The Indianapolis Colts are getting younger and moving in a new direction as a franchise, and while they’ve had some great years put in by memorable and legendary veterans in years past, the time is apparently now to move on from that and into the new era. Peyton Manning was the main casualty of this last season and this offseason we are seeing another Colts legend exit as Dwight Freeney has been informed that he will not be given a new contract and is about to become an unrestricted free agent.
This isn’t a surprise decision by the Colts and has actually been in the works for sometime now, but it’s still more than sad to see an era like Freeney’s end in Indianapolis. The Colts switched to a 3-4 front last season which saw Freeney play linebacker for the first time in his career, a move that saw him take a giant step back in his production.
It wasn’t all depressing news from the Colts regarding Freeney today, as news of his eventual release was coupled with the announcement that he’ll be inducted into the Colts Ring of Honor in the near future.
Following Freeney out the door in Indy is wide receiver Austin Collie. While Freeney is being lauded for giving his sweat and blood to the Colts over the years, it was Collie that literally gave his head to the franchise, never being able to fully recover from the concussion he suffered during his time in Indianapolis. Collie is much less likely to get a job elsewhere and will not be getting a spot in the Ring of Honor.
So while this is more about Freeney leaving the Colts after an entire career with them, it’s interesting to note the class difference in the NFL despite how much of your body you’re willing to give up to succeed — or come as close to it as you can.