The NFL free agent season finally seems to be on the horizon, with the continued rumblings about a new labor deal, and the compressed time frame promises to lead to some excitement in the next couple of weeks. The Indianapolis Colts have their own stable of free agents to address (Joseph Addai, Melvin Bullitt, Clint Session, etc.), and they may look in the open market for help at left offensive tackle or defensive end or maybe even at running back. There is one free agent signing, though, already done and sealed, that could eventually have some impact on the Colts: Bob Sanders to the San Diego Chargers.
This is the first time since 2008 that Colts fans aren’t wringing our collective hands over Sanders health at the beginning of a season, but that’s just because he was finally released this past winter. There was some talk at the time that he could eventually be picked up again in free agency, but San Diego snatched him up before the ink was dry on his walking papers. While Sanders has proven to be exceedingly fragile, thanks to a combination of his reckless-abandon style and his diminutive size, he is undoubtedly supremely talented, having snagged NFL Defensive Player of the Year honors in 2007. It’s no wonder that San Diego took a flyer on him. I think a lot of Colts fans felt that we’d seen the last of Sanders in the NFL.
So now, the team that has become a constant thorn in Indy’s side potentially has a new way to cause pain for the Colts offensive attack. Sanders is presumably healthy, for now, and probably very motivated to make an impact this year. The Bolts don’t appear on the regular-season schedule, but these teams always seem to meet in the playoffs, and that’s where the real trouble begins. It would be extremely painful to watch Sanders seal the Colts’ next elimination with a late pick, particularly if Melvin Bullitt walks.
Thankfully, San Diego would probably need to ice him right now for that to happen.