The heat is on in Indiana. In fact, many of the states in the union are mired in a near-nationwide heatwaves this July. For the Indianapolis Colts, this heat wave could have serious effects on their 2013 NFL training camp.
The Summer was a mild one in Indianapolis up until recently, but over the past week, temperatures and humidity have risen at a rapid pace. This week, the heat index around Indianapolis has climbed to near triple digits for several days in a row. For a team that plays indoors, practicing outdoors during a Summer heatwaves could have its detriments and its benefits.
The recently revamped collective bargaining agreement between the NFL owners and the Player’s Union helped players during training camp over the Summer, by cutting down on practice in pads. Of course, the NFL has made hydration a major point for players during Summer practices, especially since the training camp heat stroke death of former Minnesota Vikings offensive lineman Korey Stringer 2001. Still, preseason training camp is made even more difficult when the heat and humidity rises.
Playing out in the heat will also be helpful to an indoor team like the Colts, by giving them a taste of what to expect when the play outdoor games early in the season. This year, the Colts will avoid the early September away games, as their first two games of the season are at home against the Oakland Raiders and Miami Dolphins.
The Colts begin training camp in Anderson, Indiana on Sunday, July 27th. The heat is expected to break in Indiana this weekend for a bit, before raising back up next week. Training camp is always going to be a grind, regardless of the precautions taken. Still, the Colts will have to push through it safely, and they will be better for doing so.