Chris Ballard and the Indianapolis Colts are busy making roster moves on Sunday afternoon.
The Colts have agreed to deals with wide receiver Matt Hazel and running back Branden Oliver. With the signings, Indy also waived wide receiver Dres Anderson and placed highly-touted wide receiver Deon Cain on Injured Reserve.
The addition of another wide receiver was expected after the team announced Cain tore his Anterior Collateral Ligament in the Colts’ preseason opener against the Seattle Seahawks.
Hazel, 26, saw time on Indy’s active roster and practice squad last season. Before that, he spent time on the Cleveland Browns’ practice squad in 2017. Hazel has one career reception for one yard. Hazel has appeared in nine games, starting one for the Browns in 2017. In his previous stint with the Colts, he played in four games. Hazel has also seen time with the Washington Redskins and Miami Dolphins.
With Marlon Mack dealing with a hamstring injury, and Robert Turbin dealing with an ankle issue and a suspension, Indy adds running back depth with Oliver in the backfield. Oliver, 27, saw playing time in 30 career games over the last four seasons (2014-17) with the Los Angeles Chargers, starting eight games and amassing 773 yards on 226 carries (3.4 yards an attempt).
The Colts adding Oliver makes sense in a lot of ways. For one, Oliver played for Colts head coach Frank Reich when he was a part of the Chargers coaching staff from 2014-2016. Oliver was mentioned as a possibility to join the Colts in our free agent prospects piece yesterday.