Colts Lose Slot WR in Free Agency: Report

Parris Campbell

Getty The Colts are losing WR Parris Campbell in free agency.

The Indianapolis Colts will spend 2023 without one of the team’s top targets.

On the second day after free agency officially began, the New York Giants agreed to a deal with Colts wide receiver Parris Campbell, according to a tweet by The Score’s Jordan Schultz. The deal marks Campbell’s first as an NFL veteran.

Campbell was initially rumored as a target to become the Giants’ new starting slot receiver on March 13. He signed just three days later, with the deal not yet official due to a pending physical.

Campbell struggled with injuries during his first three seasons, including suffering a season-ending PCL injury in 2020. Entering 2022, he had only played in 15 of a possible 49 regular-season games.

Last season, however, he proved why the Colts picked him in the second round of the 2019 draft. He notched career-highs in receptions (63), yards (623) and touchdowns (3).

The Giants are acquiring Campbell on a short-term, low-risk deal likely due to his injury history. His new contract spans just one year and is worth up to $3 million, per The Blue Stable’s Landon Oliver.

The Indianapolis Star’s Joel A. Erickson followed up Oliver’s tweet by including more details.

Campbell’s base salary is $1.4 million, with $1.7 million available in per-game roster bonuses and up to $1.9 million in incentives for receptions, yards and touchdowns. The new Giant will also get an immediate $1.5 million as a signing bonus.

Campbell now joins linebacker Bobby Okereke as the second Colts player to have signed with NYG this offseason.

Colts’ Future at WR

Campbell going to New York makes the Colts’ situation at skill position interesting just a few weeks before the draft.

Now that Indianapolis has officially moved on from its top slot WR, The Athletic’s Zak Keefer believes Colts will focus on selecting a receiver in the draft.

“I expect them to draft one, and high,” Keefer tweeted on March 16.

If the Colts don’t target Campbell’s direct replacement via the draft, they could sign a veteran as a plug-in option. Among the top remaining free-agent slot WRs are Jamison Crowder and Jarvis Landry.

The team could also look to build upon its depth behind WRs Michael Pittman Jr. and Alec Pierce. Keefer said Pittman Jr., Pierce, Ashton Dulin and Mike Strachan are the team’s top WRs following Campbell’s departure.

Campbell Adds to NYG’s Skill Position Talent

Campbell, the Colts’ second-leading receiver in 2022, is currently listed as the Giants’ starting slot receiver on the team’s depth chart.

He’s entering a favorable situation, as New York has recently added more weapons to surround quarterback Daniel Jones.

The team brought back WR Sterling Shepard on a 1-year deal on March 12. In his career (seven seasons), Shepard has over 4,000 receiving yards despite playing just 10 games in the past two seasons due to Achilles and ACL injuries, respectively.

NYG most notably acquired 2020 Pro Bowl tight end Darren Waller in a trade with the Las Vegas Raiders on March 14. The Giants sent a third-round pick (No. 100) as part of compensation.

Just two days later, the team re-signed WR Darius Slayton, who put up a respectable 46 catches for 724 yards and two touchdowns in 2022.

In addition to Shepard and Slayton returning, the team also retained running back Saquon Barkley by using the franchise tag. Barkley is set to earn $10.09 million next season after putting up 1,312 yards and 10 touchdowns in 2022.

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