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  1. #1
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    Article: Why Grigson Deserves the Blame

    Sorry guys, but this article is spot on:


    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1...rce=teamstream


    Why Ryan Grigson Deserves Blame for Indianapolis Colts' Recent Struggles
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    Tyler
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    Dec. 04, 2013
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    Ryan Grigson did a fantastic job turning the Indianapolis Colts from a 2-14 team in 2011 to an 11-5 playoff team in 2012, helping him earn the NFL Executive of the Year award.

    However, given how poorly this season has gone, Grigson deserves, at the very least, a good amount of the blame this season and, at the most, the majority of it.

    Things haven't exactly gone as planned for the Colts in 2013. Yes, the team is currently 8-4 and has essentially locked up the AFC South title, but there are a number of concerns for the Colts that could keep them from being a legitimate Super Bowl contender once the playoffs begin.

    Below is a look at what Grigson has done during the 2013 calender year, showing how his success from last year just hasn't translated to this season.



    Free Agency

    Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
    During the offseason, the Colts had a ton of cap room and a number of areas where they could have improved. Grigson and the front office brought in a ton of new faces, addressing a lot of those needs.

    It hasn't turned out well so far.

    Before the season, many were concerned about the big contracts of players like Erik Walden, LaRon Landry, Gosder Cherilus and others. But fans settled down after a bit, trusting that Grigson made the right decisions, and that he at least understood the areas in which the team needed help.

    Almost all of the players Grigson brought in as free agents haven't played well or have hardly played at all.

    The offensive line was a big concern, so the Colts brought in Cherilus and Donald Thomas. While Cherilus has played relatively well at right tackle, he certainly hasn't live up to his five-year, $35 million deal.

    Thomas went down for the year in Week 2, and it's certainly not fair to blame Grigson for his signing, mostly because Thomas is a good guard that was a big need. But at the time, it certainly was frustrating to see the Colts let players like Andy Levitre and Louis Vasquez go to other teams, considering how well each of them has played on their new teams.

    Jonathan Moore/Getty Images
    On defense, players like Walden, Landry and Greg Toler haven't contributed at levels fans were expecting. Toler and Landry had notable issues with durability before joining the Colts, which has been a problem once again in 2013, as the two have missed a combined nine games. For Walden, Pro Football Focus (subscription required) has him with a minus-5.6 overall grade.

    Perhaps the best signings were on the defensive line, with Ricky Jean-Francois and Aubrayo Franklin doing a solid job doing what they must to stop the run, and even to get to the quarterback in the case of Jean-Francois, as he has three sacks this season.

    Back on offense, Ahmad Bradshaw appeared to be a smart signing, giving him a relatively cheap one-year deal, and he played rather well when healthy. But an injury ended his season as well.

    Matt Hasselbeck's signing was a real head-scratcher for me. Some said that he was there to help Andrew Luck be more comfortable in the offense, but is a 38-year-old backup quarterback worth $7.25 million over two years?

    Colts 2013 Key Free Agent PFF Grades
    Offense Total Snaps Grade
    Gosder Cherilus 808 9.5
    Ahmad Bradshaw* 103 2.7
    Donald Thomas* 72 1.2
    Matt Hasselbeck 13 -0.3
    Stanley Havili 283 -2.0
    Darrius Heyward-Bey 561 -8.3
    Defense
    Ricky Jean-Francois 405 6.0
    Aubrayo Franklin 275 1.0
    LaRon Landry 537 -1.0
    Greg Toler 421 -3.8
    Erik Walden 655 -5.6
    Pro Football Focus (*=out for season)

    Lastly, I wanted to talk about perhaps the worst signing during Grigson's time as GM, and that's Darrius Heyward-Bey. It was supposed to be a low-risk, high-reward addition, but with how poorly DHB has played, he's hurt the offense significantly.

    According to PFF, Heyward-Bey has the second-highest drop rate in the NFL for receivers that have had at least 25 percent of the team's targets, dropping an estimated 22.86 percent of passes, or eight drops on 35 catchable balls.

    This alone is enough to upset a lot of fans, but then there has also been the issue with the team's 2013 draft picks.



    NFL Draft

    Al Bello/Getty Images
    After April, it looked like the Colts had made some smart picks. Considering how well the 2012 draft went, it was expected that Grigson would follow it up with another one.

    How much blame does Ryan Grigson deserve for the 2013 season?
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    It's been about the opposite.

    First-round pick Bjoern Werner has not made the transition to a 3-4 outside linebacker this season, during a season where the Colts really need another pass-rusher not named Robert Mathis. He's played in just nine games, grabbing 12 combined tackles and just 0.5 sacks.

