Indianapolis rolls into Philly with a 1-1 record. After a convincing defeat of the Washington Redskins in our nation’s capital, they want to continue their stellar defense and ability to move the ball and pick up first downs on offense. Their win last week was highlighted by rookie Darius Leonard’s 18 tackle, one FF, and one sack performance, en route to a game where they allowed ONE trip to the RedZone.
While the injury-laden Eagles hope to escape their early mediocrity by welcoming their promising young star quarterback back into the lineup, today’s game has all the makings of an offensive shootout, with great offensive minds in Frank Reich, and Doug Pederson calling plays for young star Quarterbacks Carson Wentz and Andrew Luck. These are the players I think could make an impact and should be watched with a close eye.
The Estonian defensive lineman was a bright stop in week 1, recording two sacks, he also recorded a sack in week 2 which was marked out by a penalty, look for him to try to overpower Eagle’s lineman early and force Wentz to move in the pocket his first game back from an ACL tear.
Turay is an intriguing prospect, and athletic speed rusher that packs power in an impressive frame, he has elite tools but is raw and needs some seasoned action to reach his potential, look for #57 on passing downs and look for him to create pressure as well.
The rookie out of Ole Miss will be seeing a lot of action this week with Marlon Mack sidelined with an injury again. A tough, between the tackles runner, the colts will look to use him to set up a play action game over the middle of the field. If he runs well, the colts will be in good shape in the passing game.
Another rookie runner, a change of pace type back that the Colts love to use in many ways: pre-Snap motion, screens, handing it off. The Swiss army knife of the backfield, Hines will look to continue his momentum from his very determined week 1 touchdown. Hines will be a catalyst in the Colts offense today and his success could be a measure of overall success.
A teammate of Carson Wentz at North Dakota St., Haeg looks to protect Andrew Luck. The offensive tackles in his third season looked to have veteran poise this week when Eagles edge rusher Brandon Graham spat trash talk in his direction. Haeg should be able to keep Luck clean in week 3.
Ryan Hewitt/ Erik Swoope
Erik Swoope was activated off the practice squad this week in the wake of Jack Doyle’s hip Injury. But Ryan Hewitt seems to be more like Doyle in play style. It will be interesting to see who the Colts choose to fill the hole Doyle’s injury has left.
Pierre Desir and Kenny Moore have battled through week 1 and week 2 to see who the number one CB is (it’s certainly not Quincy Wilson) and in the absence of Wilson, they will both have to step up. Desir seems certain to match up with the Eagles number one wide receiver this week, Nelson Agholor, we will see if he can continue his surprisingly good play and overmatch a battered Eagle receiving corps.
The rookie standout safety has been quiet in his sophomore campaign, although he looks primed to have a big game as he will most likely be primed with handling the tough task of matching up with Zach Ertz, Wentz’s most reliable pass catcher and his favorite player to target. Look for Hooker to try to be physical with Ertz and possibly intercept a pass.
Matthias Farley will be an important part of the Colts ‘defense today, Farley’s impact at the back end of the defense is unspoken of and I think we should shed light on it. Farley’s skill at the back end allows coach Eberflus to drop down Clayton Geathers in the box and become more athletic while still having to reliable safeties in Farley and the aforementioned Hooker. Look for the Colts sub package and watch Farley fly to the ball play after play.
Injuries to Denico Autry and Hassan Ridgeway may force a very talented player into the lineup. Autry burst onto the scene last week with a sack but either seemed to lose steam or start to take on double teams as he didn’t force much pressure after that. Ward is a physical specimen on the defensive line and according to Zach Martin of the Dallas Cowboys, could be an all-pro 3-technique in the NFL.
Be ready for these ten players to make an impact on today’s game and in the future as well.