Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The new kid

The Colts signed a third punter — Adam Crossett P Missouri (6021, 220). He came to the Tigers as a kicker/punter, but didn’t do so well from placements (15/24 of field goals and 41/43 on extra points) and was replaced by the more accurate Jeff Wolfert. He did somewhat better as a punter — averaging 40.34 gross with 53 of 173 in the opponents’ 20 — despite having to put up with a lot of poor snaps and so-so blocking. While it’s possible he could develop into an NFL punter, I think his real value, at least for now, is as a kickoff specialist. As a senior at Mizzou, he averaged almost exactly five yards better than Wolfert.

It’ll be interesting to watch him in camp, but considering the Colts’ luck with kickoff specialists in past — look at Daves Kimball and Rayner — I wouldn’t hold my breath.

• Troubled JJ Milan is back in the fold to fight for a pass-rush specialist. I was pretty sure he was cooked when they gave Ben Ishola his number, but he’s back. And he’s No. 73.

• Speaking of numbers, it’s a tradition for me to root for whoever the Colts give my old high school number, 46. It’s usually some scrub — who’s the last 46 you remember being any good? I have to go back to sometime starting CB James Burroughs (1982-84). This year, it’s tight end Zac Herold. He has his work cut out for him to make the team with Dallas Clark, Jacob Tamme, Tom Santi and Gijon Robinson (do NOT count out Gijon) ahead of him, but he’s my guy this year. Go, Zac!

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