1. Saying goodbye to Justin Houston
Houston is still out there on the open market, as the Colts were apparently not interested in re-signing a player with years of experience, production as a defensive end for Matt Eberflus, and several Pro Bowls to his name. Replacing him is fine, but they have done it in the worst way possible in the draft.
The Paye pick was a solid move. They added a premier pass rusher with versatility and athleticism. The Odeyingbo pick shows that the Colts are not bringing Houston back and will fully be going with the youth movement on defense, which could end up being a very risky strategy in the short term.
Justin Houston is likely leaving the Colts.
Houston was a monster in Indianapolis, showing that he could replicate his production from Kansas City. He could’ve helped the Colts form one of the nastiest defensive lines in the game. Ballard chose to go young with Paye, Odeyingbo, and the signing of Isaac Rochell.
Paye better hit the ground running, and Odeyingbo has to show that he hasn’t lost one iota of speed after his injury. If they fall on their face in that regard, the Colts might have to sit through a season in which Eberflus’ once-mighty defense completely crumbles to dust before their eyes.