Earlier this season the Cleveland Browns and New England Patriots made a big move, as the Patriots sent linebacker Jamie Collins to the Browns for a compensatory third round pick.
It was a very interesting move involving one of the game’s top linebackers who is just 27 years old and on a contract year, and I’m sure many Colts fans were wondering whether Indianapolis was interested in Collins - since, after all, the linebackers are the weakest position group on the team.
That was a question that a fan asked general manager Ryan Grigson on his radio show last night on 1070 the Fan, and Grigson’s response was a polite no.
“My phone’s always on and we’re always going to look at any situation or player that can potentially make us better and get us where we want to go, but no, he was not in the mix,” Grigson said.
What’s unclear is whether Collins wasn’t in the mix because the Colts thought the asking price was too high (which wouldn’t make sense), because the Colts thought he’s not an upgrade (which also wouldn’t make sense), because he’s on a contract year and the team wasn’t sure they’d be able to re-sign him (which is more plausible), or because they simply didn’t engage in negotiations with the Patriots about a potential deal whereas the Browns did (also a possibility). So Grigson’s answer doesn’t really tell us a ton other than that the Colts were not in the mix for Jamie Collins.
The Colts really could have used a linebacker like Collins because of their weaknesses at linebacker, though reports out of New England in the wake of the trade called the linebacker’s tendency to freelance on-the-field into question. But there’s little doubt that he would be an upgrade over what the Colts have, and a compensatory third round pick (or a fourth, if no such pick is given) doesn’t seem like too much to give up for that type of guy. But at the same time, if the Colts felt they wouldn’t be able to keep him after the season - he’s expected to want more than $12 million per year - then they perhaps thought the third round pick would be more valuable. Regardless of what the exact reasoning behind the decision was, however, Ryan Grigson confirmed last night that the Colts were not in the mix for Jamie Collins.
Collins played in 50 games and started 41 for the Patriots since being drafted in the second round of the 2014 NFL Draft, and he emerged as one of the top linebackers in football. He recorded 291 tackles, 10.5 sacks, ten forced fumbles, 16 passes defensed, and five interceptions while earning a Pro Bowl berth last season. In two games with the Browns this year, Collins has recorded 17 tackles and a sack.