It has been recently reported that Mr. Dwight Freeney, the amazing tornado, one of two top of the line defenders that Indy had during the Manning era that actually stayed healthy, is now on the trading block. I, for one, don't find this as sad as the end of the Manning saga; after Manning is gone, I think it is only fair to Freeny that he be allowed to move on to a more competative situation. Also, it is the best for the Colts.
I think the Colts have a real opportunity to fill a need, empty some cap space, and maybe get a premium draft pick on top of all that. Here are a few trade ideas I have. While I am going to use specific teams, these should be thought of as prototypes.
#1: the Kuharsky plan:
ESPN's Paul Kuharsky has recently stated that he thinks the Titans should pony up a 1st rounder. This would be an excellent out come if we could pull of a premium pick.
#2: Players and pics
Here's how I see this working, usuing the Bengals as an example: Freeney for Domata Peko, Michael Johnson, and a fourth rounder (Or Peko and a third round pick)
The Colts fill a couple of big need here. In Peko, they get a Nose Tackle and a pretty solid one on a team friendly contract. They get a pretty good athlete who can play DE/OLB in the hybrid system the Colts want to run. Finally, they get a couple of picks were some good O-line depth could be had.
#3: Player for player:
This one probably makes the least sense for a rebuilding team... unless, of course, we could get a really good young player. Ideally, this would be a high quality young player on a 4-3 team who had some cap space... Louis Delmas would be awesome, as I think a good young saftey plus signing a good young corner could really make this defense go from "dear god" to " meh" really quickly. Joe Haden, Brandon Flowers, and Earl Thomas are probably a bit too much to hope for, but that is the type of player that would probably make a Freeney for one player worth it.
Anyway, outside of a major contract restrucuturing, moving Freeney is absolutly the right move because of the cap space and the level of player that could be added to the Colts roster. Could you imgine adding a nose tackle, being able to resign Garcon, and adding a good interior lineman like Ben Grubbs? This team would be improved dramatically.
Wow. The Colts just released the following players: Joseph Addai, Dallas Clark, Melvin Bullitt, Gary Brackett, and Curtis Painter.
We are officially in rebuilding mode :o.
If you can get the 20th pick from the titans, do it quickly before they change their mind. If I could get a second and a third round pick that would be satisfactory as well. I am a little perplexed that they gave Mathis a four year contract at 31 years of age. You could have traded him for players or picks as well. I hope the front office takes the savings from these cuts and sign quality free agents instead of pocketing the money, and waiting for next year with more money in the kitty.
@horseshoe19 We couldn't have traded Mathis because he was a free agent. Plus, he fits better at OLB (for a smaller price) than does Freeney. I think Freeney could do it, but he is most valuable at RE in a 4-3 Defense.
@Milkboneunderwear Based on what I read, it's not like the Colts absolutely want to trade him, but they are taking offers. It wouldn't be the end of the world if Freeney is kept for the last year of his contract. I'm sure the Colts would love to get some draft picks and other teams are desperate to find top flight DE talent. He'd be the #2 free agent DE behind Mario Williams, but I'm sure he'd be cheaper and would help a team win now just as well.
@Milkboneunderwear I sincerely doubt that the colts would just drop him-- cap space will only have a minimal affect on the ability of the colts to compete. I think its more likely that the price drops or just holding on rather than the Colts just letting him go now
I hope you are right. Of course, a GM might think "Hey, they did just release Peyton Manning."
No way a team gives up a 1st round pick though.