The Colts have seen success in free service by looking forward to the market to settle and registering players like Eric Ebron, who rewarded them for their patience in 2018. 

INDIANAPOLIS — The bargaining period of NFL free agency opened at noon ET on Monday. And while players such as Landon Collins, Nick Foles, Tyrann Mathieu and Trey Flowers quickly consented to deals, the team with salary-cap distance — the Indianapolis Colts — wasn’t very active.

The single movement the Colts made wouldn’t be distinguished as eye popping. They consented into some low-risk, one-piece, prove-it deal with former No. inch Carolina receiver Devin Funchess. This shouldn’t be looked at as shocking. It ought to be looked at not surprisingly.

Though the Colts have the extra money to invest and also have a demand to get pass-rushers, depth at the secondary and a No. 2 receiver, general director Chris Ballard’s approach isn’t shifting.

It wasn’t any different in 2018, if the Colts had the second-most salary-cap space. And also you also can’t expect it to be any different now that they’ve ever moved into the very best with $101 million in cap space before contracts have been finalized at the start of the new league season (4 pm ET, Wednesday).

Ballard repeatedly has talked about keeping and growing their own gift and also having a fixed-dollar value about what he’d spend to an individual new player. Ballard’s vision is more about longterm success compared to a surefire approach.

By way of instance, Collins could have been an ideal fit in Indianapolis’ defense. But consenting to the type of deal Collins allegedly developed with Washington — just six decades, $84 million — could have been an uncharacteristic move for Ballard. Teams times pay average players great salaries and below-average players moderate salaries during free service.

Ballard shows over and over again that he couldn’t care less about making connections with all the “bigname ” players to the freeagent market. He has no trouble sitting back and letting the market deal before he moves outside and signs players out of the 2nd wave of free service instead of getting into a bidding war early in free service.

Need proof?

Perhaps not most of the moves have panned out. Punter Jeff Locke didn’t create the 53-man roster in 2017, defensive lineman Johnathan Hankins was cut a year after signing up a three-year deal with the Colts and receiver Ryan Grant was wounded for part of 2018 and frustrated if he did play.

Ballard said in January he’s not worried about meeting the 89 percentage cash-spending brink, demanded by teams every four years under the collective bargaining agreement, because he knows he will have to pay his or her own players .

“Eventually what you’d really like to happen is you’re spending your guys,” he said. “You are rewarding the people in the locker room who have done the proper things for you personally. ”

The Colts moved 10-6 and also reached the divisional round of the AFC playoffs last season with this particular approach. The playoff loss to Kansas City showed the flaws the Colts have in their roster in pass-rusher and also in receiver.

They have to get better in either of those areas as a way to take the following step next season. It ’s an issue of whether or not they decide to attempt to do it through the draft or even when Ballard changes his freeagent approach ever so slightly by spending more money compared to the Colts are accustomed to spending.