On Thursday, the Indianapolis Colts extended the qualifying offer to restricted free agent tight end Jack Doyle:
If Doyle signs an offer sheet with another team, the Colts get the “first right of refusal” to match.
However, given the low $1.671M tender offered to Doyle, the Colts are not entitled to draft pick compensation–should Indianapolis opt to not match another team’s offer sheet:
"“If he has received a “qualifying offer” (a salary tender predetermined by the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the league and its players) from his old club. He can negotiate with any club through April 24. If the Restricted Free Agent signs an offer sheet with a new club, his old club can match the offer and retain him because the qualifying offer entitles it to a “right of first refusal” on any offer sheet the player signs. If the old club does not match the offer, it may receive draft choice compensation depending on the amount of its qualifying offer.”"
The 4th-year tight end was incredibly valuable to the Colts, catching 12 passes for 72 receiving yards and a receiving touchdown.
However, that doesn’t tell the entire story, as Doyle was often called upon to block. The former Cathedral High School standout was frequently deployed as the offense’s H-back or as a 2nd/ 3rd tight end in power formations.
Originally claimed off waivers by the Colts in September of 2013, Doyle has been a valuable role player for the Colts offense with his ability to both catch and block–performing some of the offense’s “dirty work”.
With there being an increasing likelihood that the Colts could lose one of their top two tight ends Dwayne Allen or Coby Fleener in this year’s free agency, Doyle could be poised to become the team’s 2nd tight end next season.
As such, the Colts made a prudent move by ensuring that the team will likely be able to retain him for at least another season.