Colts Preparing To Let Marlon Mack Walk?

Prior to Marlon Mack‘s Achilles tear ending his season after one game, the Colts had not entered extension discussions with the veteran running back. They may well be prepared to let Mack walk in free agency.

The Colts saw second-round pick Jonathan Taylor finish his rookie year strong, and the team has Nyheim Hines and Jordan Wilkins under contract for one more season apiece. This already pointed to Mack needing to find a new team this year, and GM Chris Ballard is not sure the Colts will be able to provide the contract the four-year veteran will seek.

Marlon Mack broke my heart. That sucked,” Ballard said of Mack’s injury, via the Indianapolis Star’s Joel Erickson (on Twitter). “I watched him work his butt off here all season to get back. Marlon Mack deserves a contract, unequivocally. He deserves a good contract. I don’t know if we are going to be able to do that here.”

A few members of the standout 2017 running back draft class received extensions thus far. The Panthers (Christian McCaffrey), Saints (Alvin Kamara), Vikings (Dalvin Cook) and Bengals (Joe Mixon) authorized new deals for their starters. But Mack, Aaron Jones and Chris Carson are unsigned for 2021. Cardinals transition-tagged back Kenyan Drake is set to join this trio in unrestricted free agency. Broncos back Phillip Lindsay will also be a restricted free agent, adding to a crowded interesting marketplace.

Mack, 25 in March, reeled off a 1,000-yard season (in 14 games) in 2019 and surpassed 900 yards (in 12 contests) as Indianapolis’ starter the year prior. However, the Achilles injury may force the former fourth-round pick to accept a one-year deal and would figure to lower his price on a multiyear pact. That could keep him in play for the Colts, but their backfield depth points to Mack playing elsewhere next season.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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15 comments on “Colts Preparing To Let Marlon Mack Walk?

  1. Simmons>Russ

    Lots of teams need ball carriers, I just hope Mack falls on a team that will actually suit him. Maybe the Steelers where he can add a running game next to JuJu and Claypool.

    • arthur blank_for owner

      JuJu will be gone no doubt…Diontae Johnson is their #1 Receiver moving forward

      • Simmons>Russ

        Doubt it, they have Juju Johnson and Chase. Paid those their catchers with Mack running the ball and your going get better

    • jay13

      I think Marlon Mack would fit great with the Seahawks.

      You could see him go to the Patriots. It just feels like a Patriots/Belicheck move. I think back to when he signed Corey Dillon off a injured year. I see Mack doing the same thing and flourish.

  2. Simmons>Russ

    Heck I’d even like to see him with the Dolphins, helping Tua. Hopefully they can draft Sewell and upgrade that o line and the Dolphins will again take another big jump. Mack was born and raised in Florida too

  3. Ak185

    Not too surprising, considering that Johnathan Taylor looks to have acclimated to his role in the Colts’ offense. The strength of Indianapolis’ run game is their offensive line, and they rely a lot more on athletic guard play to open up lanes than they do on running backs’ ability to make tacklers miss in the hole. Mack did his job, which shouldn’t be discounted, but the Colts showed that they could run late in the season without him. In other words, Mack is replaceable production-wise for the Colts, entirely due to their offensive line.

  4. seth3120

    I just hate to see injury derail a career. These guys put their bodies on the line and one bad hit and they go from a decent extension to a buy low candidate

    • Ak185

      That could be interesting, actually. I could see them or the Steelers having interest, especially with other options available to share time or as insurance.

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