Pat McAfee has had a very successful four seasons with the Colts, twice setting seasonal records in punting average.
McAfee is one of 14 unrestricted free agents, a list that includes a number of teammates: Donnie Avery, Darius Butler, Austin Collie, Moise Fokou, Dwight Freeney, Tony Hills, Antonio Johnson, Winston Justice, Fili Moala, Mewelde Moore, Jerraud Powers, Drew Stanton and Jamaal Westerman.
McAfee has joined Freeney in recent days in being vocal about wanting to continue his Colts career. Both are draft picks by the Colts who want to extend their days in Indianapolis.
Free agency starts on March 12. Clubs may negotiate with its players prior to the deadline, and players in the unrestricted category like McAfee and Freeney can reach agreements with another team without the Colts receiving compensation once the signing period ensues.
Colts General Manager Ryan Grigson is a seasoned evaluator who knows the process full well. He has seen teams with which he has worked ink players prior to a deadline. Other times, players have re-signed with their teams once the free agency period starts, and some have left for other pastures.
Grigson has a keen eye on his current roster.
“I won’t get into specifics, but I’ve watched this team every day,” said Grigson after the season ended. “I’ve watched this team from practice. I know these guys from college. I’ve seen how they are in the locker room. I’ve taken in every ounce of information from the strength coach, from Chuck, from every source possible, and I feel like I have a good feel.
“I have prioritized, but that can also change in terms of if offers are rejected.”
Sometimes there is an interest all around in getting things done early. Other times there is a thought that testing the open market can benefit a player greatly.
With players at all positions, there is a market. But where is it?
“You don’t (know), and sometimes you’ll be pleasantly surprised, or you’ll be flabbergasted,” said Grigson.
Tags: indianapolis colts, pat mcafee, ryan grigson
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