Colts having lowest dead cap in league proves they should take a risk

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 27: Chris Ballard general manager of the Indianapolis Colts (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 27: Chris Ballard general manager of the Indianapolis Colts (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images) /

The Indianapolis Colts’ roster for next season is mostly locked and loaded in wake of OTAs concluding. Now, players, though rookies (and Carson Wentz) are sticking around for extra work, will enjoy close to a break before returning for training camp in July.

On paper, the Colts have one of the most talented rosters in the NFL. With that in mind, it likely won’t bug fans that the front office isn’t planning to make any further additions.

However, that shouldn’t be the case. For starters, the Colts currently have the 10th-most cap space in the league at $17.1 million, which is a testament to how carefully GM Chris Ballard manages the financial aspect of his job, even if it’s maddening in the eyes of fans.

Care to learn of another stat that proves Ballard is one of the best in the business? The Colts actually have the lowest dead cap number of any team at $255,000. Of course, dead money counts against the cap for players who are no longer on a team’s roster.

The fact that the Colts owe less than $260K proves they have more financial flexibility than Ballard and the front office are leading on. In other words, if the opportunity presents itself, they shouldn’t think twice about making another move or two to really fortify the roster.

The Colts having the lowest dead cap number in the NFL means they should make another move or two.

We know Ballard always has one (sometimes two) eyes on Indy’s cap situation. And he’d love nothing more than to have extra cap space to carry over into next season, when the cap will skyrocket once the NFL’s new lucrative television deals come into play.

However, there comes a time where preserving finances becomes detrimental to team success. While the Colts have the requisite talent to compete in the playoffs and make it as far as Conference Championship Weekend, we’d feel a lot better about their chances to do so if they bolstered some of their biggest weaknesses before the start of the season.

So, what moves would qualify as a risk? Well, trading for Julio Jones springs to mind, but that unfortunately seems like a pipe dream at this point. What about signing free agent KJ Wright to ensure Indy has enough

depth at linebacker

? We certainly wouldn’t be opposed.

We can’t speak for all Colts fans, but we’d feel a lot better about Carson Wentz in his first campaign if he was throwing to Zach Ertz. The longtime Eagles star is on the trading block, but Indy better act fast because he’s not going to be available forever.

Regardless, the Colts owing just $255,000 in dead cap for next season means they have zero excuse not to take another risk before the offseason ends. Their conservative approach made free agency absolutely infuriating, and we really hope we’re not having the same conversation a couple weeks down the road.