[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="610" caption="Blair White really impressed the coaches during last year's preseason finale."]following channels:[/caption] The Indianapolis Colts will play their final preseason game tonight against the Cincinnati Bengals at 7 PM ET. The game will be playing on NFL Network as well as the
Indianapolis feed: Indianapolis, IN: WNDY My23 Springfield, IL: WCFN My49 Evansville, IN: WEHT 25 (ABC) South Bend, IN: WBND 57 (ABC) Terre Haute, IN: WTHI 10 (CBS) Louisville, KY: WMYO My58 Cincinnati feed: Cincinnati, OH: WKRC 12 (CBS) Columbus, OH: WSYX ABC 6 Louisville, KY: WMYO My58 Dayton, OH: WKEF 22 (ABC) Lima, OH: WOHL (CBS) NFLN re-air: Fri 4:00 AM ETRadio: Colts: Sirius XM Radio 134, 1070 AM The Fan. Bengals: Sirius XM Radio 88, ESPN 1530. The game, being the final one, will be largely meaningless, as starters are often very limited, if not completely held out of the final game. However, a team cannot be successful without depth, so for Colts fans, there will be several things to look for. First, how will Kerry Collins do? Collins signed a large contract last week in order to be the Colts' primary backup to Peyton Manning, but has had a very limited amount of time to learn the Colts' playbook and become acclimated with the system, not to mention develop a rapport with his receivers. He figures to get a decent amount of playing time tonight, so pay attention to how the Colts' offense runs with him at the helm. It must be taken into account who he plays with, as many of the starters will likely be held out, but even so, watch Collins to gauge his comfort level with the offense. Second, can Curtis Painter prove that last week's second quarter wasn't a fluke? Painter has taken a lot of heat this preseason, and rightfully so. He was downright awful in the first two games. In the third game, Painter started slow, hurt by early pressure, dropped passes, and a few errant passes. In the second quarter however, Painter looked very good, keying in on Reggie Wayne for most of the key throws, but also targeting Pierre Garcon and third WR Chris Brooks on the two touchdown drives. While Painter actually looked like an NFL quarterback last Friday, especially in the two-minute offense, he must prove that it was not a fluke. I'd love to be encouraged by the game (and I was), but Painter needs to follow it up with another strong performance in order to keep his roster spot. He doesn't need two touchdown passes or a large amount of yards. He just needs to be able to move down the field, and be semi-accurate with his throws. Third, can Jerry Hughes get a sack? While Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis will likely miss the majority of the game, Hughes should once again play for large portions of the game. Personally, I think it would be ludicrous to cut him at this point in his career, but he really needs to show some improvement. Playing well against the Bengals would certainly help his case. Hughes will likely be playing against lower-tier guys, and should be looking to get a sack, or at least consistent pressure. Fourth, who will win the battle of the fourth running back? Javarris James, Darren Evans, and Chad Spann will all be trying to make the final cuts, and I seriously doubt that the Colts will keep more than four backs. So, the most likely scenario is that only one of the aforementioned three will be kept, with one of the other two possibly being practice squad material. Javarris James hasn't been particularly good so far in the preseason, but has the advantage of playing last year for the Colts, and showing a nose for the end zone. Darren Evans has run very well, with a tough running style that is often missing from the Colts. Chad Spann hasn't had much luck running the ball, but has the ability to return kicks/punts. In my opinion, Evans would be the best bet for the Colts, but James will probably be the one to stay. Spann's duties as return man look like they've been passed to David Gilreath and Joe Lefeged, and the hand-offs he's taken haven't warranted a roster spot. In the coming year, James' goal line carries will likely go to rookie standout Delone Carter, taking James' niche away from him. Because Evans has looked good so far, and James' is kind of being replaced, I think Evans should stay. But, the Colts like guys who know their system well, so who knows what will happen. Fifth, and finally, which unknown will step up and earn a roster spot? The Colts always have relatively unknown players step up and perform well during the season for them. In 2009, it was Blair White. But, in order to get there, the players need to step up and show that they're worthy of a roster spot, or at least a spot on the practice squad. This game against the Bengals is their last chance to show what they're worth. White did it last year, his seven catches for 132 yards in the final game earning him a spot on the practice squad. Players like Adrian Moten, Joe Lefeged, Chris Brooks, and David Gilreath have already caught the eyes of fans and coaches, will they continue to impress, or will somebody else step it up in their last chance to prove something?