The Colts Have ‘Given Some Thought’ to Trading for Former MVP: Report

Chris Ballard

Getty Colts general manager Chris Ballard has a decision to make at QB this offseason.

The NFL’s new league year began on March 15, meaning high-demand Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson can publicly speak with teams regarding a trade.

The Indianapolis Colts have “given some thought to pursuing” Jackson, according to a tweet from NFL Analysis Net’s Evan Massey.

Massey added that the Colts are a potential destination for Jackson due to their impressions of the rookie QB class.

“They aren’t completely sold on any QB in this draft class,” Massey wrote. “A team to monitor.”

NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah suggested the Colts should trade for Jackson on March 10 — the same day the Carolina Panthers traded up from No. 9 to No. 1 in the upcoming draft. Jackson, who is on a non-exclusive franchise tag, can be traded if a suitor sends the Ravens two first-round picks.

Currently holding the No. 4 pick, the Colts could risk missing out on their desired rookie QB if they don’t trade up. Most mock drafts have at least four quarterbacks selected in the first round; others project four QBs taken in the first four picks.

2022 starter Matt Ryan was the sixth different starter at QB in six consecutive opening days. That trend will continue in 2023, as the team officially released Ryan on March 15 to save $17 million in cap space.

Panthers Showing Interest in Colts WR

Colts wide receiver Parris Campbell is one of the most notable slot receivers hitting free agency.

According to Horseshoe Huddle’s Destin Adams, one team that could pursue Campbell this offseason is the Carolina Panthers, now led by ex-Colts head coach Frank Reich.

“I’m being told the Carolina Panthers and ex-Colts HC Frank Reich have ‘significant interest’ in #Colts free agent WR Parris Campbell,” Adams tweeted.

The former second-rounder out of Ohio State struggled with injuries for his first three seasons but played a full slate for the first time in his career in 2022. He notched 63 catches, 623 yards and six touchdowns — good enough to be Indianapolis’ second-leading receiver last year.

What makes Campbell’s situation interesting is that the already Colts re-signed a wide receiver with an expiring rookie contract on March 15: Ashton Dulin. The team already has an established one-two punch with WRs Michael Pittman Jr. and Alec Pierce.

The Athletic’s Zak Keefer thinks Dulin’s return to Indy has thus affected Campbell’s chances of re-signing.

“They like Dulin at WR (as well as ST),” Keefer wrote on Twitter. “And it’d be very, very uncharacteristic for this team to dish out two WR deals in the same year.”

With that in mind, it seems like Campbell has a chance to land in Carolina to be coached once again by Reich — the man who drafted him in 2019.

Colts Sign OL to Extension

In addition to Dulin signing a new deal with the Colts, the team also kept a piece of its offensive line depth on March 15.

Per a tweet from Horseshoe Huddle’s Jake Arthur, Indianapolis extended versatile OL Carter O’Donnell. O’Donnell, a 2020 undrafted free agent out of Alberta, Canada, spent 2022 on injured reserve.

Spending 2020 and 2021 on the Colts’ practice squad, he has not played a regular-season snap. He was, however, called up to Indy’s active roster in 2021.

Dulin, O’Donnell and defensive end Tyquan Lewis are three players that the Colts have retained so far in free agency.

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