Talking Colts Team Options: 2012 1st Round Picks Part II


Earlier, we noted that the Indianapolis Colts had some decisions to make regarding their 2012 1st round picks and their corresponding 2016 team options. As a recap, as part of the recently implemented CBA, all teams now have a 5th-year option for their former 1st round picks. Per Joel Corry of CBS Sportsline:

"“All deals for draft choices are four years under the rookie wage scale. Teams have an option for a fifth year with first-round picks. The option must be exercised after the third year of the deal, with a May 3 deadline.”"

At this point, the Colts will assuredly decline Trent Richardson‘s option in what would appear to be a no-brainer decision (if he doesn’t get released before that point), yet definitely pick up Andrew Luck‘s 2016 team-option if a long-term mega-contract can’t be worked out between the two sides before then.

While the number for Luck’s 5th-year team option in 2016 was originally projected to be around $16.12 million,’s Albert Breer now has an official number that’s pretty much in-line with earlier projections:

It’s a relative bargain for the Colts, and it’s pretty much a foregone conclusion that it will be exercised before May 3rd, unless the Colts will try to lock up Luck earlier to a lucrative long-term contract. The $16.155 million pales in comparison to the $24-25 million annually that Luck is projected to command on his next contract according to NFL experts like ESPN’s Adam Schefter:

That contract, whenever it is reached, is expected to effectively make Andrew Luck the highest paid quarterback in the NFL and rightfully so. With the position held at such a premium, and with Luck’s established greatness already at such a young age, it’s well deserved too given today’s NFL marketplace.

In the meantime, the Colts can potentially use the “significant savings” until 2016 to surround Luck with better talent for a Super Bowl push, possibly by using a significant chunk of their roughly $40 million in cap space this offseason. It should help make for an interesting offseason, that much is for sure.

Jan 18, 2015; Foxborough, MA, USA; Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano (left) greets quarterback Andrew Luck (12) after a touchdown against the New England Patriots in the second quarter in the AFC Championship Game at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports