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Tuesday, January 31, 2023

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Colts’ year-end awards from 2022 season

The 2022 season can’t be too bad for the Indianapolis Colts, who made their way into the upcoming NFL Draft with the No. 4 overall pick.

While most of the campaign was a big disappointment, there were some bright spots. It was overwhelmed by a circus about a struggling offense and the coaching position, but there were moments of optimism.

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It is going to be a busy season for the organization looking to get back on track. That starts with finding a new head coach — a process that began almost immediately after the Week 18 loss to the Houston Texans.

You can follow along for the latest updates with the head coach search through our tracker.

The staff at Colts Wire pulled this together to bring you the 2022 year-end awards for the Colts:

Justin Casterline/Getty Images

Kevin Hickey: LB Zaire Franklin
Meghan Hall: LB Zaire Franklin
Cody Manning: LB Zaire Franklin

It was a unanimous vote of our employees. Franklin was one of the biggest surprises of the 2022 season as he made a big move. He continued his role as a captain and leader in the locker room while improving his game greatly. He broke the single-season franchise record for tackles (167), set by Shaquille Leonard in 2018.

Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin: WR Michael Pittman Jr.
Meghan: WR Michael Pittman Jr.
code: WR Michael Pittman Jr.

Not many options considering how badly the offense performed this season, but Pittman Jr. was about as stable as could be. He was one reception shy of being the young Colts player to reach 100 receptions in a season, but a lack of consistency at quarterback kept him from reaching his ceiling.

Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin: DT Grover Stewart
Meghan: DT Grover Stewart
code: dt deforest buckner

It’s hard to go wrong either way. Although Zaire Franklin and Stephen Gilmore would also qualify, Stewart and Buckner were the engines of the entire unit. Stewart developed into an elite run-stopping defensive tackle, while Buckner continued to play at a high level despite dealing with a few injuries throughout the season.

Robert Scheer – USA TODAY Sports

Kevin: LB Grant Steward
Meghan: K Chase McLaughlin
code: lb ej speed

All three players deserve this award. Steward was my pick because he was a consistent force on special teams, finishing with a team-high 11 tackles. McLaughlin was a monster, setting a new single-season franchise record for converted field goals of 50 or more yards. Meanwhile, Speed ​​led all Colts players in special teams snaps and finished third on the team with eight special teams tackles.

Stephen R. Silvani-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin: WR Paris Campbell
Meghan: WR Paris Campbell
code: WR Paris Campbell

it was easy. Few players deserve it more than Campbell, who set single-season career highs with 63 receptions and 623 yards. The inconsistency of the quarterback position made it difficult for Campbell to truly breakout, but he was a solid complementary piece in the passing game.

Jeffrey Baker – USA TODAY Sports

Kevin: DL Dayo Odeyingbo
Meghan: DL Dayo Odeyingbo
code: DL Dayo Odeyingbo

The second year near runner really hit his stride during the second half of the campaign. He finished the season with 5.0 sacks, 3.5 of which came in the final month of the season. He also posted 31 tackles (18 solo), five tackles for loss, and 11 quarterback hits.

Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin: S Rodney Thomas II
Meghan: S Rodney Thomas II
Kodi: S Rodney Thomas II

Another easy pick. The Colts have had some interesting rookie performances this season, but none more so than Thomas. The seventh-round pick was not expected to have a major impact, but he earned a starting role and led the team with four interceptions.

Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Kevin: QB Matt Ryan
Meghan: QB Matt Ryan
code: QB Matt Ryan

Not all of the offensive woes were caused by Ryan, but he certainly didn’t keep the offense above water. The veteran should give the Colts a viable option for the coming and next few seasons. Now, it is likely that he played his last game in a Colts uniform after just one campaign.

AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin

Kevin: bubba ventron
Meghan: bubba ventron
Kodi: bubba ventron

Although defensive coordinator Gus Bradley also deserves praise, Ventron’s special teams unit never quite flinched. He had clear command of the unit, and many were shocked when he was not interviewed for the role of interim head coach. Ventron’s Special Teams unit placed in the Top-10 for the third consecutive season.

Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Kevin: Jeff Saturday Recruitment
Meghan: Jeff Saturday Recruitment
Kodi: Jeff Saturday Recruitment

The unprecedented move of hiring in the middle of Saturday’s session during the 12-hour negotiation takes the cake. Jim Irsay made the incredibly irrational move of hiring Saturday instead of looking for viable candidates after Frank Reich was fired. What ensued was an eight-game stretch of pure embarrassment and failures at a historic level.


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