One of the deepest positions on this team is going to present General Manager Chris Ballard with some tough calls very soon. Hunt has been running with the first-team defense, especially on first and second downs, for the last few weeks. But Delaire’s been more effective. It’d be a stunner if the Colts were ready to move on from Tarell Basham this early, but it’s no secret the third-round pick from 2017 didn’t impress like they would’ve liked him to during the preseason. On the inside, Ridgeway put together a terrific preseason, and Stewart likely keeps a spot to add depth at the three-technique.
Beyond the solidified top three receivers – T.Y. Hilton, Ryan Grant and Chester Rogers – the rest of the room is very murky at this point. A costly injury to Brent late in camp muddied his status. The rest are in a heated competition for the final two spots. Thursday night will be the final case each can make to be on this roster come Monday morning.
The most intriguing member of this group is Reece Fountain, the fifth-round pick out of Northern Iowa last spring the offensive coaches had high hopes for. An injury-plagued training camp, one in which Fountain was routinely outshined by sixth-round pick Deon Cain, dimmed those hopes. He made one catch in the preseason, and to hear Reich tell it, is no lock to make the roster.
This is one of the toughest calls Ballard will make, because all three are deserving of a spot. Travis has the sort of skillset that presents matchup problems for a defense, and that’s what Reich and coordinator Nick Sirianni want. Daniels’ ability in pass-protection, plus in run-blocking, might be enough to separate him as well. He’s been running with the first-team of late, a clear indication that the coaches like what he brings to the table.