The Indianapolis Colts announced on Wednesday that two defensive backs: cornerback Marvell Tell and safety Rolan Milligan have opted out ahead of the 2020 season.
The pair joins linebacker Skai Moore among the three Colts players who have currently elected to sit out as a safety precaution because of the ongoing pandemic.
Tell’s loss at outside cornerback is a big one for the Colts secondary. After an encouraging rookie campaign in 2019, the 2nd-year cornerback was expected to seriously challenge veteran Xavier Rhodes for the starting job opposite of Rock Ya-Sin.
The 2019 5th round pick appeared in 13 games (1 start) last season, recording 26 tackles, 5 passes defensed, and a forced fumble.
The Colts do not have much outside cornerback depth, as Kenny Moore is primarily a slot cornerback—as are top backups T.J. Carrie and rookie Isaiah Rodgers. It’s quite possible that the Colts could look to sign a veteran cornerback to help replace Tell this season.
Otherwise, Rolan Milligan has been a nice depth piece at safety, having joined the Colts in 2018—after pro stints with both the Dallas Cowboys and Detroit Lions.
The 25 year old safety appeared in 11 games (1 start) last season, recording 15 tackles.
Both players were safely expected to make this year’s Colts active roster, and their losses will deplete the depth of the entire Indy secondary.
However, at the end of the day, it’s their personal health, and no one can really blame them for prioritizing their safety and well being over playing football in 2020.