second-year offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton recently told ESPN.com that Indianapolis would have a "score-first" mentality this year, it caused some ears to perk up.

"We're going to do whatever we need to do to score one more point than our opponent," Hamilton told ESPN reporter Mike Wells.

That's not exactly a groundbreaking stance, and it doesn't represent a philosophical shift.

Despite the criticism of Hamilton's scheme a year ago, the 2013 Colts scored more points (391 compared to 357) and ranked higher among NFL offenses (14th from 18th) than they did under previous coordinator Bruce Arians.

"Is there any other mentality?" left tackle Anthony Castonzo said when asked about the score-first approach. "We want to score points. That's basically all there is."

And Indianapolis remains likely to pass often in order to make that happen.

One of the most common gripes during Hamilton's first year was that the offense didn't put the ball in the air frequently enough. But while Luck's passing attempts dropped from 627 as a rookie to 570 last year, his efficiency sky-rocketed.

The franchise quarterback raised his completion percentage by more than six points (54.1-60.2), equaled his 23 touchdown passes and cut his interception total in half (18-9).

Third-year wide receiver Griff Whalen has been with Luck since his days at Stanford, and he still sees improvement every day.

Text Only
Pro Sports
  • SPT - HB0819 - McAfee art George Bremer: McAfee can't wait for another shot at miracle finish Two days later, Pat McAfee still was kicking himself for missing a 64-yard field goal that would have provided an even more improbable finish to Saturday's 27-26 preseason loss against the New York Giants.

    August 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0818 - Griff Whalen art Rogers, Whalen heating up WR conversation Da'Rick Rogers and Griff Whalen are competing so hard for the fifth WR spot, the Colts might be convinced to keep six.

    August 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • WEB Colts art 8-17 Giants rally past Colts in preseason home opener Pat McAfee truly believes he should have made a game-winning field goal for the Indianapolis Colts on Saturday night. Never mind that the punter's attempt came from 64 yards out — a distance that would have equaled the NFL record set by Matt Prater last year. McAfee was focused only on the 27-26 loss against the New York Giants and how his right foot could have changed it.

    August 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0816 - Colts art Colts still in evaluation mode against Giants

    Many eyes will be turned toward Jonotthan Harrison tonight when the Indianapolis Colts host the New York Giants in their second preseason game. The undrafted free agent out of the University of Florida figures to be the starting center following Khaled Holmes' sprained ankle in the opener against the New York Jets.

    August 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0814 - Colts Camp - 130 Colts end eventful camp on light note

    Chuck Pagano threw his team a little curveball Wednesday to close out the 2014 training camp, providing a light-hearted finish to a three-week stretch at Anderson University that often tested the team's mettle.

    August 13, 2014 2 Photos

  • Contract's up, but AU confident Colts will return AU president James Edwards believes the school soon will begin working on a new deal with the Colts.

    August 13, 2014

  • SPT - HB0813 - Colts Camp - Luck Watch - 058.JPG Colts Quick Hits: Aug. 13

    News and notes from Colts training camp at Anderson University

    August 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0813 - Colts Camp - Kerr - 032 Colts rookie Kerr not satisfied, not yet As an undrafted free agent rookie out of Delaware, Colts nose tackle Zach Kerr came into training camp knowing he had to prove himself worthy of a spot on the Indianapolis roster.

    August 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0813 - Colts Camp - Wayne - 126 Wayne making most of every moment in comeback

    Reggie Wayne had a surprise visitor during his media session Tuesday at Anderson University. And Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano just couldn't resist asking his wide receiver a few questions.

    August 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT-HB0813-ColtsCamp-Bradshaw-068.jpg Bradshaw ready to test neck

    Ahmad Bradshaw isn't certain whether he'll make his preseason debut Saturday against his former team, the New York Giants. But the veteran running back firmly believes he will be ready to roll when the regular season opens Sept. 7 at the defending AFC champion Denver Broncos.

    August 12, 2014 1 Photo