Ryan Kelly, the center for the Colts, appears revitalized and is performing at a Pro Bowl caliber once more.

Ryan Kelly, the center for the Colts, appears revitalized and is performing at a Pro Bowl caliber once more.


Thanks to a new coaching staff, a growing family, and evident perseverance through personal tragedy, Colts center Ryan Kelly is blocking as well as he has ever done.


After a poor season in 2022, starting center for the Indianapolis Colts Ryan Kelly looks to have returned to his previous Pro Bowl form thus far in the early going.

Not only does PFF rank Kelly as an elite pass blocker, but ESPN’s Analytics agrees, ranking the 30-year-old center for the Colts sixth among all interior offensive linemen (not just centers) in terms of pass block win percentage (97 percent).
(It should be mentioned, though, that’s in limited situations, as Kelly missed two starts earlier in the season due to a concussion.
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He’s also blocking as well as anyone on the inside in both areas of the field, as evidenced by ESPN Analytics, which ranks his 82 percent run block win rate as the second best.

For a veteran center who was once a star player and the subject of trade rumors back in March of this year, it has been an incredible comeback.

What specifically might have happened then?

Kelly and his wife Emma lost their newborn daughter to heart failure in December 2021, a tragic event.
Kelly may have suffered from unintentional psychological and emotional damage as a result of the tragic loss of a young child, and that is understandable given the gravity of the situation compared to football.

Sometimes, the struggles you face mentally can have an impact on your physical health as well.
Kelly’s heart and attention may not have been fully focused on the game because he and his wife were still dealing with the aftermath of a personal tragedy off the field.
This is understandable given the tragic circumstances surrounding the incident.

Perhaps he was just inadvertently going through the motions last year.

I mean, it’s there, but not really all the way there.

Even when you’re mentally and emotionally well, playing the NFL can still be challenging.

Additional justification for the Colts’ “Kicking the Stigma” campaign’s vital importance in eradicating the stigma attached to seeking help for mental health issues.

Given their faith, conviction, more time, and each other as emotional support systems, Kelly, his wife Emma, and their growing family—which now includes new twin boys—have been able to recover somewhat and heal mentally, even though they will always cherish the special memory of their lost newborn daughter.


Tony Sparano Jr., the team’s up-and-coming young offensive line coach, is one member of the new Indianapolis coaching staff that may have helped Kelly feel rejuvenated during his eight-year NFL career. bringing much-needed fresh energy, core values, inspirational sayings, and blocking techniques into the Colts building.


Maybe Kelly is simply physically healthier overall, concussions included.


Kelly is playing maybe as well as he has ever played, even after being named an NFL 2nd-Team All-Pro at his position following his stellar 2020 campaign.
However, there are many factors to take into account in this situation.


Kelly, a former first-round pick of the Indianapolis Colts in 2016 and the team captain, is currently one of the main forces behind the Colts’ offensive line unit’s ranking by PFF as a Top 5 unit.
It’s encouraging to see Kelly look like himself again and appear content, beyond just football.


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