REPORT DATES: July 25th (rookies), July 28th (veterans)
SITE: Anderson University, Anderson, IN
CAMP OBJECTIVES: The torch will be officially passed when the Colts return to Anderson for their 2012 camp, as the splendid 13-year Peyton Manning era is now over and the Andrew Luck period about to commence. Preparing the cerebral No. 1 overall pick of this past draft for his NFL debut as the team's new starting quarterback is just one of a multitude of assignments that first-year head coach Chuck Pagano and his staff will have on their plate as Indianapolis begins a full-scale rebuilding operation, however. The Colts are switching to a 3-4 defense in which pass-rush artists Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis will now be deployed as stand-up linebackers, while a worthwhile nose tackle must be found among the likes of old regime holdover Antonio Johnson, free-agent addition Brandon McKinney and rookie Josh Chapman (5th Round, Alabama). There are questions abound at one cornerback spot as well, with lightly tested third-year man Kevin Thomas, 2011 draftee Chris Rucker and veteran newcomers Cassius Vaughn and Justin King all competing for a starting nod. The offensive line will also have a whole new look, with ex-Raider Samson Satele replacing longtime center Jeff Saturday and a pair of onetime Eagles, guard Mike McGlynn and tackle Winston Justice, the projected starters on the right side. A few other rookies will have a chance to contribute right away on offense, with Luck's Stanford teammate Coby Fleener (2nd Round) and third-round selection Dwayne Allen the top two prospects at tight end and fifth-rounder Vick Ballard vying with second-year pro Delone Carter for the backup running back job behind expected No. 1 option Donald Brown.
PRESEASON SCHEDULE (All Times Eastern):
Aug. 12 - vs. St. Louis, 1:30 p.m. Aug. 19 - at Pittsburgh, 8 p.m. Aug. 25 - at Washington, 4 p.m. Aug. 30 - vs. Cincinnati, 7 p.m.