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Colt’s notebook: Bear’s pass rush has got Philip Rivers’ attention


INDIANAPOLIS The threat is real, and Philip Rivers knows it.

As the Colts Indianapolis prepare for Sunday’s visit to Soldier Field and the meeting with the Chicago Bears, Rivers is unaware of the presence of outside linebackers Khalil Mack and Robert Quinn and tackles Akiem Hicks. They are combined for 6 pockets and 11 quarterback pressures in three games. Hicks, a massive 6-4, 347-pounder leads the way with 3.5 bags and seven presses.

Those guys, whatever you want to call it, they’re circled, they’ve got a star, Rivers said during a Zoom conference on Wednesday. You know they have a lot of guys who can destroy the game.

This defense is a great group to say the least, so it will be quite a challenge for us on Sunday.

That defense is led by coordinator Chuck Pagano, who led the Colts to four playoff appearances and one trip to the AFC Championship game as head coach from 2012-17.

They don’t do a ton, Rivers said of Paganos’ defense. (It’s) different from last week.

New York Jets Coordinator Gregg Williams changed things, shifted his staff.

Never know who’s flashing, never know what version of Cover-2 you’re going to get with Gregg Williams, Rivers said. Not only is it going to be a Rolodex of defense this week, but in everything they do, it’s hard to tell the difference in what they’re going to do.

They are doing very well and they are very solid. You don’t see many things where you go. Well, who has this gap and who covers this zone? Everything is tight. It will be quite a challenge.

The Bears pass rush numbers to be a good test of Colts pass protection.

Indy ranks 5th in the NFL with the fewest bags allowed per pass, having only yielded three, tied for third least after three weeks. One bag occurred when Rivers was chased out of the pocket and failed to reach the line of scrimmage, while another came when backup Jacoby Brissett was knocked down on a run-pass option in Jacksonville.

D-lineman added

The Colts signed rookie defensive end RonDell Carter to the active roster of the Dallas exhibition squad. The 6-3, 269-pound Carter was one of the Cowboys’ most coveted, unattracted entry-level signers. They reportedly guaranteed $ 145,000 from his contract.

Frank Reich said Chris Ballard and his staff have been watching Carter, who had 23.5 sacks and 48 tackles for loss in 44 games at James Madison. He was the 2019 Colonial Athletic Associations Defensive Player of the Year.

He’s a man who really suits us, Reich said. Suits the style of play, suits the kind of person, the character of the player, is very strong and suits the style of the player that suits our defense.

D-line and o-line you never have enough depth. We felt it was the right time to do it.

Hogan back, Kelly gone

The team signed former Marian University standout Krishawn Hogan to the exhibition squad and released quarterback Chad Kelly.

Hogan has spent parts of three seasons (2017-19) with the Colts and was considered a necessary addition as Parris Campbell was placed on the injured reserve list and out indefinitely with a knee injury and rookie Michael Pittman Jr. who underwent legal proceedings. Monday to address a compartment syndrome in his right leg.

Reich confirmed that Campbell underwent proceedings on Wednesday to repair damage to two ligaments in his left knee.

Burton, Day returns to practice

Tight end Trey Burton (calf) and defensive tackle Sheldon Day (knee) returned on a limited basis to practice on Wednesday. Each remains on IR, but with an indication to return. The team has a 21-day window to activate them.

I look forward to getting them out again this week and evaluating them, Reich said.

You can follow Mike Chappell on Twitter at @ mrjoshua1971.

Listen to the Colts Blue Zone Podcast for weekly coverage and analysis of the Indianapolis Colts.

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