The first day of the new NFL league year is concluding, and already the flurry of free agent activity has made it quite entertaining. As predicted, the Indianapolis Colts were active, though their focus on Day One was more on re-signing their own players rather than looking into the market to bolster their roster.
- Arthur Jones, DE/NT, of the Ravens was signed to a 5-year, $33 million deal with $10 million guaranteed.
- Adam Vinatieri, K, was signed to a2-year, $2.5 million deal with only $500,000 guaranteed
- Sergio Brown, S, was re-signed. Terms not yet known.
- Vontae Davis, CB, was re-signed to a 4-year, $39 million deal with $20 million of that guaranteed.
- Ahmad Bradshaw, RB, was signed to a one-year deal.
Indianapolis Colts general manager Ryan Grigson started the day with roughly $40 million in cap space. He used half of that $40 mill on today's players, with 1/4th of it on Vontae Davis alone. The Colts have roughly $17-$18 million in cap space left to work with. This is excluding money for draft picks, rookie free agents, IRed players, etc.
$17 million is nice to work with, but considering all the holes Grigson has to patch on this roster - including the center and safety positions - it might not be enough.
Overall, I'm happy that Arthur Jones was inked and Adam Vinatieri was re-signed. The Vontae Davis contract is insane, and it is in keeping with Grigson's growing reputation that he unnecessarily overpays for talent.
Like player, but stunned by $$$ in Davis deal. #Colts pay up for CB. Vontae has a lot to live up to now.— Phillip B Wilson (@pwilson24) March 11, 2014
Ryan Grigson is out of his damn mind.— Scott Salmon (@ScottSalmon48) March 11, 2014
For some reason, I feel like Colts GM Ryan Grigson would be an excellent tipper at restaurants. #Colts— Cyrus (@TR_Cyrus) March 11, 2014
#Colts clearly not afraid to keep stepping up to the plate with UFA's/claims/trades/etc. Surprises me given GM's career path.— Louis Riddick (@LRiddickESPN) March 6, 2014
When you look at Davis' contract, and then you see Alterraun Verner get signed by new Buccaneers G.M. Jason Licht to a 4-year, $26.5 million deal, it's impossible not to wonder if Grigson is simply in over his head when it comes to free agency.
The question now is how do the Colts proceed? What's he biggest priority? Including today's signings, in two seasons Grigson has invested invested over $77.9 million in guaranteed money in his team's defense. At some point, spending big money on this side of the ball must pay off.
For me, the wide receiver position is the area the Colts must address next, and after speaking to lots of people around the league, I'm not alone in that opinion. Unlike last year, receivers aren't coming off the market quickly. There's no massive Mike Wallace contract lingering out there. Even Eric Decker, a player NFL Network consistently linked to the Colts all day, is still yet unsigned.
There are bargains out there at key positions. Hopefully, Ryan Grigson can find some.