Projecting the Colts initial 53-man roster for the 2023 NFL season

Now that the preseason is over, here’s a projection of what the Indianapolis Colts 53-man roster will look like by Tuesday, the NFL’s cut day.
NFL Combine
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Tight End (4)

Roster Locks: Kylen Granson, Jelani Woods, Drew Ogletree, Will Mallory
Practice Squad: Nick Eubanks
Cuts: Mo Alie-Cox, Pharoh Brown, Micheal Jacobson, Ricky Seals-Jones

Maybe this is a bold take on my part, but it appears that Mo Alie-Cox might be finished in Indianapolis. It’s not because he is washed up but because there are so many players and talent that typically you see the veteran either get traded or cut before the season starts. I think Ballard tries to find a trade partner but if one is not found, Alie-Cox will most likely be let go. Granson and Woods are the leaders of the youth movement. Ogletree is coming off a knee injury and it’s doubtful Will Mallory would make it through waivers and onto the practice squad.

Offensive Line (8)

Roster Locks: Bernhard Raimann, Quenton Nelson, Ryan Kelly, Will Fries, Braden Smith, Blake Freeland, Danny Pinter, Carter O’Donnell
Practice Squad: Emil Ekiyor, Arlington Hambright, Wesley French
Cuts: Dakoda Shepley, Dan Skipper, Matthew Vanderslice

I think eight linemen here is a bit lighter than Ballard would like but this again seems to be an area that we might find some late veteran additions, especially on the interior of the line. The backups got thrown around against the Buffalo Bills but did show improvement as the preseason went on.

Late round selection Jake Witt is on IR and the Pinter injury in the finale puts some spots in flux. Look for the Colts to continue to grow guys like French and Ekiyor for depth in the season. While eight might be light (based on Ballard’s history) they can keep some extra bodies on practice squad to supplement.