Yannick Ngakoue already has an impact on both sides of the ball

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WESTFIELD, Ind. –While Matt Ryan brings his own energy to the Colts’ offense, another high-profile offseason addition provides plenty of juice on the other side of the ball.

  • defensive end Yannick Ngakoue once again showed remarkable energy during Thursday’s practice, and the drive he brought to Grand Park helped set the tone for the Colts’ defense.
  • “He brings an energy, a confidence – proven production year after year”, said head coach Frank Reich. “This guy is a playmaker. So that kind of leadership, it’s consistent. He brings us that consistent playmaker ability.”
  • However, Ngakoue isn’t just helping bolster the Colts’ defense. Left tackle Matt Pryor – who mainly faced Ngakoue in 11-on-11 drills – said the six-year-old veteran gave him a “game look” with every snap.
  • For Pryor, who is competing to be the Colts’ starting left tackle, facing Ngakoue — and his signature pass rush move — have already helped him hone in on some details.
  • “It will improve my technique” said Prior. “He’s really good with his hands. He’s a real hand technician. So being able to work my hands, do head movements, do fake shots, work on different hand placements – it really helps a lot.”

Quick shots from Thursday’s practice:

  • Ryan showed a good connection with wide receiver Parris Campbellwho had a number of catches – many of which were accurate and led to extra yards after the catch.
  • Cornerback Stephon Gilmore made a handful of plays, especially on individual drills, and looked very much like a veteran who earned berths in each of the last four Pro Bowls.
  • Ryan’s ability to quickly process pre- and post-snap information continues to be obvious and impressive, leading to plenty of crisp, clean seven-on-seven and 11-on-11 periods.
  • Ryan, rolling to his right, found tight butt Mo Alie-Cox for a spectacular dive; he also broadcast deep completion to wide receiver Ashton Dulin during individual work.
  • Assistant quarterback Nick Foles had a handful of notable pitches, including down completions for wide receiver Keke Coutee and tight end Jelani Woods.
  • Cornerback Kenny Moore II blew up a run game for 11-on-11 – although that should come as no surprise for a guy whose 102 tackles led all cornerbacks in 2021.

The Colts will hold a virtual tour on Friday that is not open to the public before welcoming fans for a 7 p.m. Saturday practice at Grand Park. Tickets for “Back Together Saturday” are not available.

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