COMMENTARY | The Indianapolis Colts signed another player to a reserve/future contract on Jan. 30, securing the services of wide receiver Jeremy Kelley and once again checking out a prospect with experience in arena football.
Kelley is a 6-foot-6, 230-pound receiver out of Maine was assigned to the Jacksonville Sharks of the Arena Football League on Nov. 13, 2012, after playing for the AFL's Utah Blaze in 2012 and spending 2011 with the CFL's Hamilton Tiger-Cats.
"Reaching the NFL is a goal of every player in our league, and Jeremy has accomplished that goal," Sharks head coach Les Moss said through a press release. "He is a player with the tools to succeed at the next level, and we wish him the best of luck in Indianapolis."
The 2013 AFL season begins in March, so Kelley hasn't suited up for the Sharks yet, but in eight games with the Blaze, he caught 19 passes for 231 yards and seven touchdowns. On defense, he recorded five tackles, two assists and a fumble recovery.
This isn't the first time that the Colts have taken a peek at the Arena Football League for talent. Earlier this month, the team turned to the indoor game to sign linebacker Jake Killeen from the AFL's San Antonio Talons. In 2012, two other former Talons were signed by the Colts: Ty Nsekhe and Jerry Brown.
Nsekhe ended up playing in two games for the St. Louis Rams as an offensive tackle in 2012. Brown went to the Dallas Cowboys and was killed in December in a wreck involving a vehicle driven by Cowboys teammate Josh Brent, who has been charged with intoxication manslaughter.
A few things about Kelley stand out to me.
First is his size. He'll be among the tallest Colts on the roster. Only Anthony Castonzo, Clifton Geathers, Joe Reitz and Bradley Sowell--all of whom are listed at 6-foot-7--would top him. Geathers is a defensive end. The other three are offensive linemen.
Among Colts wide receivers, Kelley will be a giant among men. Reggie Wayne is listed at 6-foot-0 and 198 pounds, setting the bar on size at that position. Comparable to Kelley's size is Coby Fleener who, at 6-foot-6 and 252 pounds, plays tight end.
The second aspect of Kelley that stands out is his athleticism. At his 2010 Pro Day, he ran a 4.57-second 40-yard-dash and a 3.83-second 20-yard shuttle, and he registered a 42-inch vertical leap. That means that his head was 10 feet off the ground. Wow.
Finally, Kelley's versatility is intriguing. Beyond his ability to play wide receiver, Kelley was also listed as a tight end in Hamilton, and he played defensive end at West Seneca (N.Y.) High School, where he also played basketball.
Size, athleticism, and versatility. I like the signing. He has the potential to contribute to the Colts in 2013 on offense, special teams or, in a pinch, on defense. I'm looking forward to seeing what he can do in blue and white.
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