Colts G.M. looking for “good dudes” this offseason

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Colts General Manager Chris Ballard enters the offseason in a rare spot.

He has an ascending team, and plenty of salary cap room to help make it better. But he also has a plan, as he tries to maintain the chemistry the Colts displayed this season, coming back from a 1-5 start to make the divisional round of the playoffs.

Via Mike Wells of ESPN.com, Ballard said finding cultural fits would be important as he figures out how to spend. He mentioned a game this season when former Colts wideout Reggie Wayne was being inducted into the team’s ring of honor, and saw former teammates Peyton Manning, Robert Mathis, Edgerrin James and Jeff Saturday there to see him.

“All the great players, and I just looked at them and I said, ‘You know what is consistent with those guys? They are good dudes, they are good guys, they are good teammates,'” Ballard said. “They connected, they all have relationships with each other. That resonated with me. In my mindset, it’s always something you want and you strive for, but to me, that really cemented it that day.

“I am looking over and I am saying that is what we want to be. I want to look up 15 years from now and we got 10-12 players and somebody going into the Ring of Honor and they all still got these connecting relationships . . . and they went through the struggle and had great success because of it.”

So while he has a pile of cap room (around $120 million), he’s also thinking ahead to the days when rookie stars such as Quenton Nelson and Darius Leonard will be needing extensions (which can’t happen for two more years).

“I think just because you have all this [cap] space, just look at the roster and look at the contracts that are going to be coming up over the next two- to three-year period and you are going to see — eventually what you would like to happen is you are paying your own guys,” he said.

Of course, he’s still going to spend. But it will be interesting to see on the other side of the spending whether his emphasis on character holds up, and whether there are guys they could certainly use who don’t end up there for reasons other than money.

17 responses to “Colts G.M. looking for “good dudes” this offseason

  1. Looking for “good dudes”. I guess that means Le’Veon Bell better start looking for another team to give him his big payoff. The Colts are going places and don’t need that guy in their locker room.

  2. The “Good Dudes” plays well with the public but he is looking for good football players. As Ray Nitschke said, “I will take the whiskey drinkers and you take the milk drinkers and we will see you wins the game”. Football isn’t won by being a good dude.

  3. Good dude loving Colts cap space: $120 million.
    Miserly player hating Patriots cap space: $23 million.

  4. BuckyBadger says:
    January 17, 2019 at 1:01 pm
    The “Good Dudes” plays well with the public but he is looking for good football players. As Ray Nitschke said, “I will take the whiskey drinkers and you take the milk drinkers and we will see you wins the game”. Football isn’t won by being a good dude.
    ——–
    Good teams have an affinity for players that are good men. A leader isn’t going to be a hot head who can’t handle his testosterone. Name one great “whiskey drinker” leader in modern team sports? Teams are built with good dudes being a part of the equation. Maybe when Nitschke played it was a different story? You can’t win if every player on your team is like Richie Incognito…

  5. Ray Nitschke said
    ===================================

    Game is a little different than it was 50 years ago, but thanks for the insight.

  6. erinrodgersreachednirvana says:
    January 17, 2019 at 12:06 pm
    Better get enough to get you home-field advantage because Captain Luck can’t win on the road or outdoors.

    —————————————————————————————–

    You do realize Luck won the WC game outdoors at Houston, right? I guess facts are too hard for some people to look up

  7. I spent the Ryan Grigson era poking fun at the Colts and thier owner. This year Irsay has stayed quiet and out of the news and Chris Ballard and Frank Reich put a good, competitive team on the field. That divison will be fun to watch next year. As for poking fun, I’ll now turn my attention the the Steelers.

  8. Don’t waste any money on those locker room Diva’s. Pay the ‘good’ guys you’ve already got.

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