The Indianapolis Colts head into another offseason without a playoff berth and plenty of questions abound. While we did see some substantial growth from the franchise, we also saw some areas of the team that either need addressing or improvement. The Colts did improve on their 2022 season from a 4-win campaign to a 9-win campaign and nearly won the AFC South but came up short in the final game of the season on a failed 4th-down attempt to end the season.
Let’s look at what issues and decisions will need to be addressed this offseason.
Decisions on Micheal Pittman Jr. and other free agents
The fanbase dealt with a holdout/injury in training camp this past season with Jonathan Taylor and while this won’t be a holdout this year for Michael Pittman Jr., as he will be a free agent if he and the team cannot come to an agreement. Indy could also use the franchise tag, which would continue negotiations but would continue to be a distraction.
MPJ has earned an extension and while many may disagree, he is worthy of WR1 money. He was the ultimate security blanket for Gardner Minshew this season and has put up consistently productive numbers with different quarterbacks throughout his career. With the big money cycling to wide receivers now, Pittman will without question test the market but he just purchased a home here with his wife and have begun to settle in so I would expect that they get this deal done sometime this offseason.
The other notable names that are free agents that the Colts would look to retain include Safety Julian Blackmon, defensive tackle Grover Stewart, and nickel cornerback Kenny Moore II. Blackmon finished the season on IR with a shoulder injury but had a terrific season and led the young secondary with Kenny Moore II. Grover Stewart will look to receive his third contract with the franchise and has been an anchor for that defensive line with DeForest Buckner. And finally, Kenny Moore has had one of the best seasons in his career. It was two years ago, he asked for a new contract that Ballard did not grant him, but he continued to be the consummate professional. This showed the franchise more than ever, that his veteran leadership will be needed going forward to improve the young secondary next season.
Other names that will be shopping the free agency market include: RB Zack Moss, DE Tyquan Lewis, Punter Rigoberto Sanchez, Safety Ronnie Harrison Jr., and Guard Danny Pinter (who was on IR) all season.