Acquiring Dennis Kelly is a huge boost for the Colts offensive line


(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

The Indianapolis Colts recently signed veteran offensive lineman Dennis Kelly.

Kelly returns to Hoosier State, where he spent his college days with the Purdue Boilermakers.

He’ll boost Indy’s offensive line, which has been blowing hot and cold in recent years.

Colts offensive linemen excelled in the run-blocking game — they helped running back Jonathan Taylor rack up a league-leading 1,811 rushing yards in 2021.

On the other hand, PFF ranked Indy’s offensive line 30th in pass blocking efficiency last season.

Kelly should help with that.

Kelly’s addition also bolsters competition for the final spot on the offensive lineman roster among Jordan Murray, Brandon Kemp and undrafted rookie free agent Ryan Van Demark.

Let’s take a closer look at what Kelly brings to the Colts table.

He brings a lot of veteran experience and versatility to the Indy offensive line

He’s entering his 11th season in the NFL — his experience should rub off on the Colts’ young offensive linemen, especially Austrian rookie tackle Bernhard Raimann.

Not only that, but Kelly has proven his versatility over the years – he can play any tackle position for the Colts.

After Indy released veteran Eric Fisher in the offseason, left tackle became a top priority for Colts general manager Chris Ballard.

On that note, the acquisition of Kelly and the drafting of Raimann should put an end to any rumors of a possible signing of Duane Brown.

Although Raimann has plenty of upside, he’s only been an offensive lineman for two years since his days with the Central Michigan Chippewas.

Although he has the potential to start at left tackle, Colts head coach Frank Reich can opt for Kelly or Matt Pryor to do the honors if he feels Raimann needs more experience.

A Colts offensive line with Dennis Kelly, Quenton Nelson, Ryan Kelly, Danny Pinter and Braden Smith looks good on paper.

However, if Reich chooses to launch Raimann, Kelly provides much-needed depth at the left tackle.

Kelly can also play behind Smith at right tackle.

Either way, Indy’s revamped O line should help Taylor pick up where he left off last season.

They should also help protect new Colts quarterback Matt Ryan.

The Colts offensive line fell short of expectations in the pass protection game last season.

With Kelly and rookie Rainmann bolstering Indy’s O line, they should make some progress in that department.

Dennis Kelly is a solid addition to the horseshoe

The Colts offensive line looks terrific with the inclusion of veteran Kelly.

The 32-year-old still has plenty of gas in his tank.

He will bring much-needed depth to the Colts’ O line over the next two years.

Kelly’s return to Hoosier State not only bolsters the Colts’ O line, but also Indy’s chances of returning to the playoffs in 2022.

Kelly wearing the Horseshoe and playing against his former team, the Tennessee Titans, is another interesting story next season.




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