    Without a second-round pick, the Colts added help on the offensive line in the third and fourth rounds with Hugh Thornton and Khaled Holmes.

    Thornton has seriously struggled trying to replace Thomas, registering a minus-14.8 grade with PFF, making him the second-lowest graded player on offense behind Mike McGlynn. Meanwhile, Holmes has yet to play a single snap, usually being a healthy inactive heading into each game.

    Montori Hughes hasn't played much either, but there's not much to criticize about him, at least for now. But the final three picks after him in John Boyett, Kerwynn Williams and Justice Cunningham aren't even on the final roster of even the practice squad, and you would have liked to see at least one of those picks work out.

    Colts 2013 Draft Pick PFF Grades
    Round Player On Active Roster? Snaps Grade
    1 Bjoern Werner Yes 212 -5.9
    3 Hugh Thornton Yes 743 -14.8
    4 Khaled Holmes Yes 0 0
    5 Montori Hughes Yes 29 2.0
    6 John Boyett No 0 0
    7 Kerwynn Williams No 0 0
    7 Justice Cunningham No 14 0.6
    Pro Football Focus (Offense/Defense only)

    Expectations were high for these rookies after the Colts drafted players like Luck, T.Y. Hilton, Coby Fleener, Dwayne Allen and Vick Ballard in 2012, but no one has made a seriously positive impact out of this draft class.

    I would say the Colts could look to turn things around with a big impact player in next year's draft, but without a first-round pick, those chances aren't very high, which brings me to my final point.



    The Trent Richardson Trade

    Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
    I didn't like it when it happened, and I certainly don't like it now. The trade for Trent Richardson might have been one of the bigger mistakes Grigson made over the past two years.

    Richardson has struggled, plain and simple, even going as far as losing the starting job to Donald Brown last week against the Tennessee Titans. In his 10 games with the Colts, Richardson has run for 306 yards and two touchdowns, averaging 2.8 yards per carry.

    Among running backs with at least 100 carries, Football Outsiders has Richardson as the 31st running back out of 35 players in terms of defense-adjusted value over average, or DVOA.

    Andy Lyons/Getty Images
    But it's not just Richardson's struggles that made this a bad trade. The loss of a first-round pick for next year could really hurt the development of this team. They have a number of needs, but the biggest one comes at offensive guard. The Colts could have grabbed a top-tier prospect at the position like Cyril Richardson out of Baylor or Gabe Jackson out of Mississippi State, but the odds of grabbing either of them in the second round are very low.

    The Colts brought in a player like Richardson to focus on winning a Super Bowl this season, but injuries and a game plan that refuses to adjust without those missing players will make it very hard for the Colts to make a very deep playoff run against teams like the Denver Broncos or New England Patriots.

    A win-now mentality is great, but when a team is as plagued with injuries as the Colts are, it's also important to focus on fixing the depth issues for the future.



    Conclusion

    Overall, it's been an incredibly rough season for Grigson, and he certainly needs to refocus for next season.

    Perhaps the best question about Grigson's situation was brought up by Brad Wells of Stampede Blue, who wondered if the reason for success last season was due to Tom Telesco, the former Vice President of Football Operations, who is now the General Manager of the San Diego Chargers.

    It's certainly not the only reason for the change over the past year, but it very well could be a big one.

    The Colts still have the playoffs to think about with an all but guaranteed division title this season, but there needs to be a long discussion about what they need to fix before the 2014 season if they want to have a chance at making a Super Bowl run with Luck and company.



    All contract information provided by Spotrac.com

    Follow Tyler on Twitter @TylerDBrooke

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  2. #2
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    Dude, please STFU already man. We get it, Colts are struggling.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Colts_4_life View Post
    Dude, please STFU already man. We get it, Colts are struggling.
    Excuse me, junior?

  4. #4
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    He said "please" lol.

  5. #5
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    I agree. Grigson has failed. I think the work he did in 2012 outweighs what he did this year though. He gave us a foundation. He gave us Freeman, Vontae, Butler, Hilton, Allen/Fleener, Ballard, etc...

    He didn't do a good enough job allocating the resources this offseason, but no reason to give up on him.

    <3
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheVicster View Post
    Excuse me, junior?
    The troll is back. I love how people will say anything they want online to anybody but would never have the balls to say it to their face.

