Colts’ Ryan Grigson expects extension talks with Andrew Luck to happen soon
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Feb. 25, 2016) – In the shadow of the on-going NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium, the Indianapolis Colts quietly are addressing personnel issues that carry long-range ramifications.
At the top of the list is signing quarterback Andrew Luck to an extension that could make him the NFL’s highest-paid player.
“Both sides are motivated,’’ general manager Ryan Grigson said Thursday. “We obviously want Andrew here. I really don’t anticipate any issues with that.
“I can’t talk about any numbers or anything like that. We haven’t started any of those discussions, but that will probably happen soon.’’
Owner Jim Irsay recently indicated an extension for Luck will put him in line for “that top-five group and the elite quarterbacks and the guys that have had the most success.’’
That would be a multi-year contract averaging at least $20 million per season. The likely issue will be the size of the guaranteed money.
“I don’t think there’s a debate on what he means to our franchise,’’ Irsay said. “I really see Andrew here, God willing, for a really long time.’’
Luck is just one part – albeit a major one – of the Colts’ multi-tasking efforts.
They are in the process of determining which of their own players whose contracts expire March 9 merit re-signing, and at what price. That list includes placekicker Adam Vinatieri, quarterback Matt Hasselbeck, linebacker Jerrell Freeman and tight ends Coby Fleener and Dwayne Allen.
Also, no one will be surprised if the Colts create additional salary cap room by terminating the contracts of wide receiver Andre Johnson and linebacker Trent Cole.
“It’s still fluid,’’ Grigson said. “That’s got to be a wait-and-see approach. If you try to re-sign some of your own, and if you’re not going to, then maybe that frees up cash to go after this guy or that guy.
“So it’s a wait-and-see, and it’s going to be a domino approach daily to see if we get this guy back or that guy back. You never know the market.’’
Grigson has been talking to agents this week, if for no other reason than to gauge the level of contract players are seeking. Allen admitted earlier this week his agent, Drew Rosenhaus, has talked with the Colts.
“You sit there and you talk and there’s really no information exchanged,’’ Grigson said. “Every year I wonder ‘Why do I even do this?’
“But at least they know you’re interested. They’re trying to figure out the market for themselves, that’s why they’re going to check the temperature of all the other teams. We don’t know what those markets are probably until a couple of days before free agency starts.’’
Grigson added the Colts’ preference is to retain several of their own players.
“I’m obviously biased, but I think we’ve got some good players that coach and I would both like to re-sign,’’ he said. “But we’ve got to prioritize. And they’re decisions. They’re extremely hard for our head coach, because nobody loves their players more than Chuck Pagano.
“They’re tough business decisions. That’s just the way the NFL is.’’
Surgery for Davis
Cornerback Vontae Davis is on the mend after undergoing foot surgery. Pagano told ESPN.com the procedure was to “clean up’’ issues with Davis’ foot and that it isn’t expected to keep him out for an extended time.
Davis appeared in the Pro Bowl in late January after being added as an alternate.