NFL

Colts considering move for former MVP Lamar Jackson

By Sports Desk March 27, 2023

After years of patchwork quarterback play, the Indianapolis Colts are considering acquiring Lamar Jackson to solve their woes under center.

Just hours after Jackson announced that he had asked the Baltimore Ravens to trade him, the Colts became the first franchise to declare their intentions to look into acquiring the former league MVP.

"Anytime a special player is available, which [Jackson] is, you've got to do the work," Colts general manager Chris Ballard said Monday at the NFL's annual league meeting in Phoenix.

"I'm not going to get into deep discussions on where it's at or what we're doing or what we might do," Ballard said. "But what I'll tell you is he's a really good player, really special player. But you never know how any of this will work out.

"I think anytime at that position we have a chance to acquire a guy, you've got to do your work on it to see if it's doable," Ballard said. "Sometimes it is, sometimes it's not.

"If you don't feel like you have one that can absolutely change the franchise in terms of leading you every year, I think you're always going to feel some pressure to get that player right."

Since Andrew Luck’s surprising retirement in 2019, the Colts have shuffled through a list of stop-gap options at quarterback, including Philip Rivers, Carson Wentz and Matt Ryan.

Jackson confirmed suspicions that his relationship with the Ravens has been fractured Monday when he announced in a statement on Twitter that he had requested a trade on March 2.

On March 7, Baltimore placed the non-exclusive franchise tag on the two-time Pro Bowl quarterback, meaning that other teams could sign Jackson to an offer sheet in exchange for two first-round draft picks.

Teams could offer more than two first-rounders to the Ravens as a part of any potential blockbuster trade.

Ballard said his team will do their "due diligence" to bring an answer at quarterback to the Colts – who own the fourth overall selection in next month’s draft – and had previously said the team would consider trading up for the right quarterback.

On Monday, Ballard made the case for drafting a quarterback outside the first round.

"What I would tell you is that there's good players in this draft at every level," Ballard said. "Everybody just talks about the top four [quarterbacks], but there's some more guys out there that are pretty good players.

"And I think history's shown – especially in the last few years with [Philadelphia Eagles quarterback] Jalen [Hurts] being one and [San Francisco 49ers’] Brock Purdy coming in and playing really well – they come at every level. So, we'll do our work on every one of them."

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