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USA Today Sports Media Group
USA Today Sports Media Group
Kevin Hickey

Colts’ 53-man roster prediction after preseason Week 2

The Indianapolis Colts have one more preseason game to get through before the roster is to be cut down to 53 players ahead of the 2022 campaign.

The deadline for the next round of roster cuts is Tuesday at 4:00 p.m. ET. The Colts must reduce their roster to 80 players, which means they must release or waive four players from their current roster. We made our predictions of those four moves.

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On the Tuesday following the preseason finale against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Colts will cut their roster down to 53 players.

With one more preseason game remaining, here’s an updated prediction of what the 53-man roster will look like:

Quarterback (2)

AP Photo/Zach Bolinger

1. Matt Ryan
2. Nick Foles

Sam Ehlinger is making life difficult for the decision-makers, but it still may not be enough to convince the Colts to burn a roster spot on a third quarterback.

Running Back (4)

AP Photo/Adrian Kraus

1. Jonathan Taylor
2. Nyheim Hines
3. Phillip Lindsay
4. Ty’Son Williams

Lindsay still seems primed to take over as the RB3 behind Taylor and Hines. The fourth spot is still very much up for grabs between Williams, Deon Jackosn and D’vonte Price.

Wide Receiver (6)

AP Photo/AJ Mast

1. Michael Pittman Jr.
2. Parris Campbell
3. Alec Pierce
4. Ashton Dulin
5. Dezmon Patmon
6. Mike Strachan

We’re back at keeping six wide receivers on the roster. This is partly due to the unfortunate news that rookie tight end Andrew Ogletree tore his ACL and will miss the remainder of the season. With only three tight ends staying, it opens an extra spot. Following their dominant performances, Patmon and Strachan are currently the leaders for the final spots in the wide receiver room.

Tight End (3)

AP Photo/Michael Conroy

1. Mo Alie-Cox
2. Kylen Granson
3. Jelani Woods

With Ogletree out for the year, the only question that remains is the pecking order. Does Woods eventually overtake Granson?

Offensive Line (9)

AP Photo/Zach Bolinger

1. Matt Pryor
2. Quenton Nelson

3. Ryan Kelly
4. Danny Pinter
5. Braden Smith
6. Bernhard Raimann
7. Will Fries
8. Dennis Kelly
9. Wesley French

The starting offensive line for the Colts is essentially intact with Pryor as the left tackle. Dennis Kelly hasn’t appeared in a preseason game yet, but he’s still the best option at backup right tackle once he returns from his knee procedure. Ryan Van Demark hasn’t instilled much confidence that he can hold the backup role and may need more time to develop. French makes the cut because of his versatility to play guard and center.

Defensive Line (10)

AP Photo/Michael Conroy

1. Yannick Ngakoue
2. Kwity Paye
3. DeForest Buckner
4. Grover Stewart
5. Tyquan Lewis
6. Dayo Odeyinbgo
7. Ben Banogu
8. Eric Johnson II
9. Curtis Brooks
10. Chris Williams

This may be one too many but until we get an actual update on Williams’ status, the Colts will roll with 10. Given the positional flexibility of Odeyingbo and Lewis, the Colts could probably get away with carrying nine. The depth on the interior is a concern while Ifeadi Odenigbo has played well enough to warrant considering for a roster spot. However, he just misses the cut here. Williams is kept around because he’s still the second-best fit for the one-technique behind Grover Stewart.

Linebacker (6)

AP Photo/Zach Bolinger

1. Shaquille Leonard
2. Bobby Okereke
3. Zaire Franklin
4. E.J. Speed
5. Sterling Weatherford
6. Jojo Domann

The first four spots are locked in so we are just waiting to see who wins the final two spots in the room. It will come down to special teams play as both Weatherford and Domann have flashed upside on defense. The other two undrafted rookies in Forrest Rhyne and James Skalski also have made compelling cases while Brandon King appears to be on his way out.

Cornerback (6)

Syndication: The Indianapolis Star

1. Stephon Gilmore
2. Kenny Moore II
3. Brandon Facyson
4. Isaiah Rodgers
5. Tony Brown
6. Anthony Chelsey

I have no idea how to sift through the competition for a sixth cornerback. It’s between three or four players. Chesley gets the nod here, but it could easily be Marvell Tell III or Rodney Thomas II as well.

Safety (4)

AP Photo/Zach Bolinger

1. Julian Blackmon
2. Nick Cross
3. Rodney McLeod
4. Armani Watts

Can undrafted rookie Trevor Denbow take the final spot from Watts, who has been dealing with an injury? That’s something we’re looking for in the final week of training camp.

Specialists (3)

AP Photo/Joshua Bessex

1. Rodrigo Blankenship
2. Rigoberto Sanchez
3. Luke Rhodes

Blankenship is still in the lead for the starting kicker role.


Justin Casterline/Getty Images

Offense (24)

Pos First Second Third Fourth+
QB Matt Ryan Nick Foles
RB Jonathan Taylor Nyheim Hines Phillip Lindsay Ty’Son Williams
WR Michael Pittman Jr. Alec Pierce Dezmon Patmon
WR Parris Campbell Ashton Dulin Mike Strachan
TE Mo Alie-Cox Kylen Granson Jelani Woods
LT Matt Pryor Bernhard Raimann
LG Quenton Nelson Will Fries
C Ryan Kelly
RG Danny Pinter Wesley French
RT Braden Smith Dennis Kelly

Defense (26)

Pos. First Second Third
DE Yannick Ngakoue Ben Banogu
DT DeForest Buckner Dayo Odeyinbgo Curtis Brooks
DT Grover Stewart Chris Williams Eric Johnson II
DE Kwity Paye Tyquan Lewis
LB Shaquille Leonard Zaire Franklin Sterling Weatherford
LB Bobby Okereke E.J. Speed Jojo Domann
CB Stephon Gilmore Brandon Facyson Tony Brown
CB Kenny Moore II Isaiah Rodgers Anthony Chesley
FS Julian Blackmon Rodney McLeod
SS Nick Cross Armani Watts

Specialists (3)

Pos. Player
K Rodrigo Blankenship
P Rigoberto Sanchez
LS Luke Rhodes


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