  7. #7
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    While there is blame all around the team is 8-4 despite the injury riddled offense....and playoff bound. If anyone thought this team was going to the Super Bowl prior to the season without losing the aforementioned offensive players then they were nuts? So to be where they are right now is remarkable.

    Year 2 in a rebuild and despite the injuries and Pep the team is in good shape for the future despite all the gloom and doom. While there has been constant complaining about Free Agency most are so short sighted that they fail to see that in 2 short years the following come off their rookie contracts:

    Andrew Luck
    TY Hilton
    Dwayne Allen
    Coby Fleener
    Vic Ballard
    TRich
    Chapman

    They are going to demand much higher contracts and there needs to be money available to sign them. Luck alone will break the bank. So some of these deals were front loaded to protect against that.

    My only issue was Toler as he had an injury history which has popped up it's ugly head...thankfully he can be cut and 4.1 million will be available with little dead money. I would have preferred Cason over him.

    Walden's deal is similar as after next season his guaranteed money is off the books and he has played better than he is given credit for. Can you imagine if this team had signed Kruger like some wanted? He has been a monumental bust and a very well payed one. So count your blessings...

    Godser is a top RT who has moved to LT on some plays...he seems to get forgotten in all the *****ing?

    Thomas was considered a steal in Free Agency with his ability to play all 3 interior positions and at a high level. Unfortunately he got hurt in game 2 but he has no injury history like Toler.

    RJF makes a difference when in and if people can't see that then they are blind? Yes, he has been hurt but again like Thomas, doesn't have an injury history.

    Landry has had his injury problems and was a risky sign, no doubt. Some times risks need to be taken.

    Lastly, I have been a Colt's fan since my Dad plopped me in front of the tv to watch the 1970 Superbowl at 4 years old. I have seen more down years than up and can tell you that on this and other Colt's forums I have never seen as much negativity towards this team in my entire life watching them? It is ****ing sickening...
    Last edited by Wyld1; 12-05-2013 at 08:27 AM.
    If winning isn't everything, why do they keep score?

  8. #8
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    I just want to throw in the fact that our success last year is a lot to blame for what everyone thinks is failure last year.

    If we had went what everyone outside hardcore fans thought last year and only won 4-7 games instead of over achieving then, and even the beginning of this season we would be called a really nice rebuild with a little ways to go and great young talent in place and Grigson would be getting praise for taking chances on guys like Toler and Landry since you have to hit on some of those moves in a 3-5 year rebuild.

    On this article bashing guys like Walden and Godser...again looking at this of year 2 of at least a 3 year build...I realize we had no meat and potatoes guys. Walden isn't going to show up in the stats as a pro bowler, but just like I said to defend his signing he is there to disrupt and take on blocks, not get that game changing sack.

    Also as someone pointed out above the contracts were front loaded...the numbers looked big but the big chunks were coming out the first year or 2 and then the price was going down...so why does no one give Grigson credit for getting the impossible in a safe for the team and long term contract.

    Lets look at these "terrible" contracts:

    Landry we are looking at 11 something dead cap if we had decided to cut him this year...if he didn't work out after year one that number is cut in half next year to 6 and then again the next 2...this is probably the worst contract and the one I didn't personally like...I hoped he could stay healthy and provide an impact...but in this system it looks like a FS would have been best next to Bethea who would have gotten a position change to SS....Sadly it may be Bethea who isn't here next year and not Landry.

    Toler: After this year we have him for 2 years for 333k/year. A steal at triple the price even if he misses half the season. In what world is this risk a bad investment?

    Donald Thomas: any year after the 1st we can cut him for less than a million in dead cap

    Erik Walden: The first 2 years he will be here since next year it would cost us more to cut him than to pay him....but after that we are looking at 500k in year 3 and 250k in year 4 to cut him loose.

    I don't even want to justify attacking a 2 year (most likely a 1 year with him retiring) deal for a mentor like Hasselbeck who can help everyone on a young roster that is lacking veteran leadership. We should be applauding this pick up since very few vets in his position would take a job like this with almost 0 chance of playing time...he knew he was there to be a mentor and nothing more.

    DHB...I think we all are disappointed in this sign. However on a one year deal he was who we could get not who we wanted....it was a low risk high reward sign. People forget when they say this that there is a risk part. His issues are more from Reggie (plus Allen) going down than his actual play IMO...not justifying his drops and just lack of any production, just saying that if Reggie stays healthy, and TY's role expanded we would be looking at his 27 catches a lot different. We signed him for one year because grigson knew that he could flop...obviously Reggie wasn't in the plan anyone made because he has been Mr. Health. Again DHB has turned into a bad sign...but it was a calculated risk that is scrutinized mainly because one of the most healthy players in history went down plus a blooming star at TE. Reggie and Allen are playing and DHB's targets and drops don't matter since he is mainly a speedy decoy. Again not who we wanted, but who we could get when the dust settled and he had potential to turn a lack luster career around.

