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Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis still adjusting to 3-4

Colts The Switch Football AP

There’s a confidence in Colts camp that pass-rushers Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis will make a smooth transition from 4-3 defensive ends to 3-4 outside linebackers.

But they might not be ready quite yet.

“It feels good,” Mathis told Phillip Wilson of the Indianapolis Star. “I wouldn’t say comfortable right now because it’s a whole different world. It feels pretty good because I’m learning what I’m doing now.”

Asking old dogs to learn new tricks always comes with some degree of risk. And when they’re as good at their existing tricks as Freeney and Mathis are (with 184 combined sacks), you wonder if it’s the best idea.

The Colts allowed a league-record 71.2 percent completions last year, so they’re looking to generate more pressure. That will keep Freeney and Mathis looking forward more often than dropping back, but that’s still part of the job description.

“Those guys are doing good,” inside linebacker Pat Angerer said. “They’ll do good anywhere. You put them on the field and those guys are unbelievable.”

That talent’s going to make them a matchup problem, but it will fascinating to watch the pair make the adjustment, after a combined 19 years with their hands in the dirt.

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11 Responses to “Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis still adjusting to 3-4”
  1. patriotinvasion says: Aug 8, 2012 12:51 PM

    Going to be odd seeing those 2 guys standing up. I’ll miss the battles Freeney had with Matt Light as a traditional 4-3 Tampa-2 Defense End.

  2. hulkhogansays says: Aug 8, 2012 1:11 PM

    The honorable thing for the Colts to do is ship both to contenders. They gave too much to waste their final years struggling with an overrated rookie at QB brother.

  3. dexterismyhero says: Aug 8, 2012 1:24 PM

    @hulkhogansays says:Aug 8, 2012 1:11 PM
    The honorable thing for the Colts to do is ship both to contenders. They gave too much to waste their final years struggling with an overrated rookie at QB brother.
    =================================
    Right. Hopefully there was some sarcasm there, if not, go find out who your ex is hosing now…..

  4. karlton2 says: Aug 8, 2012 1:43 PM

    @hulkhogansays

    Mathis signed a four year contract this offseason after becoming a free agent, so he apparently doesn’t share your level of concern about what the ‘right’ thing for the Colts to do is.

  5. peytonsneck18 says: Aug 8, 2012 2:09 PM

    Hulk isnt too sharp

  6. peytonsneck18 says: Aug 8, 2012 2:13 PM

    Luck isnt overated …u dont see him in a bunch of commercial like rg3…luck is humble n recently visited with sick riley kids n didnt charge them for autographs like another qb did

  7. therealbleedcoltsblue says: Aug 8, 2012 2:26 PM

    I hear its a modified 3-4 4-3…. not a pure 3-4 defense this year.

    That means Freeney and Mathis will be in position to have a hand down almost %50 of the time, and this new defense doesn’t take them totally out of their comfort zone.

    They and the defense will be fine and more than make up for Luck’s overratedness.

    LETS GO COLTS!

  8. hulkhogansays says: Aug 8, 2012 3:01 PM

    Like I said in another post, Luck isn’t in commercials and media because advertisers have determined Luck isn’t marketable. He is in a word, akward. RG3 is engaging, entertaining and talented on the field brother. The COMPLETE package. Face of Adidas Football because they KNOW his rare talent. Deal with it brother.

  9. prplpuzzetrz says: Aug 8, 2012 3:23 PM

    Agree, we will see how luck is on the field. Anything short of spectacular will be a major disappointment! He has been slated as the surest thing in the past 25 years!
    I hope for the sake of the entire league, he lives up to expectations.
    As far as his Brand? He is awkward and “goofy”, It would be interesting to see the shoe with his name on it ? He just comes across as doofy & uncoordinated. The jury is out!

  10. peytonsneck18 says: Aug 8, 2012 4:31 PM

    Short bus paging fake hulk

  11. madesian says: Aug 8, 2012 9:31 PM

    These guys are just good football players and it’s my experience that any good football player will do well wherever they line up at. The transition should be smoother than most think and it does help that they will already have a really good linebacker in Angerer to play alongside.

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