Colts seeking offensive reinforcements on draft weekend
42. INDIANAPOLIS COLTS (9-8)
LAST SEASON: Carson Wentz, NFL rushing champion Jonathan Taylor and a solid defense put Indianapolis in position to make the playoffs. But the Las Vegas Raiders beat the Colts on their home turf in Week 17 and then Indy endured an embarrassing 15-point loss at Jacksonville in the season finale — a collapse that eliminated it from the postseason and spurred an offseason overhaul. Gus Bradley takes over as defensive coordinator from Matt Eberflus, now head coach of the Chicago Bears. And general manager Chris Ballard has plugged three major holes by trading for 2016 league MVP Matt Ryan and 2017 Pro Bowl defensive Yannick Ngakoue in addition to adding 2019 NFL Defensive Player of the Year Stephon Gilmore at cornerback, and dealing Wentz to Washington.
FREE AGENCY/TRADES: Traded Wentz to Washington and starting CB Rock Ya-Sin to Las Vegas in exchange for Ngakoue. TE Jack Doyle announced his retirement. Lost WR Zach Pascal, OG Mark Glowinski and S George Odum. Acquired Ryan in a trade with Atlanta. Signed Gilmore, safeties Rodney McLeod and Armani Watts, CBs Brandon Facyson and Tony Brown, LB Brandon King and OT Brandon Kemp in free agency. Re-signed DT Tyquan Lewis, OT Matt Pryor, LB Zaire Franklin, TE Mo Alie-Cox, CB Marvell Tell III, WR Ashton Dulin.
THEY NEED: LT, CB, WR, TE, long-term QB prospect.
THEY DON’T NEED: RB, LB.
POSSIBLE FIRST PICK: Central Michigan OL Bernhard Raimann; Georgia WR George Pickens; Alabama WR John Metchie III; CB Kyler Gordon, Washington.
OUTLOOK: Ballard has spent this offseason adding key pieces to an already strong defense. Indy now has five starters with Pro Bowl credentials and potentially the best pass-rushing rotation in more than a decade. Now Ballard will likely address the offense. At age 36, Ryan gives Indianapolis the best combination of arm strength and veteran savvy its had since Andrew Luck. But even he needs help. The most glaring hole is left tackle where last year’s inconsistent starter, Eric Fisher, remains unsigned. Indy also needs young receivers and a legitimate No. 1 tight end.