Colts conveyed willingness to do Jonathan Taylor deal in the days preceding Week 4

Interested in how the Colts and running back Jonathan Taylor repaired their strained relationship? Well, it took a significant change of heart on the team’s part.

Back in July, things took a turn for the worse as the Colts failed to make Taylor any offers for a multi-year contract. It seemed owner Jim Irsay wanted to go year by year, starting from Taylor’s final year on his rookie contract, then possibly using franchise tags for the subsequent seasons.

Taylor, who faced uncertainty with only a $4.3 million salary for 2023, decided to push back strongly. Irsay also pushed, resulting in both parties’ egos getting involved. Irsay made some foolish and brash statements and accusations on Twitter, while Taylor demanded a trade. The Colts allowed him to search for one.

However, when a trade didn’t materialize, Taylor spent the first four weeks of the regular season on the physically unable to perform list. During this time apart, the Colts seemingly had an epiphany. They realized Taylor wanted financial security, something they hadn’t provided for franchise running backs like Marshall Faulk and Edgerrin James in the past.

According to Stephen Holder of, the Colts reached out to Taylor’s camp in the days leading up to their Week 4 game against the Rams. And within the following weekend, they finalized a three-year, $42 million extension.

This investment aligns with the early years of quarterback Anthony Richardson’s contract, which are limited by the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA). By the time Richardson fully develops, the Colts can turn to the draft to find a new talented tailback.

Based on the structure of Taylor’s contract, that transition likely won’t take place until at least 2026. Coincidentally, that’s the same year Richardson will be eligible for a second contract.

Therefore, it’s a win-win situation that emerged after both sides appeared headed for a lose-lose outcome. Irsay deserves recognition for abandoning his tough-guy persona, and General Manager Chris Ballard likely played a role in nudging Irsay in that direction.


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