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Colts needs, players to target in 2023 NFL free agency

We go over the Indianapolis Colts top positional needs in free agency and some players they may try to sign this offseason.

Jonathan Taylor #28 of the Indianapolis Colts warms up before the game against the Minnesota Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium on December 17, 2022 in Minneapolis, Minnesota Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

The Indianapolis Colts don’t have a lot to hang their hats on from last season. They did manage to beat the eventual Super Bowl champs in the regular season but still ended with a 4-12-1 record, barely finishing ahead of the Houston Texans in the division. Indy dealt with a number of injuries last season and is still needing to find a reliable quarterback this off-season.

Indianapolis Colts free agency preview

Positional needs: QB, S, LB, EDGE, WR, OL

The quarterback position continues to vex Indianapolis. Since Andrew Luck retired ahead of the 2019 season, they have had a new starting quarterback each year. The team does hold the No. 4 draft pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, so they are in a prime spot to draft their quarterback of the future. The second biggest need is going to be figuring out what went wrong with the offensive line last year. The whole unit completely fell apart, which led to the entire offense taking a giant step back. Alec Pierce should take a step forward, but the team still needs to bring in another established wide receiver to help improve the offensive outlook.

On defense, the Colts can use help at every level. On the line, both Yannick Ngakoue and Tyquan Lewis are hitting the free-agent market. Indianapolis could also use some more interior defensive line help to help bring down the quarterback. Bobby Okereke played 85.1% of defensive snaps and is set to be a free agent, while Shaquille Leonard missed most of the season due to an injury, causing the Colts to look into linebacker help. Safety Rodney McLeod is also going to be a free agent leaving fairly large shoes to fill from his 90.6% of snaps played.

Players to target

I really think that the Colts are going to walk away from the first round of the NFL Draft with the quarterback they want from the future. They could go after Derek Carr or even Aaron Rodgers, but if the focus is on a developmental quarterback, they are more likely to sign Tyler Huntley or bring back Jacoby Brissett. For wide receiver depth, a guy like Jakobi Meyers, Marquez Callaway or Mecole Hardman would really help the team.

Outside of Quenton Nelson and Ryan Kelly, the Colts could bring in three other players to help the line. To protect whoever is under center and try to return Jonathan Taylor to his previous success, they could bring in RT Kaleb McGary, LT Orlando Brown, RT Jawaan Taylor, RT Mike McGlinchey or RG Connor McGovern, who would all instantly start and boost the entire line.

On defense, LB Rashaan Evans, S Jessie Bates III, LB Alex Anzalone, DT Da’Ron Payne, S Juan Thornhill, EDGE Lorenzo Carter or DT Greg Gaines need to be on top of the call list for Indy. They don’t need to go after everyone, but the team’s defense has been its strong suit for the last few seasons, so they can’t afford to take a step back.