The Colts added a couple of pieces to the secondary in free agency and might add more in the draft. What does this new secondary look like when it’s on the field?
The Colts clearly had a plan when free agency started. That plan was to improve the defensive side of the ball as much as possible. They started that by trading for DeForest Buckner and signing Sheldon Day. Then they moved onto the secondary.
In the secondary, they added two corners. Xavier Rhodes and T.J. Carrie are now members of the back seven in Indy. Rhodes is a former All-Pro but has recently played subpar football. Carrie is a reliable rotational player who can give some solid snaps at both inside and outside corner.
As far as what the rotation looks like in the fall, it will likely be Rock Ya-Sin and Rhodes on the outside with Kenny Moore starting at slot corner. Carrie will likely rotate with Ya-Sin and Rhodes as needed and will be out there in Dime sets as needed.
Signing Rhodes and Carrie adds to the depth of the corner room and also gives defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus some options. He can rotate out Ya-Sin if he gets burned like he did against the Broncos. He didn’t have that luxury last year because of poor depth.
Adding two corners also creates more competition at a premium position. Chris Ballard wants to build as much competition as he can at every position on the field. Adding two guys with the pedigree of Rhodes and Carrie definitely helps with that.
What this does for Marvell Tell early in his career is hard to say. Tell showed some flashes of good play late in the season after a horrid preseason. But depth is never a bad thing, especially at a premium position such as corner.
It remains to be seen if the Colts will draft a safety or two as well. Both Khari Willis and Malik Hooker played poorly late in the season last year. My guess is both will still be the starting safeties, but they certainly have been put on notice.