A Look at The Future: Running Back

MIAMI, FL - DECEMBER 21: Marlon Mack
MIAMI, FL - DECEMBER 21: Marlon Mack /

The Colts are heading into the upcoming season with Frank Gore set to be their starting running back for the third straight year. Last season, Gore became the first Colts running back to rush for 1,000+ yards since Joseph Addai did so in 2007.

That being said he heads into 2016 at 34-years-old, and he isn’t getting any younger. Don’t expect Gore to be the Colts’ RB beyond this season as he is showing signs of slowing down.

Come 2018, we could see Marlon Mack as the team’s starting running back. He offers speed, an ability to avoid tacklers, and is a threat to score every time he touches the ball.

He always looks for the big play, sometimes to a fault, but is an exciting player who can change the result of football games. Taking everything into account, he has the potential to be a starter in this league.

With good coaching, mentorship from Frank Gore, and hard work, Mack could become a really solid player for years to come. Relying on a fourth round talent to be a given long term starter is overly optimistic, but Mack is capable of becoming one. However, if he doesn’t show promising signs in his rookie season, the Colts could be on the lookout for a running back next offseason.

By next season Frank Gore will most likely be gone, and the Colts’ starting running back will either be Marlon Mack, or someone not yet on the team. While Robert Turbin is a great 3rd down and goal line running back, he is not capable of being an every down starter in the NFL.

Fans should hope that Marlon Mack reaches his ceiling because running back will be a major flaw in the future offense if he doesn’t. If Marlon Mack is a bust, the Colts will need to either sign an RB in free agency, or draft another one in the next couple years.

Running back will be an interesting position group to watch over the next few years. With Frank Gore set to retire soon, the team is relying on Marlon Mack to be as good as his college play shows he can be.

GM Chris Ballard obviously believes in Mack, otherwise he wouldn’t have invested a draft pick in him, but if Ballard is proven wrong about Mack, the Colts could be on the lookout for a running back for 2018 and beyond.