Broncos wide receiver Eric Decker is not a bad player. On the contrary, after quarterback Peyton Manning signed with Denver in 2012, Decker went from a nobody to a Pro Bowl player, catching at least 85 balls in each of the last two seasons for a combined 2,332 yards and 24 touchdowns.
On the surface, Decker is a stud. Beneath the surface, he isn't worth the likely HUGE contract he will get as he enters free agency this year. Because of this, the Colts should pass on him.
Part of the reason I focused on the wideouts profiled in this series here was because, for their skill sets, their asking price in free agency is not expected to be too high. The Colts need receiver help, but they cannot afford to invest too much of their projected cap space in one person at this particular position. Thus, options like Emmanuel Sanders, Jerricho Cotchery, and others make more sense over Decker.
Personally, I don't think Decker this that much better talent-wise than a player like Sanders. Decker's numbers are inflated because of Manning, who is simply a better quarterback than Pittsburgh's Ben Roethlisberger.
My main issue with Decker is he drops the football too damn much! Frankly, I'm sick of free agents additions doing this in Indianapolis. After two years of watching either Donnie Avery or Darrius Heyward-Bey stone-hand balls your grandmother could snare, enough is enough! Fast, dynamic playmakers are useless unless they can do the one thing required of all receivers: Catch the damn ball.
Decker had 8 drops in 2013 and a catch percentage of 64%, according to PFF. In 2012, Decker had 12 drops. To give you some perspective, Heyward-Bey had 9 drops in 2013.
By Week 13, we Colts fans were ready to storm the field and punch-out Chuck Pagano if DHB ever ran a route again in Indy. Thankfully, DHB was benched in favor of Da'Rick Rogers, who helped spark a Colts offense that had been dormant for nearly two months.
If the Colts sign Decker to the kind of deal he will command - somewhere in the neighborhood of 6-years and $64 million with $14 million guaranteed - then it's an acknowledgement that the team is OK with paying a guy who will, most likely, drop a key third down in a critical moment of a critical game. Personally, I'd rather that money get spread around to signing multiple players, with perhaps one of them being a wide receiver who doesn't have hands of granite.
Thus, you have my stance on why signing Decker is a no-no. There's a reason Denver is letting him walk. They think he is replaceable, which doesn't mean they are right or wrong in that thinking. It just tells you they don't think he's worth $64 million. Neither should the Colts.