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30 at 30: Number 19, Tight End Dallas Clark

July 3rd, 2013 at 11:53 AM
By Chuck Chapman

Colts 101 is counting down the 30 most influential members of the Indianapolis Colts organization in anticipation of the Colts' 30th season in Indianapolis. Here's who we've profiled so far:

30. Andrew Luck
29. Ken Dilger
28. Tarik Glenn
27. Antoine Bethea
26. Bill Tobin
25. Eugene Daniel
24. Mike Vanderjagt
23. Ron Meyer
22. Jeff Herrod
21. Duane Bickett
20. Ted Marchibroda

'Dallas Clark' photo (c) 2010, Jeffrey Beall - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/At number 19 is the greatest tight end to play in Indianapolis, Dallas Clark. Clark was the Colts' first round selection (24th overall) in the 2003 NFL Draft out of Iowa. He came in and had an immediate impact, starting 10 games as a rookie. Before he was finished in Indy, his name would be etched in the Colts' record books.

Despite being flanked by Marvin Harrison and Reggie Wayne, Clark quickly became one of Peyton Manning's favorite targets. His ability to make the tough catch underneath and to stretch the middle of the field opened up the outside for Harrison and Wayne.

Clark played nine seasons in Indianapolis before moving on to Tampa Bay last season. He finished his Colts' career among the top 10 in franchise history in games played (10th), receiving yards (8th), receiving touchdowns (6th) and receptions (4th). Only Hall of Famer Raymond Berry and future Canton inductees Marvin Harrison and Reggie Wayne caught more passes with the Colts.

Injuries have plagued Clark since 2010, limiting his productivity and hastening his departure from Indianapolis.

Clark faced a tall order competing with the legacies of the great John Mackey, arguably the best TE to ever play, as well as predecessors like Marcus Pollard and Ken Dilger. Number 44 re-established the bar for the position during his Colts career. Current Colts tight ends, Coby Fleener and Dwayne Allen, have an even greater task to meet Clark's productivity as a Colt.

Tags: Coby Fleener, Dallas Clark, Dwayne Allen, Football, Indianapolis, Indianapolis Colts, NFL

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