AFC Notes: Colts, Jaguars, Titans


Colts’ GM Chris Ballard says he would rather save cap space for the future than overpay a player in free agency.

“We’ve got good players out of free agency, and we’ve been successful,” Ballard said, via Jonathan X. Simmons of the Indianapolis Star. “We’re just not the biggest fans of right out the gate free agency where you’re paying B players A-plus money, which is gonna affect down the line. There’s a cost to that. Our players know we want to keep them. We’ve done a pretty good job so far of keeping the players we wanted to keep in-house. We feel like we have a really good. I know culture gets thrown around, but we do. I think we have a really good culture. It’s one of accountability. One where they care about each other, and one where they want to win and do special things.”


Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence said he’s been grateful to have fellow rookie RB Travis Etienne in Jacksonville given they spent their college careers together at Clemson. 

“It’s been awesome having Travis here,” Lawrence said, via John Shipley of Sports Illustrated. “Obviously we have known each other for three years now, and being able to hang out, you know, outside of here but also just have a guy in the building that I have played with for the past three years, it just, you know, adds a little bit of comfort coming somewhere new and we are just really excited to do something great in Jacksonville.”

Etienne expects his debut to be “very nerve-wracking” but thinks he’ll get back into the swing of things after taking his first hit. 

“I feel like my first game is going to be very nerve-racking and I’ll be filled with so many emotions,” Etienne said. “Nerves will be all over the place but I feel like after the ball is kicked off, I get my first hit, and first tackle when they hit me one time, I will be great.”

“So now I am just like kind of learning real receiver routes and having Trev here to go just do simple things as run routes outside and just kind of go over it by ourselves, [it] has really been great for me and really helped me just speed up that process,” Etienne said.


It appears that Titans’ TE Anthony Firkser will see more playing time in 2021 as he is currently competing with TE Geoff Swaim for the starting job. Firkser gives credit to former Titans’ tight ends Delanie Walker and Jonnu Smith for helping him get to this point.

“They were a huge influence in my career and my growth for sure,” Firkser said, via Jim Wyatt of “Just being around those guys, Delanie was a great asset in the passing game and he really excelled in that area. And Jonnu, being that all-around tight end, making big plays and being reliable. Using the time that I was around them, it made me a better player.”

Firkser notes that his mindset hasn’t changed since he entered the NFL and is still doing his best to improve even though the Titans are already expected to have an explosive offense this season.

“I am trying to stick to what I have been doing since I first started, and keep growing and learning every day each year,” Firkser said. “I just want to keep taking steps to improve, and really grow in areas where I have weaknesses. That’s kind of the mentality I’ve had since I entered the league. I just want to find ways to learn and grow and adapt my game. Mainly I just want to find ways to add value and help this team out. I have been focusing on my whole game, trying to get better in the run game as well as keep improving the pass game stuff. Just trying to build up more physically, put some more weight and strength on but still be able to move and run well so I can be an asset in the passing game and continue to produce in that area. Just continue to build my game and be as versatile as possible. We have a ton of weapons out there, and we can spread the ball around and get everyone touches. We just want to put as much pressure as we can on the defense.”

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