3 Colts whose stock has fallen since entering the new season

Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Mike Strachan (17) warms up Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021, before the regular season opener against the Seattle Seahawks at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.
Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Mike Strachan (17) warms up Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021, before the regular season opener against the Seattle Seahawks at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. /
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Although the Indianapolis Colts made a lot of moves this offseason and have high hopes for this season, some players have fallen off the hype train.

Training camp has brought a renewed energy to the Indianapolis Colts after a disappointing end to last season. New players, whether it be through free agency, trades, or the draft, have brought competition and spirit to the roster.

During this preparation period, normally there are a lot of movers and shakers across the team with players performing both above and below their expected level. The stars are producing as advertised with Matt Ryan leading the offense while Yannick Ngagkou and Stephon Gilmore help strengthen the defense. Now, the offseason has progressed into the preseason and the Colts just finished their first tune-up game against the Buffalo Bills.

While some players looked sharp and ready to go for the season, others faltered. There have been trends emerging from training camp both good and bad. While some players’ stocks continued to rise during the first game others continued their downfall.

Let’s take a look at 3 players wearing the horseshoe whose stock has fallen since the start of training camp.

3. Wide Receiver Mike Strachan

After being selected in the seventh round (229th overall) of the 2021 Draft, there was little pressure or importance put on Mike Strachan. If he popped off, great, if not, then there was very little risk in taking him that late in the draft. However, he started to stand out during training camp last season. And why not? With a 6-foot-5, 224-pound frame, Strachan stood out in the receiving core literally and figuratively. He made some flashy plays that put him on everyone’s radar last season.

Although he was a raw prospect and only played collegiate football at the Division II level with Charleston, he had a lot of people thinking of what he could become. Working in his favor was the fact that the rest of the receiving room wasn’t that much proven either. TY Hilton was the main staple and the Michael Pittman Jr. was highly touted along with Parris Campbell, who ended up being injured for the season.

Strachan still couldn’t crack the rotation, getting beat out by Ashton Dulin and Dezmon Patmon. He did appear in six games recording two receptions for 26 yards with the longest being 16 yards. Year two would be the season Strachan broke out. With TY Hilton gone and the rest of the receiving room wide open this was the season for him to make his mark with the Indianapolis Colts.

Well, not quite. He started his second year on the PUP list. This offseason he had a knee procedure that landed him on this list to start training camp. He was on the sidelines during camp but couldn’t actively participate. This meant that Strachan was missing out on important reps with essentially all new quarterbacks in Ryan and Nick Foles. The Colts need help at the receiving core and not being able to develop chemistry with the starting QB is going to set Strachan back.

Also working against him is the fact that the receiving room is so open. This gives UDFAs from this season and returning special teamers the opportunity to move up the depth chart. Patmon has looked good this training camp and several other UDFAs have had some spectacular catches including Michael Young Jr. This also doesn’t account for Keke Coutee and DeMichael Harris wanting bigger roles in the offense.

It was announced on Monday that Strachan had been removed from the PUP list, meaning he could return to practice with the team. After their first preseason game that showed the receiving room still needs some work, Strachan has the opportunity to improve his stock with the Indianapolis Colts. Until then, he will continue to fall as Indy develops other receivers or bring in a veteran presence.