Coming into the season, the Indianapolis Colts seemingly were going to have a two-headed monster at the tight end position with two second-year players, Dwayne Allen and Coby Fleener, catching passes from the position. However, after a hip injury and subsequent surgery prematurely ended Allen’s 2013 NFL season after week one, Fleener is now the Colts’ primary, and possibly only real, pass-catching tight end.
Through four games in this season, though, Fleener has put up inconsistent numbers and has become hard to predict. Between weeks two and four, Fleener combined for nine receptions, 146 yards and two touchdowns to go along with 15 targets. However, between weeks one and three combined, Fleener had only three catches on three targets for just 20 yards and zero trips to the end zone.
With his production varying so greatly thus far in the season, one has to wonder which is going to become the norm as the season goes on or if he’s going to level out at all. Is Fleener going to continue to see a lot of targets one game, but not many at all the next? Is Fleener going to become a safety blanket for Andrew Luck, a guy the quarterback looks to when he needs a chunk of yardage or a first down? Or is Fleener going to become a non-factor moving forward?
The way I see it, I think weeks two and four when Fleener was productive are closer to the norm in terms of what we’ll see from him moving forward. The Colts have made it clear that they want to run a balance, hard-nosed offense, which often results in a lot of two tight end sets to help disguise the play-call. Because of that, Fleener is going to be on the floor quite often, which should mean that he’ll have a fair amount of targets coming his way.
Fleener obviously isn’t going to be a monster of a man like Jimmy Graham or a healthy Rob Gronkowski, but he definitely can be a solid option for Luck in the Colts offense. He hasn’t been consistent thus far, but I would expect that to change as part of the Indy’s balanced offense going forward.