Yesterday, the Indianapolis Colts signed running back Robert Turbin to provide a potential depth option behind Frank Gore. It was perceived as a solid move at the time, but especially after seeing the details of his contract, it's hard not to see it that way.
According to the USA Today's Tom Pelissero, Turbin's contract with the Colts is a one-year, $760,000 deal that has no guaranteed money, though the running back can earn an extra $80,000 in incentives if he reaches a certain amount of rushing yards.
Considering the Colts' need for depth at the running back position, the expanded 90 man offseason rosters, and the lack of financial commitment made to Turbin, it's hard to justify this not being a good move by the Colts. That doesn't mean that Turbin will turn into a special back with the Colts or even that he'll make the 53-man roster, but it does mean that it was a move worth making for Indianapolis. Prior to the signing yesterday, the Colts had just Frank Gore, Tyler Varga, and Trey Williams at the running back position. Of course, Gore has played 11 seasons in the NFL and is poised to crack the top-ten in career rushing yards next season, but behind him there was little depth. Varga missed most of last year with a concussion, while Williams played sparingly in a few games near the end of the season. Combined, Varga and Williams have played in just five NFL games and have totaled three carries for 14 yards. While both are intriguing players and could be guys to keep an eye on in training camp, the Colts had almost no experience behind Frank Gore.
That's where Robert Turbin comes in, as he has spent four seasons in the NFL and has played in 48 games, rushing for 1,127 yards and a touchdown and adding 50 receptions for 450 yards and two scores. The backup to Marshawn Lynch in Seattle for a few seasons, Turbin has played in two Super Bowls and saw decent playing time with the Seahawks before spending time with the Browns and Cowboys in 2015. He may not be great, but he has been a solid, reliable backup in the NFL before and that's something the Colts could use. This signing in no way prevents the team from adding another running back in the draft to develop as a potential starter long-term, but it does give the Colts some breathing room when it comes to the depth chart. When you can get that for a minimum price, that's never a bad move.