Over the course of their history, the Colts have mostly tried to stay away from large free agent spending sprees. They think that is the key to their success.
Chris Ballard has not been known for flashy signings. He has focused on drafting good players and developing them and keeping them under contract. He, just like Jim Irsay and the rest of the organization, think that will be the key to winning a championship.
The only person in recent history who didn’t have that philosophy was Ryan Grigson. He tried to make splashy signings in the offseason. He signed veterans to bad contracts that didn’t work out. Most of those players were either cut or moved on after their contracts expired.
Because of that terrible style, the Colts got Ballard. He understands the value of drafting players at positions of need and developing them. Because of that, the team turned around from a 4-12 record to a 10-6 record in just a year, even winning a playoff game.
Now the team is in a position to be contenders for several years. That’s because Ballard has stuck to the plan he has. He doesn’t want to use his cap space on outside free agents. He wants to use them on his own young players to keep them in Indy.
The results early are good, but no championship has been yielded yet. The rigors of what he is doing only matter if a Lombardi comes to Indy. But if you look around at the most successful franchises in the league, they all run their organizations the same way.
Don’t expect the Colts to stray from that anytime soon. They did once, and it was a disaster.