    Godser....he was a highly graded RT, we wanted a RT, you have to over pay for relatively young Tackles on the open market...He isn't a pro bowler, but he is probably our best lineman this year if not he is very close to AC. Overpayment is the name of the game in NFL FA...we just aren't used to it.

    Did I miss any? Aside from overpaying Godser and overlooking a guy like Rhodes (yea I'm pretty sure we all know why) and even maybe a Kenny Phillips....and I'm sure there were other guys out there in favor of Landry I don't see an issue with any of these. He had multiple gaping holes and attempted to fill them all to varying degrees...all while not mortgaging our future with huge guaranteed contracts on players that may have also failed.

    Why did he not mention something like Havili's impact on special teams as well as the offense?

    The draft...well I don't want to get into that now. I'll just say I would have taken about 4 WRs over Werner (who I do like) and you can't bash late picks. Why does everyone keep going all crazy because his late round picks are reaches that haven't panned out yet? You can consider guys like Freeman, McNary, and Adongo (depending on how their careers pan out) as what he is basically spending his $ on for late picks. He is bringing in guys to compete for roster spots with those late picks...and the late picks have not fared well.

    The TRich trade....I'll just say that last year everyone was crying about us giving up a 2nd for VD then it was completely worth it in the Denver game...there are highs and lows there. Let Richardson have some time and get some blocking before going crazy...and understand that he is breaking tackles and doing some things well...just that he is turning -1 into a 2-3 yard gain instead of turning 2-3 into 4-5 gains.


    One last thing if you are still with me....This isn't a complete defense of Grigson. I know he has made some bad choices, but everyone writing articles is going after the wrong ones....again if we had been a bottom 10 team like everyone thought we were last year we would be talked about as an up and coming team and hearing buzz words like "on the right track"....this team is being haunted by it's success..and I guess in some part it's unwillingness to call this rebuild what it is...a process.
    Last edited by matthollabak; 12-05-2013 at 12:05 PM.

  9. #9
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    I stopped reading after this....


    Thomas went down for the year in Week 2, and it's certainly not fair to blame Grigson for his signing, mostly because Thomas is a good guard that was a big need. But at the time, it certainly was frustrating to see the Colts let players like Andy Levitre and Louis Vasquez go to other teams, considering how well each of them has played on their new teams.

    #iubb

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jacquewho? View Post
    I stopped reading after this....
    If you read previous posts, My #1 target for the Oline was Vasquez, so I am bitter that the Colts didn't sign him.

    <3
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    I remember. And he was probably my #1 choice too, can't remember between him or Levitre.

    Donnie Avery has been doing decent in KC, you want him back too?

    #iubb

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by jacquewho? View Post
    I remember. And he was probably my #1 choice too, can't remember between him or Levitre.

    Donnie Avery has been doing decent in KC, you want him back too?
    Over DHB, yeah. But why are you comparing an elite interior lineman to Avery?

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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by sfgiants5518 View Post
    Over DHB, yeah. But why are you comparing an elite interior lineman to Avery?
    I'm not. I was comparing the situation to it.

    Everyone is imploding that our team is flat out awful, but you all are overlooking the fact that our offense has been destroyed over injuries. Put an inexperienced offensive coordinator in there too and you have recipe for disaster.

    Also, look how happy you were here...you even included three "!'s" in the thread title

    http://forums.prosportsdaily.com/sho...to-1-year-deal

    #iubb

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    I would be more upset over the Donald Thomas vs. Levitre/Vasquez signing if Thomas had been labeled as "injury-prone" throughout his career.

    #iubb

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by jacquewho? View Post
    I'm not. I was comparing the situation to it.

    Everyone is imploding that our team is flat out awful, but you all are overlooking the fact that our offense has been destroyed over injuries. Put an inexperienced offensive coordinator in there too and you have recipe for disaster.

    Also, look how happy you were here...you even included three "!'s" in the thread title

    http://forums.prosportsdaily.com/sho...to-1-year-deal
    I was happy bout the signing but bottom line is this is results oriented.

    <3
    "[He's] a really complete player... There's not really any weaknesses to his game." - Bill Belichick on Andrew Luck
    http://imgur.com/a/4UK1e <---- BEST 10-15 SECONDS EVER

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