The Indianapolis Colts brought Ryan Grant in during free agency this offseason. What can the veteran wide receiver bring to the offense in 2018?
For the first three seasons of his NFL career, Ryan Grant was little more than depth. With the Washington Redskins, the wide receiver amassed 39 receptions for 412 yards and two touchdowns in that time.
Year four was a different story however, as Grant was given a much larger role in the Redskins offense. He proved to be a reliable target, collecting 45 receptions for 573 yards and four touchdowns. Now with the Indianapolis Colts, Grant’s role could expand even more.
Besides T.Y. Hilton and Grant, the Colts don’t have much at the receiver position. The roster currently holds 12 wide receivers. Hilton has the most career receptions (431) by far, with Grant’s 84 coming in second.
Chester Rogers comes in third with 42, while James Wright has 18 (none since 2016). Then there’s Kasen Williams with 10. After that, there’s a seven-way tie for last with zero receptions each.
Due to all this, Grant actually brings a lot to the table for the Colts. First off, he brings experience. Surprisingly his age (27) and years of experience (entering year five) are both second at the position (first in both is Hilton).
Most importantly though, Grant brings stability. It looks as though Andrew Luck will indeed be returning to the field this season, and he’ll need a lot of help from his receivers.
Grant may not be the lethal threat that Hilton is, but he’s an extremely reliable target who can keep the chains moving. Of his 45 receptions last season, 29 were for first downs. This is no coincidence. Thanks to sure hands and above-average route running, the Redskins continuously targeted him on routes by the sticks — to keep drives alive.
Luck is in a tough situation. He hasn’t appeared in an NFL game since 2016, and one look at the roster will show he won’t have too much help in the passing game. Hilton is the clear number one target. Grant can not only be the number two, but serve as a security blanket as well. Grant doesn’t need to run 20-yard routes to be effective. He can live off those short-yardage routes, and get the offense moving.
The Indianapolis Colts are in for an interesting season thanks to the return of quarterback Andrew Luck. Ryan Grant is here to help along the way, and he could be much more important than many realize.