After years and years of dominance, we can officially slap the dreaded “rebuilding” label on the Indianapolis Colts. Instead of trying to field a competitive squad in Andrew Luck’s rookie year, the team seems ready to dramatically reshape the roster, cutting ties with star tight end Dallas Clark and attempting to move Dwight Freeney.
It will be interesting to see how both players function without a horseshoe on their helmet. Dwight Freeney should fair well wherever he goes. Although 32 isn’t exactly young, he registered 8.5 sacks on a severely depleted defensive line last season. His Pro Bowl days might be past him, but his skill set should translate to success on another team. On the other hand, Dallas Clark will be a much more interesting player to watch. When paired with a healthy Manning, he proved time and again to be one of the league’s best playmakers at his position. His stats took a noticeable dip last season without number 18 taking snaps, but it’s hard to blame him considering how that offense was tailor-made to Manning. It’s hard to envision Clark as a player capable of rebounding into the league’s best.
As far as the Colts go, kudos to them for making tough decisions. While many of the names on the roster should inspire confidence amongst the Indianapolis faithful, the fact remains that many of their stars from yesteryear are shells of their former selves. Even if Luck (or potentially RGIII) bursts onto the scene to rally Indy into playoff contenders, they would serve as little more than fodder for better teams. Cut ties, take your bruises, and rebuild from accordingly. If there’s one thing that Colts have proven over the years, it’s that they know how to put talent on the field.