Report: Colts Won't Trade Marlon Mack, Feel Jonathan Taylor Will Help RB

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistApril 25, 2020

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA - DECEMBER 22: Marlon Mack #25 of the Indianapolis Colts celebrates after a play in the game against the Carolina Panthers at Lucas Oil Stadium on December 22, 2019 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images)
Justin Casterline/Getty Images

The Indianapolis Colts are reportedly "absolutely not" looking to trade running back Marlon Mack after selecting fellow rusher Jonathan Taylor in the second round of the 2020 NFL draft Friday night.

Zak Keefer of The Athletic reported the update Saturday and explained the Colts believe "Taylor will make Mack better."

The Colts' incumbent starter is coming off back-to-back productive years leading the backfield.

Mack rushed for 908 yards on 195 carries (4.7 YPC) with nine rushing touchdowns in 12 appearances during his breakout 2018 season. He reached the 1,000-yard plateau for the first time in 2019 as he recorded 1,091 yards on 247 attempts (4.4 YPC) and eight scores in 14 games.

The 24-year-old Florida native said he's hopeful his performance leads to a contract extension at a time when backfield weapons usually don't receive the same treatment as other skill-position players.

"In this league, as a running back, you gotta strike fast," Mack told reporters. "You don't strike fast, that's it for you. You're too old at (27). ... Running backs, man—running backs don't always get treated well. Running back is an important position. I hope people can learn that one day. I don't know when it fell off (for us), but I need it to go back up. Hopefully it happens one of these days."

The Colts' selection of Taylor, who rushed for 6,174 yards across three years at Wisconsin, suggests they're angling more toward a committee approach in 2020.

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What that means for Mack's contract aspirations isn't immediately clear, but it does further bolster the outlook for Indianapolis' offense next season.

Along with the running back tandem, the front office previously signed longtime Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers to lead a passing attack featuring wide receiver T.Y. Hilton and tight end Jack Doyle. The team also added USC wide receiver Michael Pittman Jr. in the draft's second round.

It should lay the foundation for a bounce-back year in Indianapolis after a disappointing 7-9 campaign in 2019.