As the trade deadline approaches, there aren’t many expecting the Colts to be active players in the action that NFL.com’s Gregg Rosenthal calls the “trade tsunami.” Chris Ballard likes his draft picks, and doesn’t part with them easily. He also has famously said on many occasions that a team is rarely one move away from “arriving” as a franchise.
Because of this, it is unlikely that the Colts are going to be buyers in the trade frenzy that can take hold in the final week before the deadline. Still, it might be a mistake to count the Colts out of any trade action. Chris Ballard has shown himself to be a savvy trader, and he has made several really impressive trades as the Colts’ GM, the biggest of which was trading first-round bust Phillip Dorsett to New England for Jacoby Brissett.
Ballard isn’t afraid to move players, and while his most active time is during the run up to the draft, he might see this week as a good time to field some offers for one particular player on the Colts roster.
Quincy Wilson is a guy the Colts have had high hopes for since his arrival in 2017. He is a young cornerback who just hasn’t been able to turn the corner, despite showing signs of having the talent and skills to do the job. Stephen Holder of the Athletic speculated that Wilson might be a guy the Colts would move on from in the site’s own trade primer.
With ample opportunities to get on the field due to injuries and bare position groups in his time with the Colts, he has been thoroughly outshone by first Nate Hairston, then Kenny Moore, and now Rock Ya-Sin. Wilson averages around 20 snaps every game, and primarily plays a role in dime packages where he’s matched up with tight ends, to a mixed bag of results.
As far as upside goes, there is a good bit of it for a team that thinks they can bring Wilson along. For starters, Wilson is just 23 years old, despite being in his 3rd year as a pro. He has also shown an ability to be a versatile defender, playing everywhere in the backfield. There could certainly be a defensive coordinator who thinks Wilson could be put to use in their scheme better than the Colts have been able to utilize him, and tap into his potential.
So what could the Colts expect to get in trade for Wilson? Stephen Reed of Stampede Blue speculates that the likely top trade value for Wilson would be in the ball park of a 5th round pick, given his struggles. Perhaps a team in need of talent in their defensive backfield would be willing to part with a pick at that level, and the Jets come to mind—they gave up a 6th rounder for Nate Hairston and have been a willing trade partner with the Colts recently, to the benefit of both teams.
While a trade of Wilson is a possibility, the Colts won’t be likely to move him in a hurry without a really good offer. While he doesn’t have a huge role on the defense, he’s making rookie money, and given the injuries to their secondary so far this season, it may be more valuable to the Colts to hold onto him. With just a week to go before the trade deadline, we’ll see if Chris Ballard has any tricks up his sleeve.