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Clark becoming a vital cog to Colts’ offense

Dallas Clark, Indianapolis Colts tight end

Tight end Dallas Clark’s role to the Indianapolis Colts could be compared to a component of a car engine.  In other words, let’s say for the sake of the conversation that Clark was a water pump in the engine (the engine in this case being the Colts’ offense).  If the water pump is not utilized properly, other parts of the engine have to over-compensate for the water pump’s lack of production.

Fortunately for Clark and the Colts, the driver of the car that runs the engine is quarterback Peyton Manning and the mechanic is Colts offensive coordinator Tom Moore.  Clark has never been to a Pro Bowl in his career, nor has he even caught 40 balls in any given season.  Despite that, he is considered an integral part of what makes the Colts’ offense go.  This year so far, he has seemed to eclipse the numbers that he has had at this stage of the season during his 5-year career.

His numbers: 13 receptions, 175 yards, with two touchdowns.  Prorate those numbers and you have: 65/875/10 TD’s.  Very Antonio Gates-like, in my estimation.  Yet, for all of you who are Clark fans, don’t expect these numbers to hold up.  What I mean by that is while Clark is producing, there are other receivers in the Colts who figure in the mix as well.  But that doesn’t lessen Clark’s value to the team at all.

He’s athletic enough to get off the line cleanly, his speed is fast enough to outrun most linebackers and some secondary members, obviouslt big enough to block when the need to arises and can play the slot when the offense calls for it.  so as you can see, he is a multi-facted TE.  Colts head coach Tony Dungy has compared Clark’s progression as a receiver to that of Colts wide receiver Reggie Wayne, who like Clark, produced solid numbers his first three seasons before getting his first 1,000 yard season in 2004.

While the Colts’ defense has improved leaps and bounds over last season, it is the offense that defines the Colts.  And Clark in his role as a safety valve has been a big part of that offense’s success.  And there’s no reason that Clark cannot have a “career year” stat-wise and for the Colts not to reap the benefits. 

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