Indianapolis Colts 2022 Offseason Preview: Pending free agents, team needs, draft picks, and more

The Indianapolis Colts are in a good spot regarding their team needs, pending free agents, draft picks, and salary cap space.

Frank Reich and Chris Ballard are entering their fifth offseason together with the Indianapolis Colts, with a new starting quarterback in Week 1 of each of their four seasons. For a team relying on transient QBs, they’ve basked in some outrageous relative success. It looks like fortunes could favor the Colts once again when we look at their pending free agents, team needs, and draft picks in 2022.

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Indianapolis Colts 2022 Offseason Preview

They haven’t won the division since 2014, but they have made the playoffs in three of Reich’s four seasons. They traded for Carson Wentz in the 2021 NFL offseason, a pick that eventually turned into a first-rounder for the Philadelphia Eagles. Frank got his guy back and at least appeared to have fixed him enough to suffice.

Jonathan Taylor is here, and he is still cheap for quite some time, which should be a relief to the Colts’ cap situation. He runs behind a solid run-blocking offensive line that is physically imposing. They boast defensive playmakers at all three levels, also.

The Colts have $56.9 million in projected cap space

Source: Spotrac (as of Jan. 9) 

Ballard appears frugal in how he operates from the front office. However, they could go into the NFL offseason like Oprah Winfrey if they wanted to.

“You get a new contract, and you get a new contract. EVERYBODY GETS A NEW CONTRACT!”

But that’s not how Ballard operates. Only Wentz (No. 17 in our QB Power Rankings before Week 18) accounts for over 10% of the 2022 cap. Nobody else on Indy’s roster accounts for more than 7.5% of the cap. That’s counting the contracts of DeForest Buckner, Quenton Nelson, Braden Smith, and Darius Leonard.

They’re not out over their skis on any of their contracts.

Colts’ pending free agents

The Colts are in a great spot heading into the offseason. They don’t have many players to pay. Eric Fisher and T.Y. Hilton are probably the most expensive players, but I’m not sure they even consider bringing Fisher back. Both are 31 years or older. Mark Glowinski is another name they could bring back, especially for continuity purposes on the OL.

There is a mix of young and old upcoming free agents on defense, but none take super high priority. They could probably be had on inexpensive deals. Nonetheless, the Colts’ pro personnel department has some work to do to find players that fit their needs.

How do the Colts’ free agents rank among the best available in 2022? Be sure out our list of top free agents available at each position to find out.

Colts’ team needs

They need a left tackle to pair beside Nelson. They could also need a right guard, but Glowinski won’t be too expensive. Terron Armstead could be an option at left tackle if that’s a direction they’d consider.

Away from the offensive line, it feels like there are a number of nagging needs. They need another receiving weapon, even if they bring Hilton back, and they have just managed at the tight end position for a while now. On defense, the needs come up front rushing the passer and on the back end at safety. For this defense to really step up, they need to address those positions.

Colts’ top five needs in the 2022 NFL offseason

  • Left tackle
  • Wide receiver
  • Safety
  • Defensive end
  • Tight end

Colts’ 2022 NFL Draft picks

The trade compensation in the Wentz trade hinged on playing time. The Colts went over the threshold and lost their first-round pick in the process. However, they still have eight picks to work with and could use some Day 3 capital to move around and secure players they love falling close to their Day 2 picks.

Here’s how the Colts’ 2022 NFL Draft picks currently stand according to the draft order:

  • Round 2 (Pick 15)
  • Round 3 (Pick 18)
  • Round 4 (Pick 17)
  • Round 5 (Picks 16 & 35*)
  • Round 6 (Pick 40*)
  • Round 7 (Pick 18 & Pick 19* — from PHI)

*Projected compensatory selection

Dalton Miller is the Lead NFL Analyst at Pro Football Network. You can read more of his work here and follow him @daltonbmiller on Twitter and Twitch.


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