Lockout update: Who will the Colts still have under contract?

Well, today we seemed to make a lot of progress in the quest for a CBA.  It seems likely that we will have a deal very soon.  It seems almost guaranteed that we will have a full season. 

But what is not guaranteed is the return of a lot of the Colts key free agents.  Before the lockout, the Colts tendered Joseph Addai to a first round tender, Clint Session to a second round tender, and Daniel Muir, Melvin Bullitt, and Eric Foster to unknown tenders.  A tender means that if, for example, Addai were to sign with another team, the Colts would receive a 1st round pick.  However, Adam Schefter of ESPN is reporting that in the new collective bargaining agreement, the tenders would not hold up from before the lockout.  Any player with 4, 5, or 6 years of experience will become an unrestricted free agent.  That means Addai, Session, Muir, Bullitt, and Foster all would become UFAs, along with other notable Colts such as Charlie Johnson, Adam Vinatieri, Dominic Rhodes, and Mookie.  

Why does this matter to you? 

It means that once a CBA is reached, the floodgates will burst open and the start of free agency will be INSANE.  And, sadly, many of the Colts mentioned above may very well leave.  Most likely to leave will probably be Melvin Bullitt.  Bullit said earlier this year: “I can’t see myself coming back (to the Colts) other than with a long-term contract.  Just to be quite honest, it’s business.”  This doesn’t mean he’s gone, but I see it as more likely that the Colts go after Quintin Mikell, previously with the Philidelphia Eagles.  He is affordable for Indy, and is an excellent player.  I would still rather sign Bullitt than Mikell, but the most likely thing is for the Colts to let Bulllitt walk and go after Mikell.  

All I can say: don’t end up with Aaron Francisco as your starter.  It’s pretty simple.  

Free agency will be crazy, many Colts may leave, but one thing is certain: the Colts will be serious contenders in 2011.  The reason: the franchise tag will hold up.  That means we are guaranteed to have Peyton Manning on our roster next season, all the while working out a deal that should put him in Indy for the rest of his career.  

Isn’t he all we really need?

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About Josh Wilson
Follow Josh on twitter @jwilsonWL, on Facebook at the Operation: Freedom page, or you can reach him by email at operation.freedom@yahoo.com.

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