Indianapolis Colts fans have come to realize through many years of conditioning that whatever the front office or general manager says can be taken with a grain of salt. Generally, coach speak and the watered down version of reality that the general manager delivers to the media is nothing more than bulletin board material. In his short tenure in Indianapolis, Chris Ballard has repeatedly stressed the importance of competition for spots on the roster and made it clear that every player will have to earn their way onto the team.
While all of that talk is nice, it has become a rather safe assumption that GMs can talk-the-talk on competition but will not walk-the-walk because doing so sometimes flies in the face of their own egos. After all, when you cut players you sign in the off-season or who you spend a high draft pick on, you’re admitting that you messed up to yourself and to everyone else.
Two of the earliest cuts from the Colts training camp roster were free agents targeted and signed by Chris Ballard himself. Veteran linebacker Sean Spence played for the Titans last year and was immediately considered a potential starter by the Colts fan base.
Instead, Spence has missed much of training camp injured and did not do enough to out-perform other linebackers on the roster (or on other rosters) to be worthy of keeping his spot. Today, Ballard showed no hesitation and stayed true to his word and his philosophy — Spence didn’t win the competition for a spot on the roster and was summarily cut.
This is not the first move Ballard has made admitting that his attempts at filling holes on the roster through free agency did not pan out. He also recently cut Jeff Locke in favor of undrafted free agent Rigoberto Sanchez. Granted, punters and kickoff specialists aren’t the sexiest of players but his initial investment and the initial confidence he showed in bringing in a veteran did not get in the way of keeping the player who has more ability now and a much higher ceiling.
We will keep you posted throughout the day as more roster moves continue in the Colts Roster Cut Track 2017.