Players We Watched: OT George Foster

During the 2012 preseason there will be certain players that we’ll go back and specifically watch for during the games, trying to get a feel for who will help this team in 2012, and who needs to go home. Prior to the first preseason game against St. Louis, I shared eight players that I would be watching during the game, all eight of which will be reviewed extensively on Colts Authority, along with several other players. The previously reviewed players are listed here: 

Jerrell Freeman

George Foster is the most experience player on the Colts’ offensive line, along with Winston Justice, with seven years of NFL service under his belt. Earlier in his career he was a left tackle for the Denver Broncos, but he’s been unable to land a starting job over the last three years. Actually, he’s struggled finding ANY kind of NFL job, but seems to have found a place in Indy that might be a good fit. 

Foster is currently the backup left tackle, backing up the Colts’ first round pick from 2011, Anthony Castonzo. Castonzo missed time last season with injuries (a bad ankle hampered him for most of the season), and it would surprise nobody if he missed time in 2012, leaving Foster to man the spot. 

But, is he up to the task? 

Before halftime, Foster came in with the rest of the second team, for the last series of the half. 

On that series, Foster was much less than impressive. On the couple running plays, Foster’s blocks were weak, including one where a move left Foster grasping at air. Foster did get out and ran well in front of Ballard on a draw, keeping a cornerback out of the play. He got help from Ballard on the sole pass play of the series, but didn’t allow the defender to get through. On the series, Foster responded to the snap slowly a few times, moving a fraction of a second after the rest of the line.

In the initial series in the second half, Foster seemed to settle down a little bit. A big part of that was due to coaching, as the offense ran a lot of quick screens and short passes, not allowing the line to have much time to hold off any pass rushers. Foster did his part on those plays however, something that should be noted. 

The next series, however, started to look back to the form exhibited on the first drive. On the first play, a run play, Foster got pushed back into the backfield right away, causing a three yard loss. On the second play, Foster tried to cut block his man, but failed, and Ballard had to run sideways instead of up the field, leading to just a one yard gain. On third down, Foster was the beneficiary of a chip from TE Dominique Jones, slowing down the DE. Foster knocked him over, and tried to pancake him, but missed horribly. 

After the reverse by T.Y. Hilton, the Colts ran the ball again with Ballard, and Foster’s bad block led to the defensive lineman getting a clean tackle on Ballard just a yard off the line of scrimmage. For the rest of the series, Foster was mediocre at best, but didn’t have any glaring misses. 

Overall, Foster played a pretty good amount, along with the rest of the second team. Unfortunately, he looked like a liability on the line (and this was the second team). His run blocking was atrocious, and his pass blocking was serviceable at times, but you can tell that an experienced DE would make him look foolish. He was receiving help from the TE or RB at times, but these were mostly three step drops. If you have to have your RB or TE stay in to block, it really takes a weapon away. 

If Castonzo gets hurt, Foster is not a serviceable backup. I’d rather have a guy like Linkenbach backing him up. 

Again, comment or tweet me (@ColtsAuth_Kyle) for more information or suggestions!

Kyle J. Rodriguez

About Kyle J. Rodriguez

A film and numbers guru, Kyle writes about the NFL and the Indianapolis Colts for Bleacher Report, Draft Mecca and The Football Educator, and is a co-founder and associate editor of Colts Authority. Kyle also is a high school sports reporter for the MLive Media Group in Michigan, covering high school sports across the state.