Just how good will the Indianapolis Colts defense be in 2017? – Indianapolis Colts News

Just how good will the Indianapolis Colts defense be in 2017? – Indianapolis Colts News

Newly acquired defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins has hyped the Indianapolis Colts defense up ever since joining the team in April. In an interview with NFL Network earlier this offseason, Hankins said he believes the Colts have the best defense in the AFC. He was not joking either. It is bold for any team to claim they have the best defense in the conference, but it is especially bold coming from a team that ranked 30th in team defense last season. So is Johnathan Hankins right? Do the Colts have the potential to be one of the best defenses in the league in 2017?

New York Giants defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins (95) during the second quarter against the Cleveland Browns. Photo By: Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports

Ever since the “defensive minded” Chuck Pagano took over as head coach of the Colts in 2012, the Colts defense has only finished in the top half of the league once. Not to mention out of the five worst defensive seasons in team history, three of them have been under Pagano. In Pagano’s defense, he has not had the most talented players to work with. Former general manager Ryan Grigson consistently signed aging players, which led to slow and unathletic defenses. Pagano will no longer have that excuse though.

New general manager Chris Ballard recognized how pitiful the Colts defense has been in recent years and spent the offseason overhauling the defense. In addition to Johnathan Hankins, Ballard added an additional 12 defensive players; seven of which could be starting as early as week one. The Colts spent six of their eight draft picks on the defensive side of the ball; including first round pick Malik…

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