Colts Sign Veteran WR to Practice Squad: Report

Frank Reich

Getty Head coach Frank Reich and the Indianapolis Colts signed a 25-year-old receiver to the practice squad on August 31.

The Indianapolis Colts released wide receiver Keke Coutee on August 30 prior to the cut deadline to get the roster down to 53 players. But the 25-year-old receiver will return to the organization.

ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported the Colts have signed Coutee to the team’s practice squad.

This will be the second straight season Coutee spends on the Indianapolis practice squad. He was on the Colts practice squad most of last year. Indianapolis promoted him to the active roster twice — for Week 7 against the San Francisco 49ers and Week 16 versus the Arizona Cardinals.

Both of those games were wins for the Colts. Coutee played 33 offensive snaps combined in those two contests. He made 1 catch on his lone target for 5 yards.

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Colts Bring Back Coutee on Practice Squad

The inexperienced Dezmon Patmon and Mike Strachan beat out Coutee for roster spots at wide receiver for the Colts. Indianapolis cut Coutee despite keeping six wide receivers on the 53-man roster on August 30.

The other four wideouts on the Colts roster to begin the season besides Patmon and Strachan are Michael Pittman Jr., Parris Campbell, Alec Pierce and Ashton Dulin.

Coutee didn’t have a target in Indianapolis’ preseason finale against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on August 27, but he did return 7 punts for the Colts in that game. He averaged 10.0 yards per return with his longest return being 17 yards.

Despite outcries from the national media about the inexperience the Colts have at wide receiver, Indianapolis appears comfortable with its receiving core. But bringing Coutee back on the practice squad gives the team some insurance.

Coutee has 84 catches and 946 receiving yards with 4 touchdowns in 25 career NFL games. In 2020, he posted 33 receptions for 400 yards.

Coming into training camp, those 400 receiving yards ranked second-most in a season for any Colts receiver behind only Pittman.

With his ability to also return punts, Coutee is a versatile player the Colts can utilize in multiple positions if injuries arise during the fall.

Colts Depth at Wide Receiver

Indianapolis may not have a lot of experience at receiver, but the team is probably pretty confident in its depth to begin the season.

Pittman is coming off his first 1,000-yard campaign while Campbell is entering a contract year. Campbell has struggled to stay healthy during his career, but if he remains on the field this season, he has the talent to be a No. 2 weapon.

Pierce is a rookie, but he also entered the 2022 season with high expectations. This summer, Pierce has been a popular choice to be ranked among the leaders in rookie receiving yards and a possible candidate for Offensive Rookie of the Year.

This offseason, Colts head coach Frank Reich has also talked about Dulin getting more opportunities on offense.

“I think we go into the season really thinking that we still want to maximize [Dulin’s] special teams play but counting on him contributing offensively and as far as number of plays, we’re already discussing that and mapping that out as far as how do we see that breakdown of offensive plays going,” said Reich to the media on August 28.

Indianapolis’ top four receivers aren’t the best in the league heading into 2022. But the team has a committee of wideouts, extending all the way to the practice squad, that it believes it can count on this season.

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