We've been following wide receiver Duron Carter here at Stampede Blue for a while now, as the Colts have long been one of the teams interested in the receiver and the interest is mutual between the two sides. The competition to sign Carter is nearly over, however, as he has reportedly narrowed down his top two choices and can officially sign on February 10.
His top two choices are reportedly the Minnesota Vikings (his Hall of Fame father Cris Carter's team) and the Indianapolis Colts. And, according to the Indianapolis Star's Stephen Holder, the Colts are the frontrunners to sign the former CFL receiver:
Carter, according to the source, is drawn to Indianapolis for obvious reasons: The presence of three-time Pro Bowl quarterback Andrew Luck and one of the NFL's best passing offenses. Carter and his agent have expressed his legitimate interest in playing for the Colts to the team's front office.
But immediate playing time is also important to Carter, and there remains uncertainty about where he would initially fit in with the Colts. Financial details will also play a role in what Carter ultimately decides.
The Colts remain sincerely interested in landing Carter and team officials have been in regular contact with him. As many as 15 teams are reported to expressed interest in Carter, but the Colts appear to have the edge.
Of course, there are a lot of things left to be figured out and this in no way means that Carter will end up with the Colts - but it is yet another report that the Colts are a very serious possibility.
It would be a move that would make sense for both sides. For the Colts, they need wide receiver help. In the AFC Championship game loss to the Patriots in which pretty much everything went wrong, one of the more glaring aspects was the Colts' inability to create separation in the secondary. It's clear that they need to address the receiver position because of that, but also because Reggie Wayne is considering retirement and Hakeem Nicks is a free agent. It's absolutely possible that one or both of them might be back next year, but either way, they need help at wide receiver. Duron Carter would bring that a bit but also give the Colts an incredibly talented player to work with. The Colts would then have a trio of receivers in T.Y. Hilton, Donte Moncrief, and Duron Carter that all possess great potential and all are 25 years old (Hilton), 21 years old (Moncrief), and 23 years old (Carter). That's along with a quarterback who is 25 years old (Andrew Luck) and also possess incredible potential. Signing Carter could be another nice piece to a dynamic passing attack that the Colts are building.
For Carter, he would be playing with one of the league's best quarterbacks and a guy that will be around for a long time in Luck. He'd join a good core of passing talent with Hilton, Moncrief, and tight ends Coby Fleener and Dwayne Allen. And he could step in and not feel all of the pressure right away because the Colts do have other threats in the passing game.
Ultimately, the allure of the Vikings would be going to his father's former team, having more playing time right away, and possibly more money - though we don't know how much either team would offer. The allure of the Colts is a great quarterback on a terrific passing offense who's core is very young.
It's crucial to maintain this point: don't get overexcited even if the Colts were to sign Carter. It'd be great and Carter is definitely a talented player, but he still is a raw player and has dealt with some off the field issues in the past. It would be a good move by the Colts, for sure, but don't think he'll step right in and be the next Marvin Harrison. He needs some work, but the Colts seem like a pretty good place for him to work on those things.
We'll continue to monitor the Duron Carter story and it'll definitely be interesting to see where he ends up, but at least according to the Star's Stephen Holder, the Colts are currently the frontrunners.
For more on Duron Carter, check out Andrew Aziz's fantastic in-depth breakdown of the receiver.