I keep hearing Colts fans complaining and complaining about Grigson's free agency picks. It's like if Grigson doesn't pick up all of the big names that the sports pundits put forward then he's doing a horrible job in the view of many Colts fans. I read one article where the writer accused Grigson of doing a great job in the draft but horrible job in free agency. To me, Grigson couldn't have done that bad in free agency, otherwise the Colts wouldn't have had an 11-5 season even though they had Luck.
People tend to forget that Polian left Grigson with a huge hole to climb out of consisting of $37 million in dead money last year. Considering the circumstances, I don't think he did too bad. He took a gamble on Avery and got a speedy receiver that gave him over 600 yards in receptions even if he dropped the ball a little too much. And he brought in some other good guys like Vontae Davis, which I think was a great choice. Not to mention guys like Satele and Justice weren't bad pickups given the little cash Grigson had to work with.
To me, Grigson and the Colts are flying under everyone's radar. Other than Landry and Hasselbeck, there are no real big names. But you can't fill that list with all big names or the list of good players you can grab up becomes real short because you just can't afford them. The addition of Landry was awesome. Hasselbeck adds that good insurance policy in case Luck gets injured and I'm sure he can impart some good wisdom to Luck during his tenure with the Colts that will make Luck a better quarterback in the long run. And the rest fill holes that the Colts needed to fill.
I like that for the most part, Grigson has stuck to fairly young guys, except in the cases where you need that true veteran experience as depth and to help guide the players who represent the future of the team like Luck and Chapman. To a certain extent, I don't care what the pundits say. I know the Colts have some pretty good evaluators of talent. You can't just go after the guys with the big stats. If you do, your piggy bank is going to be broke and you still will have a bunch of holes to fill. You have to look at the video and techniques like Grigson and Pagano do to see who can be good if just given the chance.
Instead, fans are looking at the stats or that a player hasn't played a lot and are writing them off way too soon. There have been numerous players that came out of nowhere and made big names for themselves. Jeff Saturday worked in a factory before the Colts grabbed him up over a decade ago. Now, he's likely headed for the Hall of Fame. Kurt Warner was a grocery bagger before the Rams grabbed him up. And don't forget, Grigson was with the Rams at that time. He might have been the guy that grabbed up Warner who gave the Rams the greatest show on turf. Then what about Deji Karim? He was a bell hop at a hotel and was brought in and returned a punt for a touchdown against the Texans. Don't forget about Pierre Garcon who was a 6th round rookie that caught all of like 3 passes in the 2008 season and was known for dropping balls before the Colts utilized him heavily and went all the way to the Super Bowl in 2009. And now the guy is getting paid $45 million by the Redskins.
My point is that it is easy to pick out guys like Garcon AFTER they have the stats and are well known, but by that point you are paying way too much for what you get out of them. I want a GM that can pick out that 6th round Garcon-like player with just 3 catches, see that he has the speed to be a serious threat and is smart enough to grab up a guy that to fans may look like a horrible player, but can turn into something far more. That's what Grigson is doing. And he's good at it. He has a track record of about 15 years that shows he's good at it. Give him some slack and let the card hand play out.