The Indianapolis Colts’ offensive line has been turning heads in recent weeks as the Colts defeated the Texans and moved to first place in the AFC South and 5-2 on the season.
The Colts’ Quenton Nelson has been making weekly ranks. With a run blocking rating of 85 and a pass block rating of 78, he’s opening holes for Marlon Mack to run through and being a consistent force on an offensive line that’s dominating the trenches. In 430 snaps, he’s only allowed 1 sack, 8 pressures, and 1 hit on the year.
Braden Smith is another run blocker with a rating of 72 on the season. Smith is the right tackle in an offense that looks to be run first but proved they can win through the air last week against Houston. Smith has been a consistent force on the line this season with only 1 sack, 1 hit, and 13 pressures on the season so far.
The Colts made it a point to go out and get their offensive line right ever since the Ryan Grigson era ended which ushered in current General Manager, Chris Ballard. The team also decided to focus more on running the ball rather than their pass-heavy offense – mostly due to their poor defense the past decade. They also went draft heavy and made home-run picks such as Quenton Nelson, Marlon Mack, Braden Smith and more recently Rock Ya-SIn and Khari Willis.
Second-year free agent, Zach Pascal, was also a signing which has paid off for the Colts so far in 2019. Pascal was signed by the Redskins as an undrafted free agent and then was waived by the Titans at the beginning of the 2018 season. Last week, Pascal helped the Colts take the win through the air as he caught 6 of his 7 targets for 106 yards and two touchdowns. His 17.67 yards per catch topped the NFL last week as he’s starting to become a reliable target for this offense and Jacoby Brissett.
The Indianapolis Colts are heading towards a playoff-bound season led by their offensive line and young talent on both sides of the ball.